Date
15 December 2017
Hong Kong is now seen as having a weaker education system compared to that of Singapore. Photo: HKEJ
Hong Kong is now seen as having a weaker education system compared to that of Singapore. Photo: HKEJ

HK falls behind Singapore in education league rankings

Hong Kong has slipped behind Singapore in a global education league rankings put out by UK-based Pearson Education, stoking fresh concerns about the city’s eroding strengths.

Hong Kong dropped to the fourth spot from the No. 3 position it held previously in a 2012 survey. Singapore, on the other hand, rose to the third place from its fifth spot last time, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Friday.

South Korea topped all the nations and places in the survey, moving up one notch and driving Finland to the fifth spot this year. Japan moved up to two steps to the second rank, while the United Kingdom remained in the sixth spot.

The success of top-performing Asian countries reflects a culture in which teachers and schools are highly respected and “teachers, students and parents all take responsibility for education,” the survey report said.

Students in South Korea, with the strongest test results, will have had to memorize 60 to 100 pages of facts, the report said. However, the practice raises questions about the long-term value of such kind of learning, Mingpao Daily News noted.

The rankings were compiled for Pearson by the Economist Intelligence Unit, focusing on an amalgamation of international tests and education data – including the OECD’s Pisa tests, and two major US-based studies, Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (Timms) and Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (Pirls) in 41 countries and areas.

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