Adoria Yeung, 15, SKH Lam Kau Mow Secondary School
Yes, because education is very important to children. They gain a lot of knowledge by studying subjects such as history, maths, science, and geography. They also learn how to socialise and communicate with others, and sharpen their problem-solving skills. All these things will help them to become responsible adults and have successful careers.
Dragon Lo Koon-kit, 17, PLK Wu Chung College
Of course, YES. Education is crucial in this highly competitive society, and studying at university can be very expensive.
Although studying is not everyone’s cup of tea, education can sharpen a student’s competitive edge and help them get good jobs. Also, students who are outstanding athletes or musicians can pursue a career in those fields. Using the money set aside by parents, these talented children can improve their skills and be well prepared to face future challenges.
Haleema Bibi Hussain, 15, Madam Lau Kam Lung Secondary School of Miu Fat Buddhist Monastery
Yes, I agree. University fees have gone up during the past few years. The earlier parents start saving, the better. If they don’t, they may panic and only be able to pay the fees by taking a loan at the last minute.
Additionally, if parents start saving earlier, children have the opportunity to get into higher-quality schools which are usually more expensive. Tertiary education is very costly, and having more options because parents have more savings means there’s one less thing to worry about.
Anson Liu Hong-yau, 16, Wa Ying College
No, I don’t think so. Some families lead a hand-to-mouth existence. If we force them to save money for their children’s education, we will be imposing a huge financial burden on them. In fact, tertiary education in Hong Kong is heavily subsidised. Students with financial needs can apply for a grant or loan from the government.
Universities also offer numerous scholarships, while Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor recently announced an annual subsidy of HK$30,000 for students in Hong Kong pursuing full-time, locally accredited self-financed undergraduate degrees. If students can manage their time well, they can also take up part-time jobs to help ease their parents’ financial situation.
Instead of setting aside money for their children’s education, I think parents should save for their own retirement. They will need the money for medical and other expenses.
Nicole Shing Hiu-ching, 15, Ma On Shan Tsung Tsin Secondary School
I don’t think so. Not all parents can set aside money for their children’s education. Least of all disadvantaged families, who find it hard to even make a living.
Some people think the extra money will provide more opportunities for their children and help them get a good job in the future. However, their children will feel stressed about their parents’ high expectations, and as a result, put too much pressure on themselves. This is not good.
I agree that children’s education is of utmost important. But parents should not be forced to set aside money for their children’s education.
In our next Talking Points, we'll discuss:
Should you have to pay a fine for delaying a flight due to non-health-related reasons?
We are now accepting your answers for this topic. To take part, email your answer with your name, age, and school, along with a nice, clear selfie (make sure it’s not blurry), to email@example.com by lunchtime on Monday. Don’t forget to include “Talking Points” in the subject line.