Obituary Notice

Obituary Notice

Our heartfelt gratitude to

Emeritus Professor Swarna Wijetunga

“It is indeed very sad to hear about the passing of Madam Wijetunga. I would like to express my deep heartfelt condolences in this difficult time on behalf of the Faculty of Education, University of Colombo.

As a pioneering academic member of the faculty, the significant contributions she made to establish and develop the Faculty of Education at the University of Colombo are invaluable and will remain in our hearts forever. We, as the next generation of the faculty, are reaping the results of the academic initiatives she began nearly two decades ago as the Dean of the Faculty of Education and Founder Director of NEREC.

Her contributions as an expert in the field of education and educational researcher have greatly influenced the education system in Sri Lanka, particularly in the upliftment of education and teacher training. As a well-recognized educationist, she was able to establish connections with reputable institutions around the world on behalf of the Faculty of Education.

She was a one of the pillars of our faculty as well as the field of education in Sri Lanka.

Hence, please accept our heartfelt condolences on the passing of Madam Wijetunga. Our thoughts and sympathies are with you and your family.”


Yours sincerely,

Dr. Kapila Bandara,


Faculty of Education,

University of Colombo.

The message of Condolences from the Department of Educational Psychology, University of Colombo

It is with great sorrow I extend this message of condolences on the demise of Professor Emeritus Swarna Wijetunge, who was a pioneer in the Department of Educational Psychology and in the Faculty of Education.

Professor Emeritus Swarna Wijetunge stands out as the most captivating figure of the Department of Educational Psychology in the Faculty of Education. Her amiable nature and genuine empathetic interactions with both academic and non-academic staff gained widespread admiration. She was among the earliest members of the Faculty of Education, and during her tenure as the Head of the Department of Educational Psychology from 1995 to 1997, she instigated lasting, positive transformations in the academic programs, a particularly commendable accomplishment, given the department’s relatively smaller size at the time.

Between 2000 and 2003, Professor Wijetunge assumed the role of Dean at the Faculty of Education, demonstrating her unwavering commitment to fulfilling academic and administrative requirements of the Faculty and the University. Her influence extended well beyond the University’s boundaries, with significant contributions to other educational institutions, the Ministry of Education, the National Education Commission, National Institute of Education, National Colleges of Education, Teacher Training Colleges, other departments of Education in Universities, the World Bank, UNICEF, the GTZ, and various other organizations, all aimed at elevating educational standards and teacher capacity development.

As a renowned figure in the realm of education, she established global connections with esteemed institutions, fostering valuable relationships for the upliftment of the Faculty of Education. Professor Wijetunge also holds the distinction of being the founder Director of NEREC, the National Education Research and Evaluation Centre (NEREC), which has maintained its prestigious status since its inception.

With an illustrious 36-year service record at the University of Colombo, Professor Wijetunge left an indelible mark on her colleagues, who found her a constant source of inspiration. Her teaching philosophy revolved around elevating her students, often willing to make personal sacrifices for their betterment. In the academic sphere, she remains a role model worthy of emulation.

I as the Head of the Department of Educational Psychology, University of Colombo at this moment extend my deepest heartfelt condolences on behalf of the Department of Educational Psychology to Mr. Wijetunge, who is no stranger to our Department and Faculty, and the two daughters and families grieving at her departure.


May our great teacher and mentor Madam Swarna Wijetunge attain the Supreme Bliss of Nibbana!


Chinthanka Chandrakumara

Head, Department of Educational Psychology

University of Colombo


It is with profound sadness, we announce the demise of Emeritus Professor Swarna Wijethunga, Founder Director/ NEREC , Former Dean,Faculty of Education. May she attain the supreme bliss of Nibbana.