Sithmi Edirisinghe achieves 2nd place in the country at the G.C.E Advanced Level examinations, Arts stream.
The following is Sithmi’s own testimony on how her formative years at RIS helped her to be where she is today.
My school, Royal International School, has made me who I am today. When I first started school, I was a mousy little five-year-old with no sense of the challenges that the world had in store for me. I remember being shy, scared and timid. But under the love and guidance of all our amazing teachers, RIS became a second home. My friends became a second family. The uniform we all wore made us equals. We belonged to a single, tight-knit family with no barriers between us. My time in the primary school were some of the best years of my life. As kids, we were never spoon fed at school. We were taught what is right, and what is wrong and we were made to stand our own two feet. The teachers around me were as tough as they were compassionate. They were all big-hearted, magnanimous, patient and kind. But at the same time, they were also quick to point out my faults and help me correct them.
My teachers always brought out the best in me. I remember one of my English teachers noticing that I used to sketch down ideas for stories in the back of my notebooks. She encouraged me to read more and to actually start writing. We had an excellent library, both in the primary school and the secondary school and we were continuously encouraged to make use of it. The library was probably my favourite place in the entire school. I spent numerous hours there, reading everything ranging from comics to encyclopedias. The writing skills I started developing then helped me immensely when I was doing my Advanced Levels. RIS gave the opportunity to recognize what I’m good at and to improve myself, and I know that it has done the same to all of my friends as well.
The virtues of hard work, discipline, commitment and dedication were instilled in me during my time in RIS. We were taught the value of healthy competition and that extra-curricular were just as important as academics. Every Friday afternoon, after a week of schoolwork, we had clubs which we could join – ranging from chess to badminton to cookery and much more. The life skills I learned in those clubs still come in handy today. All the concerts, talent shows and exhibitions we took part in fond memories in my mind.
Academics were given prominence, of course. The work that we did in class and all the tough exams that we had to face made burn the midnight oil and taught me to be dedicated. My teachers laid the foundation for me to be successful in the future. They were all dedicated and passionate about teaching us, and they worked incredibly hard to improve our knowledge and give us the best education we could hope for.
Ten years in RIS has moulded me into an independent and self-reliant person who is ready to take on the world and it the challenges it brings. As I look back at my time in my school, I feel immensely grateful to all those amazing people in RIS who helped me spread my wings and become a better, stronger person. I conclude with a humble thank you to all the teachers and all the members of the school management who taught me and nurtured me through the years. They truly made a difference in my life and I hope they get the opportunity to do so for the students of RIS for years and years to come.