The use of students' second language as the medium of instruction in schools is quite common in former colonies of Western countries. Schools in Hong Kong have had this kind of experience for more than 150 years. In this study, three factors, namely economic, political, and educational, are found to affect the choice of medium of instruction in schools. In particular, the economic factor is found to be the dominant one for most of the time, while the educational factor has the smallest influence. Due to the change of the above three factors and their interactions over time, there were more Chinese-medium secondaryschools in the first 100 years (1842-1949) and then more English-medium secondaryschools during the transitional period 1950-97. However, the political factor suddenlybecomes dominant after the change of sovereignty- there is an abrupt drop in English-medium secondaryschools after government intervention in 1998. Educators should be more vocal and involved in politics in order to push the Government to make decisions that are educationally right. Copyright © 2004 Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business.
CitationHo, B., & Ho, K. K. (2004). The development trend of the medium of instruction in secondary schools of Hong Kong: Prospect and retrospect. Language and Education, 18(5), 400-412.
- Medium of instruction
- Secondary schools
- Second language