Four government departments, including the Education Bureau and Narcotics Division, have agreed in principle to move a cash- strapped drug rehabilitation school from Chi Ma Wan to a disused one in Mui Wo on Lantau.
But government officials will have a hard time convincing Mui Wo residents to agree to the move. Ninety percent of 800 locals surveyed were against the plan, fearing a negative influence on their children and on tourism. The Home Affairs Bureau is to lead a meeting with residents to ease their doubts.
Christian Zheng Sheng College principal Chan Siu-cheuk welcomed the decision to move his school, saying he had been fighting for three years to find a new place. "The students are not prisoners. They need a chance to study and integrate with the community. Mui Wo is a perfect location."
The proposal will be discussed at the Island District Council next Monday.
Chan is also hoping for a government subsidy, and said donations were the main source of meeting school expenses.
The present school can hold only 30 students but is forced to accommodate 120.