There is a worrying lack of certain historical events in the proposed Chinese history curriculum that teachers will have to make up for, says legislator Ip Kin-yuen.
Ip, who represents the education functional constituency which includes all teachers in Hong Kong, added that while teachers have been given freedom in how to teach the subject, important events like the 1967 Leftist riots or the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown should be in the syllabus.
“To a certain extent, textbook authors and teachers will follow the syllabus, so while they can teach things outside the curriculum, it is better if the events are put in the syllabus itself,” the legislator told Young Post yesterday.
Students have mixed feelings about a compulsory Chinese history course
Meanwhile, Hong Kong’s education minister, Kevin Yeung Yun-hung, has urged against dwelling on “one or two events” in a meeting with lawmakers.
The meeting was held a day after the government launched a second public conference on the compulsory Chinese history subject for junior secondary students, to be implemented in 2020.
“We understand different events have different meanings to different people, but when we look at China’s 5,000 years of history, sometimes some events may be relatively less important from a historical and educational point of view,” Yeung said.
Ip disagrees, saying that history must be learned in full. Nevertheless, he believes that Hong Kong’s teachers will provide all the necessary information.
“I am confident that Hong Kong’s teachers will teach outside the syllabus to compensate for the slack.”