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Prefects’ Body

One of the core objectives of learning at St. Joseph’s College is to produce well-rounded citizens and leaders for the country. The Prefects’ Body is the collection of student leaders of the College where concepts of leadership, brotherhood, service and Josephian values and traditions are fostered. It was established in the year 1949 during the Rectorship of Rev. Fr. Peter A. Pillai and Roland Silva was appointed as the first Head Prefect in 1950.

The Prefects’ Body is structured as such with the Board of Prefects comprising of the Head Prefect, Deputy Head Prefects and Assistant Head Prefects being appointed from Post A/L students, Senior Prefects being appointed from Grade 12 students, Senior Stewards being appointed from Post O/L students and Junior Stewards being appointed from Grade 10 students.

The Prefects’ Body plays an integral role in assisting the school administration in the day-to-day activities of the College. Their main responsibilities include the maintenance of discipline among the students, the organization of College functions and events among which the Annual Prize Giving, Inter-House Athletic Meet, Feast of St. Joseph, Teachers’ Day, Rector’s Day, Josephian Christmas Midnight Mass and Prefects’ Day are notable ones and also the representation of the College and the student body at significant events inside and outside the College. The Prefects’ Body also receive the opportunity to offer their services at the annual Feast of our Lady of Matara and take part in numerous Community Service Projects as part of their calendar events.

Over many years, the Prefects’ Body has produced outstanding and inspirational student leaders filled with Josephian values who have gone on to serve Sri Lanka and the wider global community as exceptional citizens and leaders.

