South China Morning Post editorial dated June 3, 2012
I THINK the education system in Hongkong has several shortcomings and I would like to see the Education Department doing something about them.
Students in Hongkong have too much homework and too many examinations.
Often they do not finish their homework until late at night.
If they have a test the next day, then they must prepare for it.
Sometimes they have to work so late into the night, that they get hardly any sleep.
They are often tired and this makes them less resistant to illness.
This problem of pressure is especially bad among fifth and seventh formers who have to sit for public examinations.
In their preparation for such exams, most candidates burn the midnight oil simply rote learning information without actually absorbing it.
Exams are seen as the key to success. If they do not do well, many will lose confidence in themselves and feel ashamed.
Some students, unable to get proper care and guidance, feel that they have no choice but to take their own lives.
However, this does not just happen among students sitting public exams. Other students, even primary school pupils, have committed suicide.
These tragedies arouse public attention. A lot of things are said by various people and yet nothing is done by the Government.
I think it is time that the Education Department did something to try and improve this tragic state of affairs.
I would like to know if department officials have thought about this matter and if they have decided what to do to help Hongkong’s students get over their present difficulties.
There is an urgent need to do something.
KONG OI-PING New Territories