Letters to the Editor, October 9, 2017
Positive sides to education system in city
A recent survey claimed that Hong Kong students are not prepared for the future.
I will graduate from secondary school and do not think I am unprepared for the future. Many in society see only what they perceive as the disadvantages of our local school system. While it has not done enough to stimulate innovation and creativity, it has trained many young people to be fiercely competitive.
Many have suggested that the education system is a complete failure, with young people possessing no flexibility or problem-solving skills.
However, think about the youngsters who used their initiative and abilities to succeed. Think about young people such as Steven Lam Hoi-yuen (co-founder of GoGoVan) and Ng On-yee (winner of the ladies’ world snooker championship).
I think Hong Kong students are much more proficient than foreign students. Many studies have shown, in spite of their low interest and confidence in mathematics and science, Hong Kong students are actually quite talented in these areas and many are highly motivated.
I believe the local school system has helped me to become more mature and made me determined to persevere. And I know of many local students who have the same attitude, and who are determined to do well in life.
I accept that the curriculum is demanding for students. We are required to master six to seven subjects. And on top of that we have to take part in extracurricular activities. Some cannot cope with the pressure and may become depressed, even taking their own lives, in some extreme cases.
I can therefore see a case for introducing reforms to the education system.
This matter should be looked at in detail by the relevant experts, including teachers and officials in the Education Bureau.
They need to have brainstorming sessions and discuss what improvements can be made. I do not think it is enough to increase the number of university places and raise subsidies for undergraduates.
Essentially, what needs to improve is what I would call the software of education. This can help students to enjoy their studies. You will learn more if you are enjoying the process.
I don’t think it helps to be constantly bashing society.
Bianca Cheng, Sha Tin
Pupils often under a lot of pressure
Some critics claim that the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE) exam puts some youngsters under too much pressure.
I am a Form Six student and in the course of three weeks last month I had 17 quizzes and school-based assessments.
I also attend tutorial classes and some nights get only five or six hours of sleep. This makes me feel very sleepy during the school day.
When I read blogs on social networking sites, it is clear that many Form Six pupils have the same problems.
How you do in the HKDSE will determine whether you get a place at a university, locally or abroad.
So it puts young people under huge pressure. Doing things they enjoy in their spare time can be rare, as they often have very little spare time.
They are also under pressure from parents who want them to do well in the HKDSE exam, get a coveted place at a university and pursue successful careers.
Some of these mothers and fathers are known as tiger parents. They should be supportive and not put their children under too much pressure.
Cheung Cheuk-hei, Yau Yat Chuen
Lifestyle much more relaxed in Taiwan
I refer to the article by Nick Westra (“Why are so many Hongkongers moving to Taiwan?” October 1). I believe that as more Hongkongers encounter problems here, some of them decide they will be happier working and living in Taiwan.
One important factor is the cost of living, which is much lower in Taiwan.
Living costs are a huge burden for Hong Kong citizens and many cannot afford to own a flat. In Taiwan, homes are cheaper and so people feel they can enjoy a better quality of life.
Also, the pace of life on the island is much slower than it is here. Quality of life is important to many people, as the pace here can be quite frenzied.
Although Hong Kong is a developed and international city, it is very fast and some citizens want to slow down.
The Hong Kong government has to recognise that there is an exodus, and not just to Taiwan. It should implement changes that persuade professionals to stay here.
Christine Fung Ka-wing, Tsing Yi
People must guard privacy with e-wallet
Some people will welcome the introduction of a leading electronic wallet system linking Hong Kong banks when it is launched next year.
An e-wallet system can certainly be more convenient for people, but it does have some disadvantages.
You have to provide a lot of personal information, and that information could be stored in your phone.
If you lose your phone, or it is stolen, thieves could have access to your information.
Criminals could use the data to purchase goods.
If people do want to use e-wallets, they must make sure they are more vigilant and careful with cybersecurity.
Users should come up a password that would be difficult for the criminals to guess.
People have to be careful when using the system and be aware of the risks involved.
I believe they would be OK if they are careful.
Yuki Pang, Po Lam