Supplementary Question on Legislative Council Meeting – Q1 Professional conduct of teachers

Q1 Professional conduct of teachers

MR CHAN CHUN-YING (in Cantonese):

President, the “T-standard+” the Secretary has referred to a short while ago was launched in 2018, but there is no mention of the need to abide by the law as a requirement in respect of the professional roles of teachers and principals. Instead, the Code, which is promulgated in 1990, states that a professional educator should show respect for the law and the behavioural norms acceptable to society as a whole.

The Secretary has made some lengthy remarks just now, but what I do not understand is why the Government cannot take the lead to issue an official guideline―it would be fine even if it is not a code―which incorporates these two elements? I believe this would facilitate compliance of both the schools and teachers.


To start with, while the requirement of abiding by the law may not be specifically mentioned in the “T-standard+”, being law-abiding is actually a must-do for every member of the public, especially the teachers who are role models for students. If they cannot even do so, they will definitely fail to meet some of the descriptions of behaviours and professional requirements for teachers and principals set out in the “T-standard+”.

Regarding what we are doing in the meantime, Honourable Members can see that we gave an account to the Legislative Council on 7 May of the experience gained from handling more than 200 cases in the past. We also released these documents and cases to all school principals in Hong Kong last week, hoping that through the schools, teachers could see what EDB considered problematic in these past cases and how we should deal with them.

In future, we will continue to make more efforts in this aspect, and we will provide more information gradually to school teachers on these areas, based on the sharing that we have learned from some cases. We can reconsider whether it is necessary for us to issue a code or some guidelines. However, there is indeed a code in society already, and we may need to consider whether such work should be taken up by the Government in a comprehensive manner. Yet, many people in society hold different views, and some of them think that the profession should be regulated by the professionals, etc.

Anyway, regarding how we would handle such cases, the experience that we have learned from such cases, what behaviours are considered as unacceptable by us, we will do whatever we can and we are happy to share such information with the community, especially the educators.