Head Prefects of St. Joseph’s College, Colombo 10

  • 1950 - Roland Silva                                                                                                                    

  • 1951 - Joe Perera                                                                                                                          

  • 1952 - David Bartholomew                                                                                                         

  • 1953 - T. Don Augustine                                                                                                              

  • 1954 - Gregory Fernandopulle                                                                                                             

  • 1954/55 - Hamilton Koelmayer                                                                                                       

  • 1955/56 - Michael de Silva                                                                                                        

  • 1957/58 - Carlyle Perera                                                                                                            

  • 1958/59 - Travis Perera                                                                                                         

  • 1959/60 - Ranjan de Almeida                                                                                                      

  • 1960/61 - Vernon Halpe                                                                                                             

  • 1961/62 - Ranjit Silva                                                                                                                

  • 1962/63 - Joseph Kanagasingham                                                                                                  

  • 1963/64 - Rufus Fernando                                                                                                      

  • 1964/65 - Fredrick de Souza                                                                                                     

  • 1965/66 - Alfred Perera                                                                                                        

  • 1966/67 - Rohan Jayathilake                                                                                                           

  • 1967/68 - Lalith De S. Wijeyratne                                                                                         

  • 1968/69 - Jayantha Kurukulasooriya                                                                                         

  • 1969/70 - Rohan Perera                                                                                                      

  • 1970/71 - Martin Nicholas                                                                                                                          

  • 1972/73 - K. Suriyakumar                                                                                                              

  • 1973/74 - Ajit Alles                                                                                                                      

  • 1974/75 - Gary Melder                                                                                                                

  • 1975/76 - Amal Cabral                                                                                                                  

  • 1976/77 - Tony Singarayar                                                                                                           

  • 1977/78 - Campion Fernando                                                                                                       

  • 1978/80 - Stuart Chapman                                                                                                        

  • 1980/81 - Nirmalal Perera                                                                                                   

  • 1981/82 - Asoka Peiris                                                                                                                   

  • 1982/83 - Premil De Silva                                                                                                           

  • 1983/84 - Sampath Welgampola                                                                                                   

  • 1984/85 - Jonathan Alles                                                                                                              

  • 1985/86 - Kishan De Silva                                                                                                          

  • 1986/87 - Saliya Peiris                                                                                                                 

  • 1987/88 - Manjula Perera                                                                                                       

  • 1988/89 - Sulalith Jayasinghe                                                                                                   

  • 1989/90 - Thilaka Ranjith Kumar                                                                                               

  • 1990/91 - Shivantha Fernandopulle                                                                                      

  • 1991/92 - Previn Fernando                                                                                                            

  • 1992/93 - Nishantha Seneviratne                                                                                        

  • 1993/94 - Sanjeewa Gunasekara                                                                                                                     

  • 1994/95 - Leonid Fernando                                                                                                        

  • 1995/96 - Nilesh Fernandopulle                                                                                                     

  • 1996/97 - Shalindra Fernando                                                                                                        

  • 1997/98 - Eraj De Silva                                                                                                                      

  • 1998/99 - Chanaka Jayamaha                                                                                                     

  • 1999/2000 - Rukshan Warnakula                                                                                                   

  • 2000/01 - Hashane Senerviratne                                                                                                        

  • 2001/03  - Rajiv Ponweera                                                                                                                

  • 2003/04 - Radhik Wijesooriya                                                                                                             

  • 2004/05 - Jude Rodrigo                                                                                                                   

  • 2005/06 - Chris Fernandopulle                                                                                                      

  • 2006/07 - Geethika Cooray                                                                                                           

  • 2007/08 - Sachintha Dias                                                                                                              

  • 2008/09 - Mario Anandappa                                                                                                               

  • 2009/10/11 - Dilshan Fernando                                                                                                

  • 2011/12 - Shemal Fernando                                                                                                                    

  • 2012/13 - Russel Valentine                                                                                                            

  • 2013/14 - Kushlan Weeraisinghe                                                                                                   

  • 2014/15 - Sasanka Dassanayaka                                                                                                  

  • 2015/16 - Joshua Moraes                                                                                                               

  • 2016/17 - Raveen Antonio                                                                                                                                   

  • 2017/18 - Vivendra Ratnayake                                                                                                                  

  • 2018/19 - Vihan Udawela                                                                                                                 

  • 2019/20 - Shenal Goonawardane                                                                                                   

  • 2020/21 - Ashan De Alwis                                                                                                                    

  • 2021/22 - Janeth Fernandopulle

Year 2011/2012

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Head Prefect – Mast. Shemal Fernando

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Upendra Balasooriya

  Mast. Dulendra Wijewardane

The tenure of the Prefects for the years 2011/2012 commenced with much excitement when Mast. Shemal Fernando was appointed the Head Prefect while Mast. Upendra Balasooriya and Mast. Dulendra Wijewardanewere appointed Deputy Head Prefects, The level of spirituality experienced by everyone in the Prefects Body was indeed admirable and that eventually led to all of them working on different religious projects. The Prefects were invited to serve at the feasts of St. Anne's, Thalawila and Shrine of Our Lady of Matara, Matara.

 

The Prefects also played an active role in hosting/ organizing the Eucharistic Rally together with Several other Catholic schools.

 

The 'I CARE' initiative, the official community service programme of the Prefects, was launched by aiding a rural school in the Hambantota District. Regular physical training sessions were also Conducted on Poya Days to enhance the physical health of the Prefects.

 

Reflections 2012' was yet another large scale school event where the prefects assisted by performing their duties in an exemplary manner. The Christmas season and relevant events were organized very well, while the Christmas Mass reflected rich simplicity and the true meaning of the Season.

 

The year drew to a close with an exciting Prefects Day - Live as One', which grabbed the eyes of many participants. It was truly a pleasant sight to witness all the participants having a lot of fun and excitement.

 

It was from this batch of prefects onwards that Rev. Fr. Gemunu Dias, Vice Rector of the College took over the duties as the Priest in Charge of Prefects.

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Year 2012/2013

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Head Prefect – Mast. Russel Valentine

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Shalinda Halpe

  Mast. Praneeth Udumalagala

The year 2012/2013 was definitely an eventful and exciting tenure for the Prefects Body of the College: as they were very much active and exceptional in all of the daily duties and usual events in the College calendar, with Rev. Fr. Gemunu Dias continuing as the Priest In- Charge.
 

The '1 CARE' initiative, which is the official community service wing of the Prefects' Body was elevated to greater heights with the Prefects and Stewards serving the community through various projects. One such project was the full day cleaning of the Home for the Elders run by the Little Sisters of the Poor' situated right next door.
 

The 'I CARE' initiative, the official community service programme of the Prefects, was launched by aiding a rural school in the Hambantota District. Regular physical training sessions were also Conducted on Poya Days to enhance the physical health of the Prefects.


The batch was also instrumental in organizing its Religious Project "Gonsalvez 2013", a Sinhalese stage drama performed in Colombo for the very first time. The prefects were also invited to serve at the Feast of Our of Lady of Matara, which they fulfilled with utmost passion.


