Hong Kong schools

Preschool interviews that test for language skills expect children to do all the heavy lifting

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 24 June, 2018, 6:02pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 24 June, 2018, 6:02pm

During the mid-1970s, when I was born, it was pretty easy to get into preschool. Almost every child got admitted. However, today it is totally different.

Due to the limited student spaces and fierce competition, almost every preschool applicant is assessed in some way, be it for language or other skills (“What do Hong Kong’s preschool kids know about interviews”, June 8).

I am afraid that, soon, our children will be afraid to go to school, even before they start kindergarten.

Not many families speak English to their kids before their formal education begins, and so assessing their English language skills would put them at a disadvantage. Next, I am afraid kids will be assessed on their maths skills.

From kindergarten age, Hong Kong’s children are tutored to be winners

Usually, the preschools that interview children have expensive tuition fees. Parents send their children to these schools for them to learn, and it is the teacher’s job to impart language skills, instead of children being expected to speak or write well even before they attend school.

Thus, I agree with letter writer Mark Tse that children could be assessed on their communication and social skills, rather than English proficiency.

Eunice Li Dan-yue, Shanghai