It was a normal day at school. As always my morning was hectic and I…
Ideal financial situation or cleaving outstanding results In certain aspects. They provide better education compared to public schools. (No. Para. 10) In his respect, Hong Kong is also in need with a “Prominent and independent private schooling system”. (No. 4 Para 17) under this circumstance, the committee suggested the DOS for Implementation. It was not until 2002 the DOS became popular among HACK education system as three well-known secondary schools (SST. Pall’s College, SST. Pall’s Co-Educational College and Good Hope School) Joined this scheme. The rationale behind is that the government has modified the subsidizing mechanism which help skyrocket schools’ balance for those which Join the scheme.
Another reason Is that the official recruitment system was moderated; from formerly 5 bands f students to 3 bands thus students’ ability became more “average” and cannot be also acts as a motivation for them to Join INS. 3. Positive effects of INS 3. 1 Schools enjoy high autonomy Under DOS, schools are free to decide its own missions and visions by guiding its own way of operation. Such high degree of autonomy is realized in the following aspects: 3. 1. 1 Curriculum Students are not made mandatory to study the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HEDGES). They have the freedom to choose other diploma programs.
For instance, DB’S offer students International Baccalaureate, a worldwide accepted agree. Students are nurtured in a more diverse way to suit in this ever-changing world. 3. 1. 2 Students admission Schools are not required to Join the Secondary School Places Allocation (SPA) for students’ enrollment. They can recruit students in accordance with the school’s objectives and preferences. For instance, DB’S has its own criteria for 67 (F. L) students: 50% for academic results, 25% for extra-curricular activities, 20% for performance in interviews and others for 5%.
Therefore, DOS schools can enroll students whenever they think appropriate. 3. 1. 3 Financial resources For aided schools, they need to precede complicated procedures through the Education and Manpower Bureau before the approval of funding. For DOS schools, they are exempt from those processes. They have full control on how the funding is utilized. Although tuition fee is relatively high in DOS schools, students are enjoying facilities which values are far greater than what they pay. 3. 1. 4 School policies DOS schools can formulate tailor-made policies.
For example, they can decide to have small-scale class of 25 students instead of 40 pupils in a class. According to Mrs. Fanny Law, class size cannot be greater than 25 students in order to achieve the greatest effectiveness of teaching. Another example can be illustrated from DB’S. In 2009, when the school is commencing to open B courses next year, the school committee considered to enroll female students. Such a breakthrough does not come to green light finally, but it can reveal that the school committee even has power to implement such a critical policy that may even break school’s decades of tradition. 3. Alternative choices for students and parents Formerly, there are 3 types of schools: government schools, aided schools and private schools. With the introduction of DOS schools, more options are available for parents and students to opt for. Parents can choose the most suitable schools for their kids, not only based on the nature of it, but also the above-mentioned uniqueness such as the curriculum and language conducted in class. Under the current school place allocation system, around 10% students are failed to match with corresponding schools with regards to their ability in terms of academic performance and extra- curricular activities.
INS schools can offer “knock-door” places for students who are not able to enter their targeted schools. This can mitigate the problem of mismatch thus smoothen the allocation process. 3. 3 Greater variety of facilities can be provided In addition to have a higher autonomy on what facilities to be built at their own expense, a greater variety of facilities be offered as well. As DOS schools source of funding are not limited to school’s fee (which are usually high), but also grants from at around 35 thousand dollars.
While for B courses, the fee is even 62 thousand dollars per year. With also the assistance from government, the most prevailing and sophisticated facilities can then be constructed. Facilities that are built in the campus of DB’S include a 3-storey car park complex, an 800-seats concert hall, dormitory with magnificent views and etc. Without certain financial budget, such facilities are impossible to be built. 3. 4 Stimulates competitions among schools Flexible school policies allow DOS schools to increase their competitiveness through innovative measures.
Students who are eligible are willing to enter DOS schools no matter how far they live in as DOS schools seem to be stigmatize as “superior schools. ” In this way, non-DOS schools are also affected. As part of the elite students eave already entered DOS schools, they need to figure out bailout plans to attract students. As non-DOS schools are bounded to limitations set by government, they compete in “traditional” ways. One typical method is to boost the quality of teaching by training or recruiting better teachers.
