Macao Education Representatives Attended Value Education Workshop in Hong Kong
On 26 January 2024, the Diocesan Catholic Education Commission (Comissão Diocesana da Educação Católica, CDEC) co-ordinated representatives from local Diocesan Schools responsible for guidance, counseling, and moral education to attend the "Value Education School-Based Promotion Model Workshop" in Hong Kong. This workshop was held by the Religious and Moral Education Section (RMES) under the Catholic Education Office of Hong Kong to provide guidance on effectively integrating and cultivating values and attitudes that are important to stakeholders including Catholic Diocese, Education Bureau, school sponsoring bodies, and incorporated management committees, thereby constructing a school-based promotion model.
The workshop is one of the professional development activities for Hong Kong teachers in the 2023/2024 academic year created by the RMES. The session held at the Auditorium of St. Francis of Assisi's Caritas School in Shek Kip Mei was specially arranged by Dr. Francis CHAN Nai-kwok and his fellow members for the participation of educational representatives from the Macau Diocese. It was a day-long event consisting of six lectures, two school sharing sessions, and two group discussions. The workshop outlined the process of establishing and promoting a school-based value education framework into eight steps, teaching specific implementation methods, supplemented by successful examples from the Nam Wah Catholic Secondary School and the Good Counsel Catholic Primary School. It shared the considerations and details for implementing the eight-step process in both middle and primary schools.
To promote value education in Hong Kong Catholic schools, the RMES recently developed the "5A" initiative. The first 'A' (Attitude) reminds schools that, in addition to imparting knowledge and skills, they must also foster students' appreciation of universal values: positive and proactive attitudes and perspectives. The second '+A' suggests that teachers of all subjects should utilise their expertise to incorporate values and attitudes, adding rationale and explanations for value-based behaviours. The third 'AC' encourages schools to draw upon Chinese traditional cultural ethics and morals, aligning and complementing them with Catholic values, while respecting the Church's evangelistic approach that honours local culture. The fourth 'A+' adds a 'Holy Cross' to value education, representing the incorporation of the finest perspective on life: interpreting and enriching values through the teachings and viewpoints of Jesus Christ, marking this 'A+' as a signature of Catholic schools. The fifth 'AA' (All-Dimensional) represents a comprehensive implementation model of value education, focusing on whole-school planning and emphasising participation from all stakeholders including school authorities, parents, and alumni. This forms the basis of the 'eight-step promotion process' shared at the workshop: starting with seeking 'preferred attributes by stakeholders', 'school-based preferred attributes in graduates', 'school-based virtues and character strengths', 'designating virtue reasoning and virtue practice', followed by 'subject planning’, ' implementation', 'evaluation', and 'revision' for whole-school involvement.
Dr. Stephen Chan Teng-Fong, Director of the Office of the CDEC, particularly thanked Dr. Francis Chan and his members for inviting the Macau representatives to the workshop. After understanding the planning process and practical implementation outcomes of the school-based promotion model, he expressed appreciation concerning the outlined steps that guide schools to internalise and integrate universal values, Chinese culture, and major Catholic doctrines. Through the consideration of school-based graduate qualities, this approach can guide schools to reflect on their moral education at all levels and is particularly inspiring for schools in Macao. Dr. Stephen Chan went on to share some practices on value cultivation in Macao Diocesan schools, as well as the unique challenges faced by Macao schools in value education. Finally, he expressed hope that the Macao delegation would benefit from the workshop and further promote value education in their respective schools.
The Macao delegation included Mr. Kou Kam Tong, Vice Principal of Escola de Santa Teresa Macau; Mr. Jeremy Sou Pak Lam, Dean for Student Development of Colégio Diocesano de São José; Mr. Leong Hong Man, Head of Student Development Team of Colégio Diocesano de São José (5a); and Ms. Joyce Lam Sao Lan, Dean of Student Affairs of Escola São Paulo.