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SED: HK dedicated to enhancing students' abilities

    The Secretary for Education, Mr Michael Suen, today (June 11, Peru time) attended the fourth Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation's Education Ministerial Meeting (AEMM) in Peru.

    At the meeting's plenary session this morning, participating member economies discussed efforts to cultivate and enhance students' whole-person development and mastery of competencies to meet the needs of the 21st century. Discussion centred around four priority areas - mathematics and science; career and technical education; language learning; information and communication technologies and systemic reform.

    Mr Suen said that Hong Kong was dedicated to enhancing students' critical and exploratory thinking, self-confidence, team spirit, all-round development and life-long learning capability.

    Touching on language learning, Mr Suen said that Hong Kong regarded it as important to enable students to be proficient in both Chinese and English.

    "We fully recognise that teacher quality is critical to enhancing learning of English," he added.

    Hong Kong has implemented a basket of measures to improve the quality of the language teaching force, including upgrading entry qualifications of new language teachers, encouraging serving language teachers to upgrade their professional qualifications, as well as having a scheme to hire native-speaking English teachers.

    On mathematics and science, Mr Suen noted that the focus in Hong Kong's curricula was to enhance students' creativity and critical thinking, cultivate their positive values and attitudes, and equip them with the capability to inquire and solve problems in daily life.

    He said that Applied Learning courses to be offered under the new senior secondary academic structure would provide a broad and balanced curriculum for students and was in line with the views raised in discussions on career and technical education at the conference.

    Mr Suen took the opportunity to have a meeting with the Mainland's Vice-Minister of Education, Mr Zhang Xin-Sheng, who led the Chinese delegation to the conference.

Ends/Thursday, June 12, 2008
Issued at HKT 17:45


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