Pupil suspended by school for displaying ‘free Hong Kong’ slogan during online classes, as officials warn actions could violate national security law
- Profile picture of Form Four student at Heung To Middle School in Kowloon Tong showed flag displaying political slogan
- Education Bureau says it has already contacted school over message, which it says implies independence, secession and subversion
A pupil who displayed a photo with the political slogan “Free Hong Kong, Revolution Now” during online classes has been suspended for a week by his secondary school, according to its student concern group.
The teenager, a Form Four pupil at Heung To Middle School in Kowloon Tong, reportedly had an image of a flag bearing the slogan as his profile picture for online lessons.
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“We understand that the school has been dealing with the incident seriously,” a bureau spokeswoman said. “We will keep in contact with the school and continue to provide them with suitable professional advice.”
No one should attempt to challenge the national security legislation, she said, while adding the bureau also believed schools would give pupils the chance to correct any wrongdoing.
Neither Heung To Middle School, which describes itself as a “traditional patriotic school”, or its principal, Wong Chung-leung, responded to multiple enquiries from the Post.
On Monday, the school’s student concern group revealed a student had been asked to return to campus to meet with school management, where he was told he would be suspended from classes for a week because of showing “politically charged wordings” in his profile picture during online lessons.
The Heung To Middle School Hong Kong Indigenous Concern Group, which called the move “political censorship”, said it thought the punishment “was too harsh”.
“He is just a normal and ordinary student, and he had to get penalised,” a group member said.
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The group also said school management had warned the pupil he could be given demerits, while also suggesting he consider transferring to another school.
More than 100 pupils from Heung To and several other schools protested against the handling of the incident, while the school only said it considered whether a teacher could “meet the school’s philosophy and visions” when deciding whether to renew their contract.