In spite of the fact that there are concerns that teachers may leave the region as a result of increased restrictions, foreign English-language teachers who work for the Hong Kong government are required to take an oath of loyalty to the territory.
NETs and advisors working at government-run schools in Hong Kong must sign a declaration to continue working by Tuesday next week, according to the Hong Kong Education Bureau.
Oath-taking requirements have been imposed on a growing number of occupations in Hong Kong since 2020 in order to satisfy the Chinese government’s demand for allegiance.
It is expected that all NETs would pledge their devotion to Hong Kong and the territory’s constitutional document, the Basic Law; they must also be accountable to the government.
A failure to sign the statement would result in contract termination, the officials said on Saturday.
According to a government spokeswoman, the new statement would “further safeguard and promote the core values that should be upheld by all government employees” and guarantee efficient administration.
Students in Hong Kong’s primary and secondary schools are now required to take the NET program, which was implemented in 1997 to enhance their language abilities.
Market-leading incomes aren’t enough to keep NETs in the workforce; they also get government subsidies and other incentives to help keep them there. One-third of NETs at secondary schools in 2020-2021 are expected to leave, according to a government assessment released in April. This is the largest percentage in five years.
Net retention and attrition rates are “largely stable,” according to authorities.
According to Kevin Yeung, Hong Kong’s education secretary, a rising number of NETs have departed the city because of the city’s rigorous “zero COVID-19” policy.
In April, he told legislators that “There are no substantial grounds for attributing the departure of NETs, or their decision to or not to come to teach in Hong Kong to our compulsory quarantine measure.”
In October 2020, the loyalty requirement was enforced on public personnel, and seven months later, it was expanded to government employees who were employed on a temporary basis.