School deadline to go unchanged
THE deadline for schools to decide which language to teach in will not be extended even though introduction of the controversial Target and Target-related Assessment Scheme has been delayed.
The Secretary for Education and Manpower, Mr John Chan Cho-chak, said the Government saw no need to extend the deadline beyond September next year, and would continue to encourage children to learn in their mother tongue.
Mr Chan, attempting to allay concern that the move would heighten the belief that schools which teach in English are better than those teaching in Chinese, said proficiency in Chinese was a requirement for applicants to most civil service posts and tertiary institutions.
Bridging courses would be introduced this year to help students improve their English to meet tertiary institution requirements.
United Democrat Mr Cheung Man-kwong said the Government was being contradictory by encouraging students to choose Chinese-medium schools while classifying them by an aptitude test.
Mr Chan said the test was not designed for determining whether to send students to Chinese or English schools, but to give parents and schools information on students' performance.