Poor children's dismal summer

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 24 July, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 24 July, 2012, 12:00am


Under the new 3+3+4 curriculum, students are encouraged to explore their interests both inside and outside the classroom. But such explorations come with a price tag.

A survey by the Alliance for Children Development Rights shows many children from poor families lack the opportunities that their better-off peers have.

In June, the alliance interviewed 208 low-income families, including those on social welfare, about summer plans for their children.

The survey shows that more than half (51.4 per cent) of children will not have any summer activities because their families are not able to afford the expenses.

A summer course for children costs less than HK$1,000. Yet that relatively meagre amount is out of reach for people living on welfare.

'Poor families should not have to make the bitter choice between buying food and paying for summer activities,' said Kaki Lam Man-wa, a community organiser working for the alliance.

One in five parents interviewed said they felt bad about not being able to arrange summer activities for their children. The alliance has called on the government to help.