I know enough people who will chuckle when they see the sign in the photo. Superficially some might want to tag it under “Sri Lanka’s funniest school names”. However the institution behind the name represents an envied niche in Sri Lanka’s creaking education infrastructure : private Muslim girls’ schools.
These are not burka swaddled Madrasas. Non Muslims seem to view Muslim girl’s schools offering secular skills and confidence with a strong religious education. Not too long ago, Muslim girl’s schools were among the few places in the country that offered a coveted English language education.
Quite a few times I have heard relatives comment that it is hard to compete with “smart well spoken girls from Muslim schools” for top jobs in the private sector. Or X must be smart because she went to Y Muslims girl’s school. The interesting thing I remember about these comments is that they were uttered with awe rather than resentment. Similar to the way people talk about MIT or Oxbridge grads. Its a significant contrast from private Christian Girls schools which were unfairly regarded as colonial lady factories churning out trophy wives for upper crust men.
Muslim girl’s schools also seem to be admired for shielding their charges from distractions. Not just from hysterical boys trying to storm the walls during big match days. Overall the perceived uncompromising religious identity is viewed as protection from sex obsessed western materialism imported via Michael Jackson and other agents of “social decline”. 😉 According to its website, The Lead the Way Girls International (it claims to be “Sharia Compliant”) aspires to carry on that tradition. I suppose the “International” part represents a global out look.
Of course my knowledge of the subject is limited to eavesdropped conversations. Opinions of elderly female relatives are mere paint flakes of the total picture. For the better informed, the comment box awaits your wisdom.