Letters to the Editor, July 21, 2017

PUBLISHED : Friday, 21 July, 2017, 4:53pm
UPDATED : Friday, 21 July, 2017, 4:53pm

Curriculum is too narrow in local schools

I agree with students who responded to a Polytechnic University survey (“Hong Kong secondary school pupils feel let down by curriculum, study shows”, July 7).

A main cause of stress is that their future is determined by just one public exam (Diploma of Secondary Education).

To get a coveted place at a university, they have to concentrate solely on their academic studies. This means that other areas of learning that might interest them are shelved as they concentrate on doing well in tests and exams.

The government should change the curriculum and make it more wide-ranging so that youngsters do not have to just concentrate on exams. They need to be able to have life experiences and interact with the community.

For example, some schools have an annual hunger-awareness day where pupils skip meals. This helps them to appreciate the problems many people have with hunger in famine-stricken parts of the world. More schools should do this. They also need to have career workshops to help students plan their ­future, with intern programmes so youngsters can get work experience.

These life experiences are important. School should not just be about memorising what is in a textbook.

Teresa Ng, Hang Hau

Pacquiao fight with Horn not the best option

Earlier this month, Manny Pacquiao lost his WBO welterweight title to Jeff Horn in Brisbane, Australia, with the judges ruling in Horn’s favour after 12 rounds. The Filipino fighter has called for a rematch with the unheralded Australian, later this year, to give him a chance to recapture his title, but I do not think that is a good idea.

I believe it would be far better for Pacquiao to first fight the ­former world champion, Amir Khan from Britain, before considering a rematch in Brisbane.

K. M. Nasir, Mid-Levels

Real cricket fan should manage channels

I entirely agree with Dr Martin Williams (“Now TV’s test cricket offering substandard”, July 19).

Because of this, I and many of my friends have been discouraged from subscribing to Now TV’s cricket package. There is a lot of good-quality cricket globally. However, Now TV does not seem to be interested in showing it, but it just wants your money in the form of subscriptions.

It needs to appoint someone who really cares about the sport to manage the channels which show cricket, who will know what fans really want to see.

A. L. Nanik, Tsim Sha Tsui

Angered by dictatorial cartoon ban

China has banned Winnie the Pooh because President Xi Jinping (習近平) does not like bloggers comparing him to the cute ­cartoon character.

This is a dictatorial attitude to take. Xi is not paying attention to the opinions of other Chinese citizens. His priority seems to be the protection of his fame and so he has approved the ban on Winnie the Pooh.

Basically, if the central government takes exception to something, such as a book, an article, or film, it slaps on a ban.

It has already imposed a ban on online social media platforms which are popular in the West, such as Facebook.

This means that citizens are deprived of the right of freedom of speech. Beijing is afraid that allowing any freedoms would encourage more people to ­embrace democratic ideas and values.

I dislike those governments which adopt authoritarian ­policies and so restrict the ­freedom of their citizens. These leaders are motivated by self-interest rather than the interests of citizens.

Phoebe Wong, Tseung Kwan O

Bad air will put off talented migrants

When it comes to attracting talented people to come and work here, Hong Kong faces increasingly stiff competition in the ­region.

If the city is to remain competitive the Hong Kong government has to come up with different policies to attract top professionals from the mainland and from overseas.

One issue that is becoming increasingly important, with raised levels of awareness, is the environment.

Singapore, for example, has much better air quality and overall a cleaner environment and this can be a factor when ­talented people from abroad are thinking of relocating to the ­region with their families.

Officials here need to recognise that improving air quality could be instrumental in attracting more top personnel.

And it is equally important to keep those people who are ­already here, but who may be headhunted by companies in other cities which have a better environment.

Companies also have an important role to play in retaining local professionals and they should not take them for granted.

They must offer them generous packages, or they will be tempted to leave for companies in other cities where they are promised more pay and other incentives, such as subsidised education and a comprehensive medical care. It is important to stay competitive.

Zoe Liu Sze-yui, Kwai Chung

Trump keeps whining about trade deficits

The United States is an impossible country.

Americans want to be able to buy things cheap. However, while they want the products to be inexpensive, they also want them to be of good quality. And when countries offer these cheap goods, the US governments complains about unfair practices and trade ­deficits.

President Donald Trump says these nations make a ­fortune and American workers suffer.

It seems the only solution for Trump would be for every commodity that Americans consume to be made in the US, then there would be no trade deficits.

Alex Ng, Sham Shui Po