Looking forward to less cramming

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 21 October, 2004, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 21 October, 2004, 12:00am

Jao Tsz-chun is only 11 years old, but he already likes the look of the curriculum he'll be studying in four years. 'I would be more interested in liberal studies because compared to the old subjects, there's less cramming involved,' he said yesterday.

His father, Raymond Jao Ming, chairman of the Federation of Parent Teacher Associations of Hong Kong in Eastern District, said the proposals were generally good.

'Scrapping the Hong Kong Certificate of Education Examination and the Advanced Level Examination is the best part of the reform. It's too much to have two public exams,' said the father of three.

'All I'm concerned about is whether the reforms will be implemented according to plan, because my son does not want to have to take two public exams and I don't want him to either.'

Mr Jao also liked the idea of liberal studies being compulsory. 'A lot of subjects students are studying now are useless, for example, applied mathematics. They will never use it in the future. Liberal studies, on the other hand, can improve analytical thinking,' he said.

An increase in school fees would not diminish Mr Jao's enthusiasm for the new system. 'We must be practical. The fees are not increasing a lot,' he said. 'But the government must take measures to help the less well-off, because they might not be able to afford an extra $1,000 a year.'