Don't scrap Chinese history, give it a chance

Don't scrap Chinese history, give it a chance

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Empress Dowager Cixi was one of the only two women who ever assumed leadership of the country throughout China's long, male-dominated history.
Empress Dowager Cixi was one of the only two women who ever assumed leadership of the country throughout China's long, male-dominated history.
Illustration: Pearl Law

I am writing about the decision made by an elite girls' school. It recently decided to scrap Chinese history after fewer than 10 of 140 Form Three students picked it as one of their top choices.

This news should alarm everyone as it reveals the subject's lack of popularity among Hong Kong students nowadays. As a student, it is frustrating to see such a lack of interest. I feel we should be grateful that we have a choice whether or not to study history. I believe learning the subject is essential as it does not only tell us stories, but teaches us the values of our nation.

Before another school stops teaching the topic, the Education Bureau (EDB) and the Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority must work together to figure out what is wrong. Time is running out.

Kiki Lo Yee-ki, Leung Shek Chee College


From the Editor

Thank you for your letter, Kiki. This is a hot topic at the moment as people tend to link all sorts of political motives to the lack of interest in history. Really, though, history is one of those subjects that does not seem essential to a good, moneymaking career - and that is what Hong Kong is all about. While it is fascinating, Chinese history is long and convoluted, and feels more like an indulgence than a wise subject choice.

Given that things are so stressed in the current Hong Kong education system, it is no surprise that students opt to focus on the essentials. I don't see how the EDB can possibly change this as far as history is concerned. It would be wonderful if they could change it as far as the general syllabus is concerned. But it's not just those two bodies; many parents, too, have the "results are everything" mindset, and they need to change their ways.

Susan, Editor

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
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