The establishment of the Quality Education Development Fund was vital to the future of education in the SAR, those at a special forum were told. More than 500 educationists attended the event, organised by the Hiphang Development Programme of the Hong Kong Institute of Education (HKIEd) and the Hong Kong Educational Research Association. Education Commission chairwoman Rosie Young Tse- tse said the fund could be accessed by all educational bodies. Money could be used to develop creative projects, extra-curricular activities, staff-development plans, awards for outstanding schools, and educational research. Professor Young said that in addition to a $5 billion injection for the fund, the Government planned to set up a committee to screen applications, define standards, evaluate funding, and provide advisory and support services. Cheng Yin-cheong, Director of the HKIEd Centre for Research and Development, said the fund should be used to help schools nurture a culture of quality learning. It also could encourage creativity and provide a system for disseminating applied knowledge, Professor Cheng said. Other speakers at the forum included CCC Kei Faat Primary School principal Fung Man- ching and SKH Mok Sau Chun Secondary School head Chan Wong Lai-kuen. The Hiphang Development Programme falls under the umbrella of the HKIEd's Department of Educational Management and Professional Support. Its aims include establishing communications between the 14 primary schools in the group, pushing educators to address their own problems, and organising responses to these issues. Those attending the forum also were encouraged to express their hopes and concerns about education in the SAR. Their questions about the fund were answered by the experts.