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LCQ8: Cross-boundary students
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    Following is a question by the Hon Cheung Man-kwong and a written reply by the Secretary for Education, Mr Michael Suen, in the Legislative Council today (October 17):

Question:

     Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the respective numbers, in each grade of kindergartens, primary and secondary schools in each of the past three and the current school years, of the students traveling across the boundary every day to attend school in Hong Kong, together with a breakdown by the boundary crossings used and the districts in which their schools are located; and

(b) whether it will consider providing point-to-point school bus services at each crossing; if it will, of the details and implementation timetable; if not, the reasons for that?

Reply:

Madam President,

(a) In respect of the cross-boundary students who are Hong Kong residents but are residing in Shenzhen and attending schools in Hong Kong, the numbers of such students in each level in each of the past three and the current school years based on the information provided by schools are as follows:

             Number of Cross-boundary Students
School Year Kindergarten  Primary  Secondary   Total
2004/[email protected]       733         2 589      481      3 803
2005/[email protected]       962         2 998      538      4 498
2006/[email protected]       797         2 878      799      4 474
2007/08*     1 456         3 466      937      5 859

@ The statistics are provided by schools in the districts of Tai Po, North District and Yuen Long.
* The statistics are provided by schools in the districts of Tai Po, North District, Yuen Long and Tuen Mun.

     Starting from the current school year, the Education Bureau (EDB) collects statistical data on the number of cross-boundary students crossing various boundary areas to attend schools in Hong Kong. As at September 2007, the numbers of related cross-boundary students are as follows:

            Location of Schools Attended  Number of
             Tai Po  North   Yuen  Tuen   Students
                    District Long   Mun   Passing the
                                          Boundary
                                          Area
Via
Lo Wu        200    3 337      8     0      3 545
Sha Tau Kok*  34    1 173      0     0      1 207
Lok Ma Chau   33      662    353     0      1 048
Shenzhen Bay   2       10      6    27         45
Man Kam To     1       13      0     0         14
Total        270    5 195    367    27      5 859

* Mainly those students studying in schools inside the Sha Tau Kok Closed Area and those with Sha Tau Kok indigenous resident status.

(b) The Administration is very concerned about the arrangements for the students traveling across the boundary every day to attend schools in Hong Kong, and will introduce complementary measures to facilitate these students where practicable. In the longer term, we consider it more desirable to make use of cross-boundary coaches to provide service for such students. In this connection, the EDB and the relevant departments are assisting the schools concerned and the cross-boundary coach operators to study the feasibility of introducing cross-boundary school coach service as well as the related arrangements. Since the cross-boundary school coach service involves complicated issues, such as route coverage in the Mainland, coach fare, provision of escort on board, etc, the EDB will follow up the matter closely, hoping that the service could be available at the earliest possible instance.

Ends/Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Issued at HKT 14:00

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