The Prefects were also involved in organizing the 'inaugural Fellowship for the Catholic Prefects of the Archdiocese involving close to 700 prefects. The event included a Mass presided by Rev. Fr. Ranjith Madurawela (General Manager - Catholic Private Schools) following which a seminar was conducted at the Bonjean Hall for all present.

 

The batch started the year with a Spiritual/ Adventure camp in Madampe, while the other training conducted covered a wide range of themes. The year ended on a high tone when TOTALITY - Where the Good becomes the Best', the Prefects' Day 2013 was magnificently held at the College premises. The event involved a great load of learning while focussing primarily on developing the soft skills of the participants through each of the challenges.

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Year 2013/2014

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Head Prefect – Mast. Kushlan Weerasinghe

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Stefan Steinwall

  Mast. Shemal Jayasinghe

The tenure of the Prefects Body for the years 2013/2014 began on the 15 October this year with the Investiture Ceremony of both the Board of Prefects and the Senior Prefects at the College Chapel. An imminent Old Josephian: Mr. Sachintha Dias who was also a past Head Prefect was the Chief Guest of this momentous occasion.

 

The football Big Match between St. Joseph's and St. Peter's was the very first Duty managed by the new appointees. The Josephian Prefects helped in a spectrum of ways from ushering to compering to maintain the smooth operation of the event St. Joseph's winning for the 5 consecutive time further added a touch of accomplishment to the minds of the prefects on their first assignment.

The Prefects played an integral role in the Rector's Day celebrations, themed ``Jesus is My Shepherd´´ to both recognize and honour the leadership of the Rector of the College: Rev. Fr. Sylvester Ranasinghe. The prefects presented a special memento to the Rector as a symbol of appreciation for the leadership given to all Josephians.


The Josephian Futsal Tournament and the Swimming Meet saw the presence of the Boys clad in shiny blue blazers performing a variety of functions to make the events befitting to the high ideals of St. Joseph's Carol Service in its 50 presentation themed Magnificat was organized with the support of the Prefects Body who were tasked with key roles in decoration and event coordination.


The Josephian Midnight mass themed "Venite Adoremus" (O Come let us adore him was the main undertaking by the Prefects Body 2013/2014 thus far. Mr. Ravi Fonseka was appointed as the Teacher in Charge of Prefects.

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Year 2014/2015

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Head Prefect – Mast. Sasanka Dasanayake

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Shavin Wasala

  Mast. Ransika Fonseka

The tenure of the Prefects’ Body for the years 2014/2015 began with much being expected of the Head Prefect, Mast. Sasanka Dasanayake, the Board of Prefects and the Senior Prefects.


The first event in the Prefects’ Body calendar was the Rector’s Day for the year 2014 which was organized by the teachers with the support of the prefects.


They also lent their support in organizing a Latin choral presentation themed “Musicam Sacram” that was held in the College Chapel.


The Josephian Carol Service themed “Gloria in Excelsis Deo” was held at the Rev. Fr. Stanley Abeysekera Auditorium with the support of the Prefects’ Body. Keeping up with tradition, the Prefects’ Body organized the Midnight Mass themed “Gloria” with the prefects giving their never-ending support to reflect the true meaning of the season to its attendees.


Perhaps the highlight of their tenure was the visit of His Holiness, Pope Francis, to Sri Lanka. Our Prefects were invited in addition to 115 student leaders to lend their support to the papal mass that was held at Galle Face Green on the 13th of January 2015.


All the other duties including the Inter-House Athletic Meet, the Annual Prize Giving and the Battle of the Saints were carried out by the prefects in an exemplary manner. Our Prefects were invited to serve at the Feast of Our Lady of Matara, which they fulfilled with utmost passion.


Finally, the year concluded on a high note with the Prefects organizing the Prefects’ Day titled ‘Convergence 2015’ at the college premises bringing together student leaders from across the country.


Special Events and Highlights of the tenure:-

  1. Investiture

  2. Choral Presentation titled “Musicam Sacram”

  3. Josephian Carol Service – “Gloria in Excelsis Deo”

  4. Midnight mass themed “Gloria”

  5. Pope’s visit to Sri Lanka – Papal Mass

  6. Matara Feast, Big Match, Prize Giving, Athletic Meet

  7. Prefects’ Day – “Convergence 2015”

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Year 2015/2016

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Head Prefect – Mast. Joshua Morais

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Srivinda Jayawardena

  Mast. Sachin Rodrigo

The Prefects’ Body 2015/16 had an active year, organising numerous events in addition to their regular work and duties at College functions and programmes.


