TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Some 40 percent of teachers in Hong Kong plan to leave or are considering leaving their jobs, with a majority of these citing growing political pressure and intervention that affects how they conduct their classes.
A survey carried out by Hong Kong Professional Teachers’ Union between April 29 and May 5 found that 40 percent of the 1,178 kindergarten, primary school, and high school educators polled will or are likely to quit or retire early, reported Sing Tao Daily.
Among those inclined to terminate their teaching career, 71.1 percent cited mounting political pressure as the main reason. Other factors include dissatisfaction with the development of Hong Kong society (55.3 percent) and the government’s education policy (38.6 percent).
For those committed to staying in the educational world, 58 percent justified it by saying they have a family to take care of, while 53.3 percent cited financial reasons and 43.9 percent said they are accustomed to life in the Chinese city.
The Hong Kong Professional Teachers’ Union urged the authorities to cease their political meddling in schools, warning that a brain drain of experienced educators could be detrimental to the quality of education, especially in secondary schools.
Beijing has tightened its grip on Hong Kong with the implementation of the draconian national security law last year and related measures that erode civil liberties in the city. According to reports, more than 100 civil servants face forced retirement for failing to sign a document pledging loyalty to the Hong Kong government.