The novel form of 'distance learning' adopted by the two young abode seekers to keep up with their studies has left their parents with mobile phone bills of up to $800 a month. But the parents of Po-kwan and Chi-sheung insist it is a price worth paying as the phone calls give their children a link to an education - and to their friends. Their mother, Ho Wu Xianwen, said: 'Their classmates call them every day without fail, telling them every little thing about their school lives.' The children's father, Ho Yun-keung, said they mostly used a mobile phone to keep in touch with their friends, as their Shenzhen home was located in a place where they could use the Hong Kong mobile phone network - a connection which saves them hefty long-distance fees. Mr Ho said his children spent an average of two to three hours on the phone every day, giving them a bill of about $800 a month. 'Other than discussing their schoolwork, they also have their small talk. But I don't blame them for spending so much time on the phone as I feel so guilty for not being able to give them an education - a very basic need for a child to have,' he said. Mr Ho, who works in Hong Kong, said he also had to rely on the phone to stay in touch with his family. Mrs Ho said they were grateful for the support of the children's teachers and schoolmates, and for the help of a concern group, the Society for Community Organisation. 'My children feel it all in their hearts. They have tasted both bitterness and sweetness,' she said. 'It's been like one big lesson in life.'