Concern over Hong Kong record student dropout rate

Hong Kong’s eight publicly funded universities last year recorded the highest number of dropouts since at least 2004, with more than 2,100 students quitting school amid the double whammy of social unrest and the COVID-19 pandemic, writes Chan Ho-him for The South China Morning Post.

New figures released by the University Grants Committee, the main funding body for the city’s public institutions of higher learning, also showed that some universities were hit harder than others, with one experiencing a 40% increase in dropouts in 2019-20 compared to the previous academic year.

Most universities cited personal and family issues as the main reasons for the withdrawals, but student leaders said some of their peers had dropped out to pursue studies overseas following 2019’s anti-government protests. The dismal figures came hot on the heels of previous surveys showing dozens of primary and secondary schools similarly reporting more students dropping out over the past year, including at traditionally elite institutions, with many of the youths leaving Hong Kong altogether.
Full report on the Bangkok Post site

Meanwhile, Chan Ho-him also reports for the South China Morning Post that Hong Kong universities’ international reputations appear to have taken something of a hit – at least in certain disciplines – with many local institutions experiencing declines in a global league table ranking the quality of the education they offer in various subjects. Eight of the nine local institutions included in the table by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) saw some of their academic programmes perform worse this year than last, with the University of Hong Kong experiencing the most subjects declining.
Full report on the SCMP site