A $10 million government fund has been set up to encourage training schools to seek accreditation for their post-secondary programmes from professional bodies.
The two-year funding will subsidise the education bodies in seeking accreditation from 10 statutory professional bodies such as the Law Society, Medical Council and the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers.
But Chan Cheuk-hay, principal of the Hong Kong College of Technology, a non self-accrediting body, said the funding was not enough as each institute had to spend about $3 million for accreditation.
The scheme started yesterday, with grants being provided on a first-come-first-served basis. The grant will cover half the accreditation cost.
Applicants must be non-profit-making institutes providing self-financing post-secondary programmes leading to higher diplomas, associate degrees or professional diplomas.
'The scheme will encourage non-government-funded education providers to seek accreditation that can give assurance to the quality of their programmes,' a spokesman for the Education and Manpower Bureau said.
Dr Alex Chan Siu-kun, vice-president of the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers, welcomed the move, saying it could give better quality assurance for the sub-degree programmes run by non-government-funded higher education institutions.
Law Society president Herbert Tsoi Hak-kwong said accreditation could help improve the quality of service in the profession. 'We hope the accredited programmes can train better legal staff for our members,' he said.