Strong demand for education degrees to teach in primary schools may lead to lower standards, an educationist has warned. Professor Chung Yue-ping of Chinese University's Faculty of Education said many institutions were racing to offer BEd programmes following the Government's plan to raise the standard of teaching. He said that since the Education Report No 5 recommended that by 2007 the number of Graduate Master (GM) teachers in primary schools should reach 35 per cent from the present three or four per cent, teachers had been bombarded with advertisements for overseas courses which were often unsuitable. 'I'm worried that in their effort to get GM status, teachers would register for any programme. While competing for recruits, some institutions tend to lower requirements and make their programmes easier and shorter,' he said. 'I know of one teacher who was told by a high-calibre British institution that the programme it offered him would qualify him to teach in Hong Kong but not Britain. That doesn't sound encouraging. There seems to be two standards. Professor Chung said the Government's efforts were commendable, but believed they should be complemented with a strict policy on the quality of graduate and post-graduate degrees. He added that courses offered locally should be scrutinised.