The Prefects performed their duties at Annual College Functions such as the Prize Giving, Colours’ Nite, College Day, Rector’s Day, College Carols and was also involved in organising and assisting at liturgical events such as the Corpus Christi, Month of May Celebrations, Confirmation Service and First Holy Communion.

The Prefects in appreciation of the Academic Staff spearheaded the Annual Teachers’ Day Celebrations. They were also involved in the organising of sporting events such as the Inter House Athletic Meet, The Big Match, Limited Over Cricket Encounter, the All Island Futsal tournament (twice) and, initiated in 2016, the Relay Carnival.


The Prefects, similarly, extended their services to help in the organising of the Bible Quiz Competition, the Inter House Drama Comp and the Workers’ Day in collaboration with, respectively, the Bible Society, English Drama Society and the SVP Society.


The Prefects carried on the tradition of organising the Christmas Midnight Mass, under the theme “Veni Veni Emmanuel” (O Come O Come Emmanuel), bringing together the entire Josephian family and rendered their services at the Church Feast of Our Lady of Matara.


The Prefects’ Body also branched out into CSR projects such as providing tokens of appreciation to the minor staff at The Minor Staff Christmas get together and spending time at the “Maw Sevana” Orphanage.


As part of an initiative to enhance Prefect- student relations, “Students’ Collegiality”, a group consisting of members of the Prefects’ Body and Student community from various grades was created. In lieu of the milestone 120-year anniversary since the commencement of St. Joseph’s College, various competitions such as essay, poster and song-composing were organised by the “Students’ Collegiality” to mark this significant occasion.


One of the highlights of the year was when the Prefects hosted over 50 schools across the island, at the Prefects’ Day, where the focus was to create awareness about the Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015. The proceeds of this venture were donated to the Galle Diocese to be used for the betterment of schools within its purview. This is with the intention of keeping with SDG 04; Quality Education.


As it was important to create well-balanced Student leaders, many training programmes were organised such as ‘Leadership’ by the Sri Lanka Air Force and ‘Event Management’ by Kairos Events. Further, they had distinguished speakers such as Dayan Gunasekara and Former Head Prefect Dilshan Fernando, among others, to address the prefects. The Prefects also participated in a First Aid programme hosted by the Interact Club. Additionally, they were participants in a retreat at the Divine Retreat Centre in Kerala, India.


The Head Prefect, represented the Prefects’ Body at a luncheon at ‘Temple Trees’ hosted by President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe in 2016 to felicitate Prefects from schools around the Island.

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Year 2016/2017

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Head Prefect – Mast. Raveen Antonio

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Dihan Caldera

  Mast. Minura Manchanayake

The years 2016 and 2017 were certainly memorable in the history books of the Prefects’ Body and College. Mast. Raveen Antonio took on the role of the Head Prefect with Mast. Dihan Caldera and Mast. Minura Manchanayake being appointed as his deputies.


The first act of the newly appointed Board of Prefects was to make an amendment to the constitution of the Prefects’ Body which allowed the Assistant Head Prefects to don the black prefects’ blazer which was usually worn by the Head Prefect and the Deputy Head Prefects only.

The prefects lent their support to the Carol Service and played a key role in organizing the Annual Midnight Mass to end the 120th Jubilee year of our College in a meaningful and joyous manner.

 

‘Reflections 2017’ was another main event organized by the school to which the prefects played an influential role by doing their duties in an exemplary manner.


Our prefects were also invited to lend their support at the Catholic Bishops’ Conference held in 2016. Under the leadership of Mast. Raveen Antonio and the Board, the prefects played an active role in ensuring the events of the conference unfolded in a smooth manner.


Perhaps the largest event in the school and Prefects’ Body calendars for 2017 was the Josephian Walk which was held for the first time in eight years. The entire Prefects’ Body comprising of Junior and Senior Stewards and Senior Prefects had a key role to play mainly with regards to the security and well being of the students as well as performing basic duties for the walk and the activities after. A well-deserved break to a tiring day was given to them through the musical concert and fun activities that took place later in the College premises.


The Prefects’ Body also supported at events like the College day, the Annual Prize giving and the Rector’s Day in addition to their daily duties.


Several leadership and physical programs were organized by the Prefects’ Body for the Junior and Senior stewards as well as for the Senior Prefects to cultivate a sense of brotherhood among each other and to develop individually.


