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Many culturally diverse families have called Hong Kong home for two or even three generations, and their population has been growing rapidly. For South Asians particularly, the average annual growth rate is 4.1%, the highest among all culturally diverse groups. Capacity building and social integration of this growing population is pivotal in making Hong Kong an inclusive society and an international metropolis. Ethnic minority (EM) languages and cultural differences should not impede their social integration, academic pursuits or career advancement.

“C-for-Chinese@JC” Project is created and funded by The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, co-created by three local universities and two non-governmental organizations. Through the collaboration of the home-school-community domains, this five-year Project aims to foster an effective teaching, meaningful and pleasurable learning, and culturally responsive environment, with a view to enhancing the Chinese proficiency of non-Chinese speaking (NCS) kindergarten students for their better transition to primary education and early integration into the community. 20 Network Schools serving over 1,400 NCS students and their families participate in the Project.

The Project has also devised an innovative approach to empower 140 non-ethnic Chinese youth to become multicultural teaching assistants (MTAs) through completion of the accredited Diploma Programme in Early Childhood Education (Supporting Learning and Teaching for NCS Children) at Level 3 recognized under the Hong Kong Qualifications Framework. They will perform effective and diverse roles as teaching assistants to the teachers, mentors to the EM kindergarten students, and connectors with the EM parents.

Upon completion of the Project, the outcomes and impact will include, inter alia -

  • An evidence-based model of home-school-community collaboration in supporting NCS students in Chinese learning;
  • Development of learning resources, culturally responsive pedagogy and school-based curriculum;
  • Capacity building of kindergarten professionals - educators, school leaders, social service professionals and EM youth;
  • Empowerment of parents, home and community stakeholders in support of the Chinese learning of EM students;
  • 4,000 teachers and practitioners forming a learning community with knowledge transfer and regular sharing;
  • Effective approach in supporting transition of EM students to primary education and early integration with Hong Kong community.