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National education on agenda in Hong Kong
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Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-shing said the SAR government would continue to promote national education in Hong Kong on two fronts.

On one hand, the SAR's education authority has for long framed guidelines on classifying national education as the curriculum of primary education, which includes classroom teaching, cross-subject learning, flag-raising ceremony, as well as visits to and exchanges with mainland.

On the other hand, China's blistering development in every sphere has formed a strong force that raises the emotions and pride of Hong Kong people and students as part of the Chinese people, while the mainland's 2awesome progress has also greatly improved the Hong Kong people's perception of the country.

In an article to the local print media, Tsang said since becoming home affairs minister, he made special efforts in contacting people from all quarters of the society and listening to their views on promotion of national education in Hong Kong.

Surprisingly, many people, including district councilors, put forth strong opinions and suggestions on the enhancement of national education. He wrote: "This touches me and makes me realize that national education is a spontaneous call that nobody can be forced to accept."

What is clear is that the destinies of Hong Kong and the country are closely linked to each other, he added. Following Hong Kong's reunification with the motherland, the implementation of national education cannot but fit in needs of historic changes in search of identity and recognition. More and more people have come to know that enhancement of notions about the nation will definitely benefit the future development of Hong Kong.

He was happy to observe that 10 years after the reunification, the Hong Kong people, especially the young ones, have made significant strides in their understanding of the nation. From now on, the government would teach the people to let them know about and love their country to make them feel proud of being Chinese. The government will also urge them to have the visions and ambitions of 'world citizens' in tandem with the unique character of the city of Hong Kong.

"As home affairs minister, I will continue to promote national education in this path. Given next year is the year of the Beijing Olympics, I hope this will be a year all the Chinese people are proud of, as well as our fruitful year of national education," he said.

(China Daily, December 4, 2007)

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