This turns out to create positive competition and advance the whole education systems. 3. 5 Cultivate students with non-unified abilities According to former chief executive Mr.. Tuna, he advocated new elitism to replace egalitarianism. He emphasized that the new elitism should not be based on family grounds or hierarchies but elites can come from everywhere. The critical condition is that these elites should help others take a leap forward after being self- advanced. He believed that new elitism would be welcome by the general public because it is basically one of the core values of Hong Kong.
DOS schools are able to nurture elites who specialize in different areas by providing diversified education systems. Such concept of elitism is associated with specialization that everyone has their unique competitive edge to suit with different Jobs. 4. Rebuttals?Advantages are not Just borne to DOS schools DOS schools sound to have a lot of benefits compared to non-DOS schools. Nevertheless, those are not privileges solely serve for DOS schools. Indeed, non-DOS schools are not isolated from those advantages mentioned.
In the following, I will address how non-DOS schools can also be better off by illustrating with La Sale College (LLC), a traditional prominent non-DOS school. 4. 1 Campus’s facilities are comparable to DOS schools The nature of the schooling system may not be the major factor to affect the facilities in the campus. Non-DOS schools can also build up comprehensive amenities for their allow students. For instance, La Sale College own a real-size soccer field, Olympic standardized swimming pool and a multi-functioned gymnasium. Particularly for the soccer field, it was newly built in 2010 which cost 8 million HIKE.
Notwithstanding this rarely seen case in other non-DOS schools, it proves that the Direct Subsidies Scheme may not be the only pathway to accumulate financial resources. 4. 2 “Door-knocking” places are not constrained to DOS schools Other than DOS schools, private schools or even aided schools can provide “door-knocking” places for students. Such flexibility in admission is not Just bounded to DOS schools. Every year, there are students who cannot be enrolled into targeted schools go for “knock-door” with their parents and those schools including traditional famous schools such as La Sale College.
On the competitions for a seat in schools. A lot of DOS schools have already declared that they will not offer “door-knocking” places. Even if there are exceptions, they appear to be very rare cases. Whether or not the school undergoes DOS, the availability of flexible admission seems to decline drastically these few years. 4. Conclusion on advantages of DOS schools Undoubtedly, several advantages such as the high autonomy on school policies are the competitive edges of DOS schools. Nonetheless, some of the benefits are also found in some non-DOS schools.
This indicates that there must be other criteria for schools to enjoy such benefits. It may be the reputation of schools, the number of post graduates or the assistance from different channels. The system?DOS, is not the only controlling factor. 5. Negative effects of DOS Drawbacks of DOS will be addressed. Some parties, especially those from DOS schools pep dismissing these criticisms as invalid but are their Justifications reasonable? Again, I will cite La Sale College and Diocesan Boys’ School as examples to exemplify my point of views. 5. 1. DOS schools become market-oriented Education should not be quantified and should not be treated as an economic good. Orientation seems to be adversely adjusted under DOS?from education to profit- maximizing. Subsidies provided from government to DOS schools are assessed through the number of students. In order to lift up the financial assistance, DOS schools attempt to attract students through inappropriate means such as building ewe facilities. On the other way round, some DOS schools even enroll students whose parents donate a large sum of money to the school regardless of the ability of students. . 1. 2 Refutations for becoming market-oriented According to Mr.. Change, former DB’S principal, as long as they can maintain their tradition of “eminence” and as long as teachers, students and their parent are proud of the school, they will not deteriorate into a “market-oriented” school under any system. 5. 1. 3 Claims did not align with DOS schools’ actions In 2010, several DOS schools including DB’S embroiled into a scandal. After assessing he financial reports, it was found out that DB’S owned nearly 10 million reserves but reduce scholarships to eligible students.
It was also unveiled that DB’S “underestimated” 90% of their profits; successfully apply for an increment of tuition fee of maximum 40%. 5. 2. 1 Systematizing effect on students With better facilities and the public impression “students in DOS schools are always better”, students may develop a sense of superiority that they turn out to become arrogant and overconfident. While students studying in non-DOS schools may be looked down and pose harm to their self-esteem, students are then polarize into wow different groups. Indeed, ability of students should not be Judged by the type of school that they are admitted. . 2. 2 Refutation for systematizing effects In light of the consultation paper on DB’S Joining the DOS, as long as poor students fulfill the criteria, they will not be solely denied by DB’S on economic grounds. Indeed, according to Mr.. Change, DB’S will establish an effective mechanism to assist them. 5. 2. 3 “Effective mechanism” deteriorates the future of students In the academic year of 2011-2012, Db’s scholarship reached a total of 3. 3 million dollars. The students ho are eligible in obtaining scholarship usually have outstanding performances in from other schools that do well in sports.
