People of Ceylon struggled, right from the beginning of the 20th century, to free themselves from being subject peoples they had lived for over four centuries. Patriots understood that it was the education of the younger generation which was the base of revival of the nation and worked hard towards spreading schools .In keeping with the system of the time only missionary schools had gained place in the society and it was also a quite few in number.
By the middle of the 20th century although there were a few Buddhist schools in the upcountry for children of Buddhist peasants, opportunities for English education for them were not adequate. It was under this circumstance that the Vidyartha society was originated in 1939 on the initiative of some elite headed by Sir Tikiri Bandara Panabokke, with the noble determination of educational betterment of children of upcountry peasants.In this initiative contribution made by T.B.Panabokke M.B.Panabokke ,S.LRatwatte A.C.L.Ratwatte , The First President of Sri Lanka sir William Gopallawa, Advocate T.B.Ranaraja A.B.Pinnawala,K.B.Wijekoon. R.Divithotawela, Former senator A.Rathnayake, G.D.A.Abeyrathne, Dr.L.B.Senevirathne, L.M.Koswatta,M.B.E.senevirathne, and M.B. Kulugammana Esqrs should be remembered with honour.
In order to satisfy the need then existed, of an English school ,Vidyartha society purchased the private school called King’s College which was located and functioned on a rise on Katugastota road, and formed Vidyartha College with 40 students and six teachers. The college was God- send to many children of Buddhist peasants in both Kandy and outstations.