An independent body which promotes better parent-teacher relationships has backed Chinese as the medium of instruction in schools. A survey conducted by the association concluded most parents supported mother-tongue teaching. But Tik Chi-yuen, chairman of the Home-School Co-operation Unit, said there were still some worries the standard of English would decline. Parents were concerned that a poor command of English would hinder their children in higher education and in the job market. Mr Tik said the Education Department had failed to convince parents otherwise. He said teachers were positive about the change to Chinese but some parents still had a conservative attitude. 'Chinese schools are perceived as inferior [by many parents],' said Mr Tik. He said the Education Department should work to eliminate this elitist idea. His organisation will hold its latest seminar on Chinese as the medium of instruction on Saturday, to be attended by Director of Education Helen Yu Lai Ching-ping. Meanwhile, association members will visit Japan in October, where parent-teacher associations are long-established and highly regarded. Mr Tik said there were about 500 parent-teacher associations in Hong Kong. He said the territory should follow the example of Japan and set up an umbrella body to oversee individual associations.