Sunday, October 25, 2015

Don't ignore vocational education

Published in  South China Morning Post, October 28, 2015 as "Need good plumbers and philosophers"

Paul Yip is concerned about the overemphasis on examinations and preparation for the university in Hong Kong schools, and the lack of emphasis on vocational education ("Poverty rate has fallen, but has quality of life risen in HK?" October 24).  The same unfortunate trend exists in the United States. 

Former US Secretary of Heath, Education and Welfare John Gardner warned us of the consequences of this policy:

"The society which scorns excellence in plumbing as a humble activity and tolerates shoddiness in philosophy because it is an exalted activity will have neither good plumbing nor good philosophy: neither its pipes nor its theories will hold water."

Stephen Krashen
Professor Emeritus
University of Southern California

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