Education Bureau

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Education Bureau
教育局
Regional Emblem of Hong Kong.svg
Emblem of the Hong Kong SAR
Agency overview
Formed1852
Jurisdiction Hong Kong
Headquarters11/F, East Wing, Central Government Offices, 2 Tim Mei Avenue, Tamar, Hong Kong
Employees5355
Minister responsible
Deputy Minister responsible
  • Christine Choi Yuk-lin, Under Secretary for Education
Agency executive
  • Ingrid Yeung, Permanent Secretary for Education
Child agencies
  • University Grants Committee Secretariat
  • Working Family and Student Financial Assistance Agency
Websitewww.edb.gov.hk/
Education Bureau
Traditional Chinese教育局

The Education Bureau (EDB) is responsible for implementing education policies in Hong Kong.

The bureau is headed by the Secretary for Education and oversees agencies including University Grants Committee and Student Finance Office.

History[edit]

Logo of Education Department

The Education Department (教育署 and 教育司署 before 1983) was responsible for education matters in the territory, with the exception of post-secondary and tertiary education. In 2003, the department was abolished and a new bureau, the Education and Manpower Bureau (教育統籌局 abbreviated EMB) was formed. In July 2007, the manpower portfolio was transferred to the new Labour and Welfare Bureau by newly re-elected Chief Executive Donald Tsang.

The bureau was formerly housed at the Former French Mission Building.

Structure[edit]

The bureau mainly consists of six branches, which are responsible for different policies.

  • Further & Higher Education Branch
  • Planning, Infrastructure and School Places Allocation Branch
  • Professional Development & Special Education Branch
  • School Development & Administration Branch
  • Curriculum and Quality Assurance Branch
  • Corporate Services Branch

The bureau also oversees two child agencies: the University Grants Committee Secretariat and the Working Family and Student Financial Assistance Agency.

Education System[edit]

The Education System includes: Kindergarten Education, Primary and Secondary School Education, Special Education, Post-secondary Education, and other Education and Training.[1]

Controversies[edit]

Censorship of textbooks[edit]

In August 2020, the Education Bureau, with the aim to 'help student develop positive values', made changes to the Liberal Studies textbooks of the six main publishers, who were invited to join the voluntary consultancy service introduced by the bureau in the previous year. The pro-democracy Professional Teachers' Union (PTU) said some teachers received messages from the publishers that the amendments relating to criticizing the mainland Chinese government and some political cartoons were replaced with emphasizing the possible criminal consequences for participants. The union accused that it is practising 'political censorship and 'had severely damaged the goals' of setting up the project.[2]

On 5 October, 2020, the Education Bureau deregistered a primary school teacher, the teacher was accused of using pro-independence materials, which the Bureau claims is an act of “spreading Hong Kong Independence message”. The Professional Teachers Union strongly condemned the teacher’s disqualification. In a statement, the Hong Kong Professional Teachers’ Union accused the education bureau of failing to conduct a fair investigation. It said the unilateral disqualification and issuing of warning letters to the school were “despicable acts of intimidation of the school management” and were unacceptable.[3]

National Security Education[edit]

In February 2021, the Education Bureau, under Kevin Yeung, announced changes to the education system to incorporate the National Security Law.[4] Notices to teachers explained that teachers should educate students as young as 6 years old about the national security law.[4] In response, Ip Kin-yuen, the vice-president of the Professional Teachers' Union, said that he was astounded to see the "vast scope" of the new rules as well as the lack of consultation with teachers before the rules were published.[5]

Later in February 2021, the Education Bureau released a 1200-word guideline for implementation of the changes, claiming it was "obliged to clarify" so-called misunderstandings by the media when it had announced changes earlier in the month.[6] Ip Kin-yuen responded and said that the guidelines would do little, and that the Education Bureau "should also hold proper consultation sessions among educators and members of the public to explain about the guidelines in detail, listen to their thoughts and opinions, as well as respond to questions and even defend it for themselves if they want."[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "EDB - Home". www.edb.gov.hk. Retrieved 26 January 2017.
  2. ^ Chan, Ho-him (20 August 2020). "Hong Kong education chiefs hit back at teachers' union over criticism liberal studies textbook changes amount to political censorship". South China Morning Post. Retrieved 22 August 2020.
  3. ^ "Hong Kong primary teacher deregistered 'for talking about independence'". The Guardian. 6 October 2020. Retrieved 6 October 2020.
  4. ^ a b "'Schools to be responsible for ignoring NSL breach' - RTHK". news.rthk.hk. Retrieved 6 February 2021.
  5. ^ "'Consult public on national security education now' - RTHK". news.rthk.hk. Retrieved 6 February 2021.
  6. ^ a b "Calling security education 'brainwashing' a 'malicious' accusation, say officials". South China Morning Post. 22 February 2021. Retrieved 24 February 2021.

External links[edit]