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Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Kevin Yeung: teachers need not worry if they love the country

Kevin Yeung: teachers need not worry if they love the country

Teachers of the revamped liberal studies should not worry about violating the “red line” of the national security law if they are discussing mainland affairs in a “fair and unbiased” manner, education minister Kevin Yeung Yun-hung said.
The overhauled subject, now renamed “citizenship and social development”, will be rolled out in September at the earliest, but educators have raised concerns of breaching the national security law when talking about contentious issues in China.

Speaking on a radio program, Yeung said educators should not be concerned about contravening the law if they are “wholeheartedly” teaching students.

“The four acts under the national security law are all serious offences. I don’t think the general public should be worried [about breaking the law] as long as they love our country. The most important is [teachers] seek to deliver authentic and multi-dimensional information, as well as analysing them fairly and unbiasedly,” he said.

Earlier this week, the Curriculum Development Council overseeing the changes revealed that the subject will include new elements on national security, patriotism, national development and lawfulness.

The subject will also be trimmed from the existing six modules to three themes - Hong Kong, the nation, and the contemporary world.

On whether teachers should cover sensitive topics such as the June 4 incident, Yeung said professional teachers should be able to decide what to include during class discussions.

“It depends on whether [the discussion] aligns with the programme’s objectives and contents, instead of determining whether the event itself is good or not.”

He added such discussions should be balanced and based on facts, and that bureau will provide resources and training for teachers.
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