Joint School Staff Development Day
Friday, 14th December 2007
Speech by Mr Michael M Y SUEN, GBS, JP
Secretary for Education
Professor LO, Professor CHUNG, Sr Catherine, Mrs CHIU, Distinguished guests, Principals and Teachers,
It is my great pleasure to join the Joint School Staff Development Day 2007.
The conference today is an annual event of the Quality School Improvement Project (QSIP) of the Chinese University of Hong Kong , a project financed under the Education Development Fund administered by the Education Bureau. With the collaboration and efforts of the Chinese University of Hong Kong and St Clare’s Girls’ School, over 800 teachers from more than 13 schools are gathered here today to share experiences in curriculum development and to enhance professionalism.
I understand that the conference is also the highlight of a series of events to celebrate the 80th Anniversary of St Clare’ Girls’ School. All along, St Clare’s aims at developing a team of professional teachers by creating a collaborative and sharing culture, as well as equipping them with updated pedagogical knowledge and skills. In the past few years, St Clare’s has made tremendous efforts to tailor make her staff development programmes to enhance the capacity of the teachers. The staff development workshops were kept close in line with the education reforms and focused on the school’s major concerns. For example, skills in project learning, effective teaching strategies to develop students to be independent learners and leaders have been explored. I am happy to note that the teachers of St Clare’s are at the forefront in pursuit of quality learning and teaching, striving for nurturing student’s multiple intelligences to enhance their all-round development.
With a view to better preparing for the implementation of the New Senior Secondary Curriculum, St Clare’s has set up specific teams to design the curriculum for Integrated Humanities. Since the 2006/07 school year, the school has tried out this school-based curriculum at junior levels. Teachers’ capacity is further enhanced by your active involvement in collaborative lesson planning and teaching. The professionalism and expertise of St Clare’s teachers are well recognized as many of them have been invited for sharing in the staff development activities of many other schools.
The New Senior Secondary Curriculum to be implemented in 2009 is not just about a change in academic structure. Its success greatly hinges upon the professional development of teachers that entails a paradigm shift. Exchange of experience is part and parcel of professional growth among teachers. The conference today will provide a precious opportunity for teachers from various schools to share what they have initiated and tried out in schools to prepare for the new curriculum reform.
Last, but not the least, I wish you all a very fruitful staff development day. I also take this opportunity to wish you all a merry Christmas. Thank you.
(about 430 words)