Also, it was a proud moment for College and for the Prefects’ Body as several members of the Board of Prefects passed their G. C. E Advanced Level Examination with flying colours with Mast. Vindula Perera being ranked second in the island from the Commerce stream, Mast. Dihan Caldera and Mast. Minura Manchanayake, being selected for the Medical Faculty and Mast. Raveen Antonio obtaining three distinctions in the Commerce stream.
 

Finally, the tenure came to a close with ‘Dauntless 2017’, the Prefects’ Day held in the School premises with more than 300 students coming together to take part in different activities that improved team building and leadership.

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Year 2017/2018

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Head Prefect – Mast. Vivendra Ratnayake

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Albun Croos

  Mast. Deon Wanigesinghe

The 2017/2018 year commenced with much excitement as Mast. Vivendra Ratnayake was appointed as the Head Prefect, who along with the Board of Prefects, took on thirty-three newly appointed Senior Prefects under their wing.


It was certainly an eventful year for the members with them being a pillar of strength when it came to organizing events like the Annual Carol Service, Rector’s day, the Prize Giving and the Athletic Meet. The Prefects were active and exceptional in their basic duties with the discipline of the College also being maintained at a high standard.
 

Several professional and leadership programmes were carried out with the emphasis on the development of soft skills which are deemed essential for leaders.


Despite certain shortcomings, the Midnight Mass themed “Venite Adoremus” was successfully organized by the Prefects. Their hard work and efforts put into celebrate the birth of Our Lord were rewarded by the happy faces of all who attended.


An “I – CARE” initiative, which is the official community service wing of the Prefects’ Body, was launched by the Prefects to aid the residents of “Sahana Madura”, an institute of psychotherapy. The Prefects took the time to spend some quality time with the residents of the institute and aided them by providing dry rations and daily supplies.


The Junior Stewards, Senior Stewards and Senior Prefects were successful in organizing their own CSR projects.


Several fundraisers were organized to help and provide essentials for the victims who were plagued by floods in 2018 thereby emphasizing the need for community service.


Our Prefects were privileged to be of assistance to the Silver Jubilee celebrations of Emeritus Archbishop of Colombo the Rt. Rev. Dr. Oswald Gomis, which was held at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) in 2018.


The Prefects also served at the Feast of Our Lady of Matara where they gave their untiring effort to help with the festivities.


The tenure came to a close on a high tone with “Retrograde ’18 – Honoring the past, Treasuring the present and Shaping the future”, the Prefects’ Day organized by the outgoing Prefects with the aim of reminiscing the memories made during their year of service, which was attended by student leaders around the country.

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Year 2018/2019

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Head Prefect – Mast. Vihan Udawela

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Dilushka De Mel

  Mast. John Ganegoda

The years 2018 and 2019 were packed with different activities for the entire membership, with much focus being given on team building and self-improvement. Upholding the traditional Josephian ideals, maintaining discipline at College events whether religious, social, cultural or otherwise, the readiness to respond, obey and act was the hallmark of the Prefects’ Body.


As per the tradition, the Prefects’ Body took the initiative in organizing the Annual Christmas mid-night mass which takes a special place in the events calendar of the Prefects’ body.

The Official College t-shirt was designed in view of the Big Match and the Limited over cricket encounter as a joint-fundraiser project initiated by the Prefects’ Body together with the Teachers’ guild. Generous donations were made to the Anuradhapura diocese to construct a Sunday school and to the cancer society in Colombo, from the funds that were raised.


However, the activities of the Prefects’ Body were led to a temporary hold with the tragic Easter attacks that took place on the 21st of April 2019, that had all schools in the island closed for over two weeks. Together with the priestly community and representatives of the Old Boys Union, the Board of Prefects were part of a security council where new standard operating procedures and Emergency management plans were discussed and established. The Prefects’ Body was later instrumental in performing security duties to ensure the safety of students in College once it was re-opened.


Three members of the Prefects’ Body including the Head Prefect and two Senior Prefects along with the College librarian, Mr. Sudath represented College at the launching of the two books ‘Polonnaruwa; Narapathi Yugaye Sita Janapathi Yugaya Dakwa’ an academic research-based volume and ‘Moragahakanda Dream Reservoir’, a book on the multipurpose project, which was held at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) under the patronage of the former President Maithripala Sirisena in July 2019.


