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Hong Kong schools pushing Education Bureau goals on saving paper

PUBLISHED : Monday, 23 April, 2018, 3:56pm
UPDATED : Monday, 23 April, 2018, 10:46pm

I refer to the letter from Simon Wang (“Education Bureau can fortify green aims by working with schools on ways to save paper”, April 16). 

The Education Bureau has always attached great importance to environmental protection and green management in schools. We have reminded schools to formulate and put in place policies to promote green practices and environmental education, for which they may refer to the circular on “Environmental Policy and Energy Saving Measures in Schools”.

Besides, schools are requested to implement resource-saving measures. Reference materials for measures to save resources and reduce expenses are available on the “Effective Use of Resources in Schools” webpage, among which “Economy in Use of Paper/Envelope” is one of the topics encouraging reduced use of paper through recycling and effective use of electronic means of communication.

We notice that schools have implemented different effective measures in this regard. For example, with the one-off “Strengthening School Administration Management Grant” provided in 2016, some schools developed an electronic submission system for document transmission with external parties, and some procured a message management system to replace the issuing of notices to parents, which proved to be useful not only in enhancing the efficiency of school administration, but also in promoting paper-saving. We will continue to encourage schools to explore different practices to save paper in their daily operations.

As regards the proposed adoption of e-application for Primary One admission, it is worth noting that the whole admission process involves different stages and stakeholders, including schools and parents. Replacing the paper form submission with e-application for Primary One admission will affect more than 400 government and aided primary schools, and parents of over 50,000 applicant children each year. Additional workload will be incurred by schools, and the needs of parents with diverse backgrounds and abilities may not be well catered for. 

We will continue to keep a close watch on the implementation of the Primary One admission system and explore ways for further improvement where necessary.

Promoting environmental education is one of our priorities. We will continue to promote green practices for the sustainable development of our society.

Louise So, principal education officer (school administration), Education Bureau