22 teachers get letters over protests

Local | Sophie Hui 23 Jan 2020

The education bureau has take action on teachers who have been the targets of complaints.

Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung Yun-hung said yesterday that 10 reprimand, three warning and nine advisory letters have been sent to 22 teachers while 10 were given verbal "advice."

That was after his bureau handled 107 complaints against teachers last year, though more than 30 cases had still to be settled.

And recurrences of misconduct, Yeung warned, could lead to teacher registrations being canceled.

He said the complaints involved teachers who adopted anti-government or pro-government stances.

Many of the complaints were related to cursing or hate messages and using "inappropriate teaching materials," while some teachers had been arrested.

"It is fine to express an opinion," Yeung said, "but some forms of expression are not okay."

But he still believes in most teachers, Yeung added.

"It takes times to build mutual trust," he said, and "I believe in them on the whole. But we have to handle complaints fairly."

Yeung also said people should understand that his bureau always puts the interest of students first.

He sent a letter to all school principals and teachers yesterday to say he hoped they would understand the bureau has a responsibility to handle and correct some issues that affect the professionalism of teachers.

That, in turn, protected the interests of teachers and students and enhanced people's confidence in teachers, he said.

Yeung also said he appreciated teachers' efforts in keeping schools running smoothly amid the social unrest.

He noted too that students now receive information not only from books and teachers but also from society at large and via the internet. But it could be difficult for students to be able to always distinguish the truth, and they could follow the herd.

sophie.hui@singtaonewscorp.com

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