Hands-on experience for bio tech teachers | Daily News


Hands-on experience for bio tech teachers

Hayleys Agriculture conducts workshops on biosystems technology for A/L teachers:
Teachers were trained by a qualified and experienced team from Hayleys Agriculture.
Teachers were trained by a qualified and experienced team from Hayleys Agriculture.

Hayleys Agriculture together with the National Institute of Education conducted two programmes recently to share best global practices and new technologies in agriculture with Advanced Level (A/L) Science teachers.

The two residential workshops were held at the Hayleys Agriculture Training School in Ekala, on May 29, 30 and 31 and June 19, 20 and 21. These programmes are part of a series of programmes designed to assist A/L teachers to grasp the practical aspects of the new subject introduced to the A/L bioscience curriculum, biosystems technology. In 2018, Hayleys Agriculture successfully conducted two similar training workshops for A/L Agricultural Science teachers at the Ekala Training Centre. On receipt of positive feedback from the participants, Hayleys Agriculture was once again called upon to carry out similar workshops on biosystems technology.

The National Institute of Education introduced several new technical subjects into the curriculum of Advanced Level Science stream in 2013 and one of which is biosystems technology. The syllabus was further updated in 2017.

According to the published syllabus of the Technical Education Department, Science and Technology Faculty, National Institute of Education, Maharagama, the subject, biosystems technology has been prepared by combining the use of modern technology in the fields of agricultural science, ecological science, practical science and biology. This subject includes activities that give the necessary skills for various agriculture-related occupations or self-employment to students.

The subject is also expected to give entrepreneur skills that can contribute to the economic development of Sri Lanka and improve the skills that are necessary for personal livelihood. The National Institute of Education has found a perfect training partner in Hayleys Agriculture to provide practical training on biosystems technology to A/L teachers.

Over 100 G.C.E. Advanced Level teachers who are teaching the new subject, biosystems technology were trained by a qualified and experienced team from Hayleys Agriculture. They were exposed to the best global practices and new technologies in agriculture.

Hayleys Agriculture Holdings which spearheads the agriculture sector in Sri Lanka consists of eight divisions; crop protection, crop production, agri equipment, plant rejuvenation and nutrition, animal health, the export of agricultural produce (food and non-food) and pest management. The company represents some of the world’s most respected and cutting edge brands in the agriculture sector and therefore, are exposed to the best global practices. The team at Hayleys Agriculture has gained much knowledge and experience through their interaction with Sri Lankan farmers as well as by attending training programmes overseas. The culture within Hayleys Agriculture is to share that knowledge with all stakeholders of the agriculture sector.

The training workshop conducted by Hayleys Agriculture for A/L teachers consisted of four key areas. They were,

* the introduction to ‘agricultural’ land preparation and machinery

* the introduction to protected houses and agricultural irrigation systems

* cultivation and maintenance of cut flowers

* principles of landscaping

To broaden the learning, the training programme also incorporated testimonials from successful players in the cut-flower and foliage industry in Sri Lanka. The Managing Director of Mahima, Plant Nursery, General Manager of Asian Cuttings Lanka (Pvt) Ltd., and Nursery Manager of Omega Green (Pvt) Ltd. shared valuable insights with the participants. Hayleys believes that these inspirational journeys and real-life experiences would help young future entrepreneurs to embark on self-employment ventures. The answer to our economic woes lies in the modernisation of agriculture and export of value-added crops. The teachers will no doubt inculcate a passion for modern agriculture among their students and Hayleys hopes that the next generation would be inspired to take up environmentally sustainable commercial agriculture.

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