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    » 09/26/2011, 00.00

    HONG KONG - CHINA

    Cardinal Zen: Beijing National Education a form of "brainwashing"



    The retired bishop of Hong Kong, attacks the Chinese government proposal that imposes separate classes for "national education". According to the prelate, "they want to foment nationalism, the Church does not accept this situation." Hong Kong deputies also express doubts.
    Hong Kong (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The reform of school management in Hong Kong will see a range of subjects that are a means to "brainwash" students. According to the bishop emeritus of the Territory, Cardinal Joseph Zen Ze-kiun, "Teachers and students must oppose this plan, which is too vague and tends to encourage an extreme nationalism."

    According to the government proposal made, all schools in Hong Kong - from primary school onwards – will have to include non-defined "national education classes" as a separate subject in the syllabus. Speaking at a forum organized by the Office for Catholic Education, the prelate posed the question, "What exactly does the subject want to teach? Does national education mean unconditional support for the Communist Party?".

    Card. Zen said the church's autonomy in school management provided "checks and balances" against inappropriate national education imposed by the government. "The Catholic Church is obliged to offer this system against the government and to uphold people's power, and we have never abused this power," he said. "Without this [autonomy], the government can do whatever it wants, including brainwashing youths with wrong and extreme nationalism. "

    The local government supports this criticism. According to education sector lawmaker Cheung Man-kwong, "the government should not force national education on all primary and secondary schools and that schools' autonomy should be defended. If teachers wish, they must be able to object and decide what to teach in freedom. "
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    See also

    25/10/2011 HONG KONG
    Card. Zen: My struggle and that of Hong Kong for Catholic schools
    Since Hong Kong’s return to China, the government has planned control over local schools. The new management committees undermine freedom of education and are likely to twist the Christian and Catholic proposal. The reasons for the hunger strike launched by the bishop emeritus of Hong Kong.

    14/10/2011 HONG KONG
    Appeals Court decides less freedom for Hong Kong schools
    Despite a long and hard battle, led by Cardinal Zen, the Territory judges reject an appeal against order requiring private and religious schools to set up monitoring bodies to have the state funds. Bishop Tong: "We have a commitment, we will respect it."

    08/09/2012 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Card. Zen and Jimmy Lai at demonstration against Beijing’s "patriotic" education for Hong Kong
    About 120 thousand people have gathered around the young people who are carrying out a hunger strike against "brainwashing" imposed by Beijing on schools. Also, the great democrat Martin Lee Chu-ming. Protests held abroad.

    19/10/2011 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Card. Zen on hunger strike for freedom of education in schools
    The cardinal criticizes the decision of the Supreme Court in favour of government control (and China) which is likely to destroy the educational system of the territory, considered among the best. Card. Zen will take only water and communion every day. Revelations of donations received by him, attempt to cast suspicion on use. The long list of help he has provided: scholarships, donations to disaster hit dioceses , theological texts and translations of documents of the Church.

    04/09/2012 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Protests and strike against the start of 'patriotic' education
    Yesterday, the six schools chosen to test the new course responded with a boycott. Catholic schools are leading the fight. The admiralty is still occupied by students. So long as the government does not listen, "We will sit out here and more should join us," they say.



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    Beijing issues new, harsh draft regulations on religious activities

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