Former educationist Gunapala Wickremaratne passes away

Published : 9:09 am  August 6, 2018 | No comments so far |  | 


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Untitled-1One of Sri Lanka’s prominent educationists, leading school principal, former Examinations Commissioner Gunapala Wickremaratne passed away on August 3. Born at Pathegama, Matara on May 19, 1926, he was a past pupil of Rahula Vidyalaya, Matara and Mahinda Vidyalaya Galle.  

Wickremaratne who was principal of Ananda Shasthralaya, Kotte(1960-64) and Nalanda Vidyalaya, Colombo(1964-69) was instrumental in starting teachers training college of education and became the first chief commissioner of college of education. He was a former educational director-general and a chairman of the Educational Services Committee. He was married to Vinitha Wickremaratne former teacher, Vishaka Vidyalaya, Colombo. He was the father of five children, the youngest of whom is senior journalist Dharman Wickremaratne.   

The cremation will take place at General Cemetery, Borella, on Wednesday August 8 at 5.00 p.m. The body which is now lying at his residence at 434/3 at Rukmal Place, Pitakotte will be taken to Nalanda Vidyalaya, Colombo on Wednesday, 12 noon for teachers, pupils and past pupils to pay their last respects until 4.00 p.m.  

Wickremaratne who was of the first three students selected in 1945 to the university from Rahula Vidyalaya, Matara, was later a teacher and a vice-principal of the same school. Later in 1956 he was awarded a postgraduate degree in education. Upon retirement after serving as director of education in several areas including Jaffna, Galle and Chilaw, he served as an educational consultant and member of the Public Services Commission for over two decades.  He was also the founder principal of the Junior University, Kuliyapitiya, Director of the Aesthetic Studies Institute, Colombo and principal of Technical Colleges in Galle and Maradana among other establishments. In addition Wickremaratne was the founder of the Matara Vidyalaya Past Pupils Association formed in Colombo on November 11, 1962.