Posts Tagged ‘education’
Contract teachers in Hong Kong’s schools do much the same jobs as permanent teachers and are usually paid far less. They are also often given one-year contracts, which leads to a lack of job security. Varsity learns more.
Lego has been a popular toy for generations of children. Its manufacturer and fans say the bricks encourage creativity. But more and more Lego products are now theme and even gender specific – some are based on blockbuster entertainment franchises. Does this hinder children’s creativity?
With a surge in the number of PhD graduates and scarce job opportunities in academia, local PhD graduates are finding it harder to find research and teaching jobs in universities. Varsity hears how they can often be at a disadvantage to holders of overseas doctorates.
Today, lecturer Li Chun-hong teaches humanities to university students, but things could have turned out very differently. Li spent some of his childhood years shoplifting, fighting and hanging out with triads. Education turned his life around and now Li hopes he can help other young lives.
He weaves life into stories and stories into life. Varsity talks to Yuen Che-hung, better known as storyteller Uncle Hung, who takes us on a journey from his firebrand days as a teenage rebel in San Po Kong to what he sees as the utopian world of occupied Admiralty.
As more and more schools choose to teach Chinese in Putonghua, many local teachers and teachers-to-be fear they will be passed over for teachers who speak Putonghua as their mother tongue. There are signs that some schools would rather hire native Putonghua speakers to teach Chinese even if they have no university training in Chinese language. But should this really be a criterion for picking Chinese teachers?
The traditional view of sex education in schools focuses on avoiding unplanned pregnancies and abstinence. But many young people, educators, public health experts and social workers increasingly believe it should also cover topics such as safe sex, sexuality, sexual orientation and self-esteem. Ironically the flexibility given to schools on how the teach sex education may be a hindrance to an open discussion of these issues.
Some Hong Kong parents pay high school fees to let their children have an international education in the city’s international schools but at one government-aided primary school in Mid-levels, local and expatriate pupils learn with and from each other in a setting that mixes local and international elements. Varsity meets and teachers and children of this multicultural school.
After years of being seen as politically apathetic, increasing numbers of Hong Kong’s young people are participating in social movements and doing so at a younger age than in the past. Some have suggested this could be partly due to the introduction of Liberal Studies as a compulsory school subject in 2009. Varsity asks students and teachers what they make of the suggestion and talks to the critics who claim the subject is too political and too biased.
More than 170 school buildings are standing abandoned and idle across Hong Kong, even as the increasing number of cross-border students has led to a shortage of school places in parts of the New Territories. There have been calls for the government to reopen some school buildings to ease the pressure, and also to provide much needed community spaces. But as Varsity learns, attempts to put the buildings to use are mired in red-tape.