Once again, the prefects of our college were blessed to be part of the Annual Feast of Our Lady of Matara. Our members also supported the College feast, College carols, Rector's Day, Teachers’ Day, Children's Day, Prize Giving and all the College's other religious festivals.


Few of the key events which the Prefects’ Body assisted in organizing were the Farewell ceremonies of our former Rector, Rev. Fr. Travis Gabriel and our former Vice Rector, Rev. Fr. Anton Ranjith and the Welcome ceremony of our present Rector and Vice Rector, Rev. Fr. Ranjith Andradi and Rev. Fr. Ruwan Deshapriya.
 

The Prefects’ Body reached the finish line with the hosting of the Prefects’ Day themed ‘Invictus’ where over 250 students from schools located in and around Colombo participated. Last but not least, the Prefects’ office was fully refurbished using funds received from donors and part of the funds raised for the Prefects’ Day.

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Year 2019/2020

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Head Prefect – Mast. Shenal Goonewardena

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Mario Wellalage

  Mast. Bevindu Dassanayake

The new tenure for the years 2019 and 2020 brought forward new challenges and obstacles for the Prefects’ Body of St. Joseph’s College as the Covid-19 pandemic swept through the lives of the people of this world. The public had to adapt to the concept of ‘social distancing’ and the use of face masks to protect the yourself and the ones around you.

Due to this situation, several events in the normal calendar year had to be cancelled as curfew was imposed on several areas of the country in order to stop the spread of the deadly virus. Events such as the College Feast and the Prefects’ Day were not organized as a result.


Nevertheless, the members were given the opportunity to organize the Christmas Midnight Mass which is a tradition for the Prefects’ Body. They also had the opportunity to organize and perform their duties at the annual carol service, the Inter-House Athletic Meet, the Josephian Colours day, the annual prize giving, the Joe- Pete Annual Cricket encounter, and the confirmation ceremony.


The Board of Prefects and the Senior Prefects were given the blessing to serve at the Feast of Our Lady of Matara which is an important event in the calendar of the Prefects’ Body.


The pandemic brought along the realization that every person needs each other and it is important that a helping hand is lent when in need. With this thought in mind, the members of the Prefects’ Body hosted a virtual concert themed ‘HOPE’ which was held in aid of collecting funds to support the supportive staff of our college during the difficult time of the pandemic.


It is important that the Stewards and Senior Prefects are trained in various aspects of leadership. A leadership training program was organized for the Prefects’ Body with renowned speakers, Mr. Fahad Farook and Miss Bernadine Jayasinghe being invited as guest speakers.


The Prefects also participated in a Tree planting project which was held at Crow Island beach, organized by the Lion’s Club of Modara/Mattakuliya.

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Year – 2020/2021

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Head Prefect – Mast. Ashan De Alwis

Deputy Head Prefects – Mast. Janith Kaluarachchi

  Mast. Aaron Kohombanwickramage

Although termed as the years 2020 and 2021, the Prefects’ Body under Mast. Ashan De Alwis; who would have the honor of serving their Alma Mater in her 125th year, was invested on the 4th of February, 2021 in the heights of the COVID-19 pandemic without the participation of the entire school assembly in accordance with the prevailing health regulations.

This year would become to be incomparable with any previous year as the COVID-19 pandemic, health and safety regulations, lockdowns, quarantines, closure of schools and the economic and political instabilities prevalent at the time, created a year full of unprecedented challenges. Yet, despite the nature of the year which they faced, the Prefects’ Body delivered a remarkable and successful year; the key to this being adaptability as daily duties, the  maintenance of discipline, meetings and events of the online and physical nature had to be re-imagined to suit the needs of the prevailing times.

Soon after their investiture; the Prefects’ Body organized the Farewell Ceremony of Rev. Fr. Ruwan Deshapriya and the Welcoming Ceremony of Rev. Fr. Sudham Perera.  The 125th Anniversary Eucharistic Celebration was held on the 2nd of March, 2021; the historic occasion being celebrated with the participation of representatives of the Josephian Family as the full scale Jubilee Celebrations would have to be postponed to the following year due to the Pandemic. The Feast of St. Joseph in both 2021 and 2022 were also organized by the Prefects’ Body.

