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Brightly College for Future Forward Learning

Updated: Apr 28

Brightly College launches its future-forward learning to produce catalytic global citizens from Sri Lanka; Interview with founding principal, Andrew Fowler-Watt.


Brightly believes in a new learning culture that responds to the future’s call. Set to create outstanding young people who take on tomorrow’s challenges with intelligence, commitment and courage. Brightly College steps in where the existing education systems fall short. It’s a learning experience specifically designed to create a steady foundation of future-forward skills and traits.

Andrew Fowler-Watt, Founding Principal Brightly College

Andrew and his team at Brightly will shape and shine young minds. To be bold and bright and spread their light. At Brightly, we challenge students to explore the world through diverse cultures, science, nature, and languages, as much as technology and the arts. We believe that true education is the act of inspiring active learning and that the key to unlocking the innovative capacity of young minds is engaging their curiosity.


With Brightly, rest assured, the future is bright.


Led by celebrated educator Andrew Fowler-Watt, Brightly College is a place of learning that sounds unlike any other school in Sri Lanka.

Full and part-time education for A/L students. Traditional subjects like science, mathematics, commerce, arts&psychology offered along with other profoundly relevant subjects like law, marine science, design and tourism, music technology and more. This globally applicable life-skills centred curriculum is structured to instil creativity, innovation, critical thinking, problem-solving, risk-taking, empathy, and leadership.

Principal Andrew Fowler-Watt invites parents and students to meet him in person to understand their individual needs and explain Brightly’s unique education model that fosters diverse intelligence types.

“Sri Lankan parents will sacrifice anything before they sacrifice the education of their children,” says Andrew Fowler-Watt. The local and global education landscapes are familiar grounds to this veteran educator—a Cambridge and Eton scholar who has led many schools to success, with the most recent being Trinity College Kandy which was ranked the best school on the island at the time of his retirement. A quick Google search on him will tell you exactly how impactful Andrew’s vision on education has been throughout his impressive career. Now, he is behind a new education institute that sounds radically different to every other school in Sri Lanka. This is Brightly College.

Q: Why do you think the time is right for a school like Brightly in Sri Lanka?

It’s been the right time for many years, to be honest; but, now in particular is a time when there is a global shift in the outlook on education. Whatever happens economically, children will need to be educated in a world that is changing rapidly. Whether you want a life here in Sri Lanka or abroad, you need to have a different approach to education and to learning to survive and thrive in this new world. At Brightly, we’ll be thinking future-forward bearing in mind that most of our students will one day be doing jobs that haven’t even been invented yet.

Q: Brightly College is positioned as a future-forward school that steps in where the existing education system falls short. Could you explain this?

In many ways, the Sri Lankan education system still has much to recommend; In particular, its focus on academic rigour and discipline, and children’s pride in their schools and respect for teachers is really admirable. It’s not something you get everywhere in the world. But, that in itself isn’t enough. The world has changed. Brightly College will teach young Sri Lankans those life-skills which are not currently taught in school, but that are critical if they are to be genuinely successful in their future.

Q: What kind of learning culture and subjects can students and parents expect to find at Brightly, and how is it different from what’s already out there?

The world first talked about STEM subjects—science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Then it was about STEAM subjects with the incorporation of ‘arts’ and now at Brightly College, we’re talking about STEAM+ where the subjects are directly relevant, both academically and vocationally, to the future of Sri Lanka and the world. Imagine a place where you can choose to study subjects like marine science, travel and tourism, digital media design, global perspectives, drama or textiles along with maths, economics, humanities and sciences for A/Ls. Imagine having that kind of access to subjects that are so directly relevant, that young people are genuinely passionate about, and that can help them take charge and build their own world… This is Brightly College.

Q: You mentioned that Brightly education is a balance between time-tested systems as well as progressive new education models. Could you explain this more?

At Brightly College, you can study with us full-time or part-time. In the morning we will be offering the more traditional subjects and in the afternoon will be the new curriculum. So students can either join Brightly full-time or remain at their current school, and come to us in the afternoon to study an additional subject or two. Having a blend of interesting subjects will give students a more balanced view and also a better balanced profile which is particularly important when applying for leading overseas universities nowadays. Similarly, Brightly believes in our students developing a truly effective command of both spoken and written English as well as their mother tongue; this is very, very important. So at Brightly, we will be considering all this in our learning experience.

Q: What kind of location, tutors and networks can Brightly students access?

Being at the Colombo Innovation Tower, Brightly gives the opportunity to learn at a very vibrant and stimulating place for a young person. Brightly offers passionate leadership and intimate knowledge of the education and career landscape. All our teachers will be internationally experienced graduates, both Sri Lankan and expatriate. I personally have a deep understanding of both local and international AL and OLs, and I have links with universities across the world. Brightly College will give young people access to regular and personalised higher education and career planning. One of my main jobs as principal is to help students make the correct university and career choices.

Q: What kind of student and parent is Brightly College right for?

Brightly is for students who are excited about the future, who want to be challenged and stimulated; those who are courageous about pursuing new things and those who are curious about the world around them; and Brightly College is for parents who understand that future careers will be so diverse, different and competitive that they cannot be approached through traditional subject streams. I welcome students and their parents to get in touch with me and have an open conversation about education and what it means to prepare for the future in today’s context.

Q: Can parents and students meet you directly?

Absolutely. I’m very approachable and want to invite all parents and students to meet me personally; I like to meet students and parents both together and separately to understand what a young person is truly passionate about and to understand where they come from. I need to know each student as an individual.

Brightly College invites allparents and students to visit us for a one-on-one transformational meeting with the founding principal of Brightly College to explore possible outcomes of future- forward learning at Colombo Innovation Tower, No. 477 R A De Mel Mawatha, Colombo 4. Anytime between 9am to 4pm from Monday to Friday. For more information email admin@brightlycollege.com or contact us on 0765382000


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