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SED: Education system needs to cater for diverse learning needs (with photos)

     The Secretary for Education (SED), Mr Eddie Ng Hak-kim, today (March 1) led a delegation from the Hong Kong education sector to attend the International Convention on Science of Learning in Shanghai.

     The International Convention was co-organised by the National Science Foundation (USA), the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, in collaboration with the University of Hong Kong, the East China Normal University and the Shanghai Normal University.

     Led by the SED, the delegation today took part in the whole-day Science of Learning Symposium, listening to over 10 prominent learning scientists from around the world sharing their expertise in different aspects of learning, including social influences on learning; language, bilingualism and multicultural learning; and technologies for learning.  

     Noting Hong Kong's achievements in the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012 in which Hong Kong students' performances ranked second, second and third in reading, science and mathematics respectively among the 65 participating countries/regions, Mr Ng said that the Government has all along put much emphasis on both the quality and equality of the education system.

     "The PISA found that Hong Kong students' socio-economic status seems to have less effect on their performance as compared with other participating countries/regions.  It suggested that Hong Kong has done relatively well in providing education opportunities with high quality and high equity for all students, which in turn facilitates social mobility.

     "However, we should not be complacent but continue to do more to cater for the overall and individual needs of students, especially in the fast-changing and highly competitive world," he added.

     In this connection, both the Policy Address and the Budget this year have set out visionary education initiatives to support the needy, enable the youth to flourish and unleash their potential based on their own ability and needs, such as extra funding for pre-primary to post-secondary education as well as vocational and continuing education, additional support for ethnic minorities, and the introduction of the Fourth Strategy on Information Technology in Education.

     Mr Ng believed that the Symposium today could provide valuable insights for the delegation to share with other members of the education sector and engage them in taking forward the new education initiatives for the betterment of the education services in Hong Kong.
     Other members of the delegation included the Deputy Secretary for Education, Dr Catherine K K Chan; Member of the Committee on Professional Development of Teachers and Principals as well as Member of the Curriculum Development Council (CDC), Professor Hau Kit-tai; Member of the Standing Committee on Language Education and Research, Professor Chan Shui-duen; Member of the Committee on Free Kindergarten Education, Dr Maggie Koong; Convenor of the Hong Kong Principals' Institute, Dr Anissa Chan; Chairperson of the Chief Executive's Award for Teaching Excellence Teachers Association and Chairperson of the CDC Committee on Science Education, Mr Lau Kwok-leung; and the Secretary General of the Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority, Dr Tong Chong-sze.

     During his stay in Shanghai, the SED also met with some Hong Kong business and community leaders, and students studying in local universities to learn about their daily life and update them on this year's Policy Address and Budget initiatives.

Ends/Saturday, March 1, 2014
Issued at HKT 17:03


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