Nearly 90 per cent of Hong Kong teachers said a new competence assessment carried out last school year had pressured them to drill pupils despite it being a simpler version, the city’s largest organisation for the profession found.
The poll released on Sunday by the Professional Teachers’ Union showed close to 80 per cent of surveyed teachers opposed carrying out the Basic Competency Assessment (BCA) or Territory-wide System Assessment (TSA) next year, while 40 per cent of schools said they continued to drill students and arrange additional classes to prepare them for the BCA.
The Education Bureau told Young Post it will wait until the Coordinating Committee on Basic Competency Assessment and Assessment Literacy completes its findings and issues the recommendation before deciding whether to re-implement the test next year.
Administered across the city, the TSA was designed to enhance learning and teaching by providing the government with data to review policies.
But in recent years, the assessment, particularly the version for Primary Three, has become associated with teachers drilling pupils amid a widespread belief that the bureau uses data to rank schools. The bureau has repeatedly denied such claims. The bureau earlier this year launched the BCA, seen by many as a mere repackaging and simpler version of the TSA.
Union vice-president and education sector lawmaker Ip Kin-yuen expressed doubt over the panel’s credibility, as it consists mainly of people from the government and principals, but few teachers.
“The committee lacks representation and did not do a comprehensive study on teachers’ opinions,” he said.
Edited by Nicole Moraleda