Great debaters win on children's rights

PUBLISHED : Monday, 01 September, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 01 September, 2008, 12:00am

A team from Heep Yunn Secondary School argued their way past Diocesan Girls' School to win the Children's Rights Debate Competition organised by youth advocate Kids' Dream.

After knocking out six other secondary schools, the two finalists fiercely debated whether there should be laws against corporal punishment of children.

Heep Yunn, who argued in favour of such legislation, discussed how even the smallest amount of physical punishment could result in long-lasting psychological damage.

Diocesan Girls' School, who argued against the motion, raised concerns over enforcing such laws.

Each team was assigned motions relevant to children's rights, such as the ideal length of maternity leave and the necessity of parenting education.

'The competition forced them to research and consider issues they might not have thought about before,' said Dorothy Lui Sze-Ting of Kids' Dream.

Founded two years ago, Kids' Dream is a child-led organisation comprising youths under 18.

The group raises public awareness of the children's rights under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, which is legally-binding in many countries around the world, including Hong Kong.