Poaching is a controversial issue and personally I do not think it is appropriate to do so. Poached students will be specialized in sports training after they are enrolled and their academic performance may exacerbate. Although DB’S claim they will also put focus on sports students’ academic results, such claim is not convincing. In DB’S, the required score of HECKLE for sports students is 10, which differs from normal students. If they do really care bout students’ academic results, they should not differentiate the score for admittance.
The mechanism of setting sponsorships can definitely preserve elite students to fight for the glory for DOS schools but is it really the best plan for those students? Are the scholarships going to last forever even when they graduate? Such act may probably deteriorate the future of students. 5. 3. 1 Spirit of egalitarianism and meritocracy diminishes Two main ideas have been highlighted as the core values of education in the past? egalitarianism and meritocracy. Meritocracy emphasizes an elite-oriented society. Students are admitted to different schools with regards to their abilities.
In the last decade, this idea seems to shift to egalitarianism since the introduction of Secondary School Place Allocation (SPA). Luck as well as geographical location is also considered as criteria to enter a school. Egalitarianism emphasizes equal opportunities that every student enjoys the rights to enter every school regardless to their ability. DOS schools violate these two ideas which promote the importance of equality. From what Mr.. Tuna addressed in 2001, DOS is a kind of new-elitism. It is somehow similar to meritocracy. However, practically, it may not become as what Mr..
Tuna mentioned, provide specialists in different areas. As the admission system of DOS schools becomes flexible, ability or luck are not the only factors. Large sum of tuition fee also stands as a hindrance for students to bear. 5. 3. 2 Refutation for violation of equal educational opportunities According to Mr.. Change, former DB’S principal, DB’S enjoyed outstanding success in academic studies, music and sport as a result of teaching students according to their abilities. He regarded DB’S as an outstanding school with long traditions and they are then able to admit relatively reliant students.
Change also depicted egalitarianism as a trap that may lead to mediocrity. 5. 3. 3 True elite schools?Bring mediocrity to extraordinary In my point of view, schools with great renown should not fear the admission of mediocre students. BRB. Steve Hogan, principal of La Sale College, refused to turn LLC in a DOS school on the grounds that it would bar students from low-income families from entry. This does not mean LLC will fall into mediocrity and indeed, BRB. Steve has great vision and confidence to turn La Sale boys into leaders of Hong Kong by the year of 2020.
On he downside, are DOS schools really able to enjoy reputation from admitting elite students or lead to shady or even illegal business? In 2007, 4 parents were suspected to bribe a teacher in Diocesan Preparatory School (DIPS) of a total of at least 70 thousand dollars in order to “reserve” places for their kids. The teacher was then arrested by IAC and the conspiracies of the 4 parents went in vain finally. 5. 4. 1 Threaten teachers’ welfare In the formerly established education system, teachers serve as civil servants to nurture the next generations. In DOS schools, teachers are no more protected by
Great concerns breed among teachers and staffs once schools are decided to Join DOS thus decreasing the incentive to work. 5. 4. 2. Refutation on threatening teachers’ welfare Mr.. Change, former principal of DB’S, emphasized that teachers were their precious assets and their consultation paper states clearly that all existing terms and conditions in the employment contract will not be affected. He instilled confidence to teachers by saying no revisions will be made upon the contacts. 5. 4. 3 Gentrification of DOS schools Teachers are not solely concerned about their salaries and remuneration.
When DB’S as considering adopting DOS, 95% teachers opposed this act. While this may threaten their ‘iron bowls’ in the original education system, there are other rationales as well. From the consultation paper of DB’S, it helps reduce concerns about salary reduction or being laid-off but it cannot relieve the worries about changing of school’s tradition. They afraid this will turn DB’S into a “noble school”, violating the ideology and principles of teaching. 6. Conclusion Poverty leads to poverty. It is a vicious cycle for the underprivileged one to have poor offspring and this will continue on and on.