S. Thomas' Preparatory School

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S.Thomas' Preparatory School
St.thomas Prep Logo.jpg
Main Gate of S. Thomas' Prep School

Coordinates6°55′0.6″N 79°50′50.4″E / 6.916833°N 79.847333°E / 6.916833; 79.847333Coordinates: 6°55′0.6″N 79°50′50.4″E / 6.916833°N 79.847333°E / 6.916833; 79.847333
MottoThe Lord Is My Shepherd
Established17 May 1938 (17 May 1938)
HeadmasterNihal Fernando
Colour(s)Dark blue, light blue and white    
AffiliationChurch of Ceylon, S. Thomas' College, Mount Lavinia

S. Thomas' Preparatory School is a private, Anglican, multi-ethnic, primary and secondary day school for boys aged 5 to 16 years, located in Kollupitiya in the Colombo District of the Western Province of Sri Lanka.

The school was founded on 17 May 1938 as a branch preparatory school of S. Thomas' College, Mount Lavinia. It is governed by the Board of Governors of S. Thomas' College of the Church of Ceylon. The school is amongst the elite schools of Sri Lanka and is affiliated with the three other Thomian schools and colleges administered by the Church of Ceylon.[1]


S. Thomas' Preparatory School was founded on 17 May 1938 by William Thomas Keble, the school's first headmaster,[2] while Sri Lanka was under British colonial rule. Keble was an eminent British scholar, author, educationalist, and an alumnus of Keble College, Oxford, which was named after his maternal great-uncle John Keble. He arrived in Ceylon in 1928 to join the staff of S. Thomas' College, Mt. Lavinia, during the tenure of warden Kenneth McPherson.[3][4]

He was the author of several books, including Ceylon, Beaten Track, A History of St. Thomas' College, Colombo, and Astrapani: A Romance of Sigiriya, a novel based on Sigiriya. The school was the first preparatory school to be established in Sri Lanka based on the English public School model.

The institution, which commenced with a student population of 95 boys and a staff of seven teachers, currently has a student population of 975 and over 100 staff members. At first, the school only accepted students between the ages of 5 and 11 years, as its founding fathers sought to remedy a conceptual void in the educational system by placing a new emphasis on the requirements and aspirations of younger children to be educated and to be allowed to express their creative talents and faculties unfettered and unhampered by older and more mature students. Nevertheless, over the years the school began accepting older students, and currently has classes up to Grade 11 in preparation for the GCE Ordinary Level exam.

School Administration[edit]

The school is governed by the Anglican Church of Ceylon. It is classified as a private fee levying school and is not financially dependent on the government. It is administered by a Board of Governors (established by the S. Thomas' College Board of Governors Ordinance No. 7 of 1930) of which the chairman is the Bishop of Colombo, thereby retaining a connection between the church and the school. The day-to-day activities are managed by the headmaster. The school has a sectional head for the Upper, Middle, and Primary schools.

Rev. Dushantha L. Rodrigo, who assumed duties on 1 January 2015, and was officially inducted as Headmaster of the school on 26 January 2015, at a special ceremony held at the school premises.[5]


  1. W. T. Keble (1938–1942) (Founder)[6]
  2. N. G. Abeynaike (1943–1950) (First Headmaster )
  3. J. T. R. Perinpanayagam (June 1951 - August 1966)
  4. J. S. L. Fernando (September 1966 - 1994)
  5. N. Y. Casie Chetty (1995 - December 2014)
  6. Dushantha Rodrigo (2015 – January 2021)
  7. Nihal Fernando (February 2021 – Present)


The student population is in excess of 900 students, aged 5 to 16 years, although the roll has declined from its peak of around 1100 students in the year 2000. The students come from diverse ethnic backgrounds (Sinhala, Tamil and Moor amongst others). The four main faiths practiced by the students of the school, in descending order of frequency, are Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Islam. The majority of students live in the suburbs of Colombo.


Flags of S. Thomas' Preparatory School, Kollupitiya displayed at a school walk

The school comprises an assembly hall, over 50 class rooms, a chapel, a computer laboratory, two music rooms, three art rooms, two playing fields, two basketball courts and a cafeteria. The school has separate laboratory facilities for science, electronics, and mechanical technology.

House system[edit]

Students are allocated into four houses:

  • Abeynaike: is named after the school's first headmaster, Norman Gray Abeynaike. The house colour is Green.  
  • Carpenter-Garnier: named after the sixth Bishop of Colombo, Carpenter-Garnier, who was Lord Bishop in 1938 when the school was founded. The house colour is Blue.  
  • De Saram: is named after Canon R. S. De Saram who was Warden of S. Thomas' College, Mount Lavinia when the school was founded and the first manager of the school . The house colour is Red.  
  • Keble: is named after the school's founder, William Thomas Keble. The house colour is Yellow.  

The houses compete against each other in many sporting events throughout the year. An athletics championship held each year in February, facilitates students in each of the houses to compete in athletic events.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "S. Thomas' Preparatory School - Old Boys Union - The School". www.prepobu.lk. Retrieved 2017-03-21.
  2. ^ "Past Headmasters". stcb.edu.lk. Retrieved 2018-12-16.
  3. ^ "S. Thomas' Preparatory School - Old Boys Union - The School". www.prepobu.lk. Retrieved 2017-03-21.
  4. ^ Delmar, Shalom. "St. Thomas' Preparatory School, Kollupitiya". www.dioceseofcolombo.lk. Retrieved 2017-03-21.
  5. ^ "Rev. Dushantha Rodrigo appointed new Headmaster of S. Thomas' Prep". Daily FT. Wijeya Newspapers. 22 January 2015. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  6. ^ "Headmasters" (PDF).