The Policy of Direct Subsidy Scheme Schools in Hong Kong

Topics: High school, Secondary education, College Pages: 11 (3789 words) Published: May 4, 2013
Critically examine the pros and cons of the Direct Subsidy Scheme in primary and secondary education in Hong Kong. Take two well-known schools as case examples (one D.S.S. and the other non-D.S.S.) to illustrate your answer.

I. Introduction
II. Background
III. Direct Subsidy Scheme (DSS)
IV. Advantages of DSS
1. To schools
2. To society
3. To parents and students

V. Disadvantages of DSS
1. To schools
2. To society
3. To parents and students

VI. Case Study: D.S.S. – Diocesan Boys’ School
VII. Case Study: Non-D.S.S. – La Salle College
VIII. My Opinion
IX. Reference

I. Introduction
Since 1978, Hong Kong government has been providing free compulsory education to all children to the relevant group age. However, there is a growing trend for some parents and students not choosing free education but the one provided in Direct Subsidy Scheme (DSS) Schools or private schools. The aim of this paper attempts to evaluate DSS from different perspectives and thus by comparing a DSS school (Diocesan Boys’ School) with a non-DSS school (La Salle College), a more realistic view on this scheme could be reviewed. In addition my own opinion will be clearly expressed and elaborated.

II. Background
There are mainly four types of schools in Hong Kong, which are private schools, government schools, aided schools and DSS schools. Aided schools receive subsidy from government but are run by voluntary bodies, government operates government schools. They deliver a curriculum recommended by the Government and offer free primary and secondary education. Some of the private schools receive financial assistance from the Government. Private international schools provide an alternative to the mainstream education, in exchange for much higher tuition fees. Last but not least, DSS schools are run by various non-government organizations, they can charge school fee but are also subsidized by government. III. Direct Subsidy Scheme (DSS)

The Direct Subsidy Scheme (DSS) was introduced in Education Commission Report No.3 in September 1991 and it was launched in 1991 by the Hong Kong government. The implementation of DSS is in response to the intention to develop a strong private school sector by providing high quality schools other than government and aided schools. Allowing DSS schools the maximum freedom with regard to curricula, fees and entrance requirements, that is consistent with basic educational standards, a more diversified choice for parents and students is created. Any aided schools and private schools that attain sufficiently high educational standards and has it own building, should be eligible to apply to join the DSS. Eligible schools will receive a subsidy according to the number of students enrolled and fee level. Until September 2012, there are 73 DSS Schools. Places offered by those DSS schools now account around 8% of total school places in Hong Kong. It is appealing that there is a rising trend for the number of schools joining DSS.

IV. Advantages of DSS
The positive effects of DSS could be viewed from the following perspectives: 1. To schools
Higher autonomy in decision-making
DSS schools could enjoy high autonomy in decision-making; it allows a great flexibility to the school. Without the intervention of government, DSS Schools enjoy the freedom in school policies and direction, admission, teaching method and materials, curriculum, examination, school fees as well as the allocation of resources. Enjoying the freedom in students’ admission, school can set their own admission criteria to assess the applicants, such as more considerations in interviews and extra curricular activities other than the student’s academic results. As a result, students with similar qualities could be grouped and received education according to their ability. Therefore, teaching progress is more effective and education efficiency could be raised. In addition,...
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