State-funded Outsourcing of English Language Education: Does New Education Privatisation Ensure “Quality Education for All” in Hong Kong Secondary Schools?

  • WALKER, Allan David 汪雅量 (Collaborator)
  • CHOI, Tae Hee (PI)
  • KO, Yue On, James 高裕安 (Collaborator)
  • TANG, Yee Fan, Sylvia 鄧怡勳 (Collaborator)

Project: Research project

Project Details


The study aims to examine and theorize the practice of state-funded outsourcing of English language education (ELE) focusing on its quality and equity, with reference to the Hong Kong context. Many governments have turned to state-funded outsourcing of education (Ed-outsourcing) to enhance the quality and economic efficiency of Education, and ultimately, the competitiveness of their societies (Barrera-Osorio, Guaqueta & Patrinos, 2012). The quality of state-funded Ed-outsourcing, what Burch (2009) termed new education privatisation, however, is disputed in the international literature (Ball and Youdell, 2008). It has also been documented that new privatization techniques have reproduced or even increased disparity in learning opportunities in many contexts (ibid.). Although some concerns related to quality and equity in Ed-outsourcing have been echoed in HK (e.g. the need for quality-control systems) (Chan & Ng, 2015), few, if any, attempts have been made to investigate changes and impacts at the school and government-regulation levels. Thus, this project intends to explore and theorize the emerging phenomenon of providing schools with state funds to buy and integrate third-party services into their delivery of education, focusing on its quality and equity.

Funding Source: RGC - Early Career Scheme (ECS)
Effective start/end date01/01/1730/06/19


  • Policy, equity, quality, outsourcing, privatisation


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