Heat on kids in summer overload

Local | Lauren Lau 15 Aug 2019

Children should be allowed to choose extracurricular activities instead of being enrolled in too many courses, a pro-Beijing party has advocated after finding 10 percent of parents signed their children up for six or more summer courses.

The Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong interviewed 316 parents of primary school students from June 19 to July 10.

It found that 40 percent of the parents registered their children for courses during summer breaks, including the 10 percent who put their kids in six or more courses.

"It is quite overwhelming for the children to have so many courses to attend during their summer holiday," said DAB district councilor Jacqueline Chung Ka-man. "I've heard of cases where a child didn't even have time for lunch, only having 30 minutes between classes for commuting, in order to rush to the next class."

About half of the parents considered the courses a way to prepare their kids for the coming school year, while a quarter thought if their kids don't attend classes, they would be wasting their summer, Chung said.

The survey also found nearly 38 percent of parents spent more than a third of their income on the courses - an increase of 10 percent over last year.

But 30 percent of parents said due to financial constraints, they did not arrange any summer courses for their kids.


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