The Swiss Ambassador was addressing the first ever Swiss-Sri Lanka Business Discussion Roundtable held in Colombo today. The Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen also attended the discussion. Switzerland today extended support to Sri Lanka’s reforms process including the 19th Amendment to the constitution, the Ministry of Industry and Commerce said.The Swiss Ambassador to Sri Lanka Heinz Walker-Nederkoorn has said that he was impressed with the democratic process Sri Lanka displayed at the January election. “Passing of 19-Amendment shows that the spirit of reform is very much alive in Sri Lanka. We, the Swiss, would like to support this Lankan reform spirit” he said. Walker-Nederkoorn, addressing the event, said: “Sri Lanka’s potential is high. I am pleased to share the first Swiss–Sri Lanka Business Roundtable in Colombo today. After the January Presidential polls, Sri Lanka started a comprehensive reforms process. As a representative of one of the oldest democracies in the world, I am very much impressed by the democratic process Sri Lanka displayed on 08 January. It is a unique event, and a very good start and passing of 19 Amendment shows that the spirit of reform is very much alive in Sri Lanka. We, the Swiss, would like to support this Lankan reform spirit.”He also noted that significant economic and political changes are taking place in Sri Lanka under the leadership of President Maithripala Sirisena. (Colombo Gazette) read more

A new student trustee hopes to use her position to educate others about Indigenous culture.Ashley Cattrysse, a Grade 12 student at Waterford District High School, has been named indigenous student trustee for the Grand Erie District School Board.“I thought it would be a good idea to take the position because I have two younger brothers and I want to give them a chance to learn about their culture,” Cattrysse said on Monday afternoon.Her goal is to take what people are interested in and educate them in the Indigenous background of those interests. As an example, she explains that when gym classes play lacrosse students could be taught about where the sport originated.Cattrysse is also interested in art and plans on suggesting Indigenous art history as a subject in pre-existing art classes.The student trustees attend board meetings and provide a voice for the students they represent.Cattrysse hopes other students will feel comfortable enough to approach her with ideas she can then take to the GEDSB meetings.“I have noticed a lot of avoidance of Native history and the problems they faced. I had a project on residential schools and none of the other students knew what that was. I don’t think it’s being taught as much as it should be,” Cattrysse said while sitting in the cafeteria at WDHS.She plans on starting small with changes in her own school, with the goal of other GEDSB schools following the example.Cattrysse heard about the trustee position from her French teacher, who told her it would be a good opportunity.She is just the second student appointed as Indigenous student trustee with the GEDSB. The post was created in 2018.There are two other student trustees within the school board, one represents the north half of the board and the other represents the south.Student trustees are in the positions for the school year, usually starting in September.astaylor@postmedia.com read more