With the appointment of Rev. Fr. Sudham Perera as the Priest-in-Charge of the Prefects’ Body and under the guidance of Mr. Ravi Fonseka and Mrs. Pushpa Perera; the respective Master and Teacher-in-Charge; the Prefects’ Body reached heights that were unimaginable at the start of the year. As an islandwide lockdown was imposed in April and with schools being closed, the Prefects’ Body rose to the challenge and adapted holding General Meetings virtually. A series of motivational interviews featuring prominent Old Josephians; “The Extra Mile”, was held online to reach out to and inspire the students who were at their homes. The Marian Feast was organized and celebrated online and the Stewards’ Interviews were held virtually for the very first time with the objective of involving them in the activities of the Prefects’ Body without delay until a formal Investiture could be held.

The concept of reaching out to the students virtually was embraced by the entire College; the Prefects’ Body would go on to organize a daily recitation of the Rosary for the Josephian Family with the Legion of Mary in the months of May and September. Virtual Meetings were held regularly during this period and the Prefects’ Body joined for a Rosary Recitation once every week to uphold their spirituality as well. While the Prefects could not serve at the Feast of our Lady of Matara this year due to the imposition of a new lockdown in September; they still upheld their connection to it by organizing a Virtual Celebration of the Feast for the Josephian Family. The Prefects’ Body also took part in the United Nations “Global Week” campaign for Sustainable Development Goals and a special informative programme on “Catholic Apologetics” organized by the College, while a unique Virtual Teachers’ Day Celebrations was organized by the Prefects’ Body on behalf of the entire Student community to pay tribute to all the Teachers who had resolutely dedicated themselves to the online teaching system during these difficult times. An important responsibility; the Coordination of the Vaccination Programmes for the students of Grades 6 and above; the first step to re-open College was also successfully handled by the Prefects’ Body.

As schools re-opened in the month of November, physical events such as the Stewards’ Investiture, Re-Opening of the Refurbished Sports Complex, Farewell Ceremony of Rev. Fr. Sharm Dassanayake and First Holy Communion and Confirmation Services were organized navigating all health guidelines and Covid-19 concerns. The Prefects’ Body supported the Choir to organize the Christmas Carols Service and then they delivered their magnum opus; the Josephian Christmas Midnight Mass under the theme “Veni Veni Emmanuel” which was celebrated in the Auditorium due to the ongoing renovation of the College Chapel.

January began the final cycle of the year, but it was here on that the Prefects’ Body outdid all expectations. “Arcadia: A Sustainable Inheritance”; a panel discussion to raise awareness on Sustainable Development Goals was organized in the Bonjean Hall by the Batch of Junior Stewards; the first project of such a scale to be organized by a Junior Steward Batch. The inaugaral Founders’ Day Ceremony was another historic event which was organized to pay tribute to the pioneering efforts of the Founding Fathers of the College. The Joe-Pete Prefects’ Get-Together was also held at the College premises; with the Prefects’ Bodies of both schools coming together to celebrate their common values and brotherhood; competing for the newly established “Silva-Paternott Challenge Trophy”; named after the first Head Prefects of both schools.

The most remarkable achievement would have to be the Prefects’ Day; “Carpe Diem ‘22”, which was held in the College premises with the participation of more than 250 student leaders from across the country under the slogan “Believe. Conquer. Inspire.”. It was a landmark achievement as it was the first physical Prefects’ Day to be held in the country after a lapse of almost 2 years due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Following this the Prefects’ Body organized and lended their support to the Teachers’ Silver Jubilee Celebrations and the Lenten Choral Programme while they were also involved in the response to the unfortunate fire which broke out in the Bonjean Hall in the latter stages of April. The Prefects’ Body would go on to serve for an extended period of one year and 3 months; as the postponement of the A/L Examinations and prevailing political and economic instability in the country would require the investing of the new batch to be delayed until the 29th of April, 2022. During the year, due to the COVID-19 Pandemic annual events such as the Prize Giving and Sports Meet were unable to be held while the Big Match was held behind closed doors without the participation of crowds.

Thus, the Prefects’ Body for the years 2020/21 were able to have a successful tenure despite numerous challenges displaying resilience, adaptability and true Josephian Spirit. Working closely with the Community of Priests and Academic and Non-Academic Staffs they were able to perform a yeoman service to help the College get through this challenging period. It is worth noting that the brotherhood among all batches and members in the Prefects’ Body was strengthened in the face of the adversity which they faced, and this played a huge part in the ultimate success of the year.

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