2012

Results for HKPDS SW 2012

The Hong Kong Parliamentary Debating Society Summer Workshop 2012 concluded earlier today at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. The 7 day event began with training workshops in the British Parliamentary format with coaches from Canada, USA, the Netherlands and China. 16 teams broke to the quarter-finals after 7 rounds of debates.

The Grand Final saw two teams from Hangzhou Foreign Languages School, China in the upper house with composite teams from Ying Wa, Island School, SPCC and DGS in the lower house. The four Grand Final teams, whom broke 1st, 3rd, 5th and 10th debated the motion that THW get rid of all national borders.

Champion: Ryan Tang and Jessica Yung (Team Draco Malfoy)
Grand Finalists: Team WOW! (Will Zhang, Elizabeth Hu), Team Lisabeth (Bon Bong, Brian Wong) and Team Fiona’s Illegit Baby (Fiona Zhang, Johnny Chen)
Best Speaker of the Grand Final: Ryan Tang


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2nd China National High School Debating Championships 2012 [MOTIONS]

Motions used at the 2nd China National High School Debating Championships 2012

R1 (Women’s Issues): THW promote women higher and faster in employment situations as a matter of government policy
R2 (Arts): THW make public funding for the arts available for the production of video games
R3 (Education): THW test teachers regularly
R4 (Rights): THW encourage its citizens to break laws in other countries that violate human rights
R5 (Popular Culture): THW teach the appreciation of popular culture in schools
R6 (Medical Ethics): THW criminalize healthcare workers who flee from work during a contagious epidemic
R7 (Social Dilemmas): THBT, upon death, every person’s body should revert to the State for scientific use, or for organ donation, depending on necessity
R8 (Sexuality): THW ban clinics that claim to cure homosexuality
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ESF pupils come up with the Baccalaureate goods

From the SCMP Jul 10, 2012

Of the few pupils who achieved perfect scores for the International Baccalaureate (IB) exams this year, one in 10 came from Hong Kong. Of the 109 students who achieved full scores of 45 marks on the global IB exams – considered one of the toughest pre-college exams in the world – at least 12 of the top achievers were from Hong Kong.


English Schools Foundation (ESF) students continued to achieve strong results this year, with the number of students achieving full marks increasing to nine from four last year. Local direct-subsidy schools the Diocesan Boys’ School and Creative Secondary School, each had one student get the full score in their first year administering the exams. Victoria Shanghai Academy also had one pupil with the top score.

“We are proud of the hard work we’ve put in,” said Deep Vaze, the only student from the ESF Island School to earn a perfect score. Vaze credited his score to the competitive and supportive atmosphere created by his teachers and classmates. He will be studying at Harvard University in September.

The other top scorers from ESF schools were Cindy Ling, Hedy Man Pui-ying, Rupert Phillips and Edward Tam Yuk-wang from King George V School; Calvin Po, Anahita Sharma and Ronald Yip from South Island School; and Sarah Chan from Sha Tin College.
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Let the refreshing begin!

Tonight/Today/This morning/This afternoon is the time when hundreds of people will be quietly sat around their computer with their finger over the refresh button as they await the release of IB examination results for May 2012. Results are retrieved online with different schools having different release times. Interestingly, some students have been notified by their school of their results, which seems to suggest that schools have already had access to the results of their candidates.

Global statistics have been released by the IBO (see here). Notably, “On average, Diploma students scored 29.83 with 109 achieving the maximum score of 45 points.”

Norway: Part 2

I spent the remainder of my two weeks in Norway with Heidi (Norwegian first year) in Oslo. What a city, and what a week. Oslo is small enough to traverse on foot and makes visiting everything a heck of a lot easier. At the same time, it is big enough to have a bit of everything; lots of parks, museums and attractions, all within easy access. I also loved the amount of green space in Oslo, it’s really quite a change from Hong Kong, and surprising how much green space can be found in the little city center. I had quite a bit of sun, generally good weather and even managed to avoid the heavy rain. Boy did we do a lot that week.

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Norway: Part 1

After many goodbyes and farewells at the formal conclusion of my high-school life, I promptly set-off for Norway, where I spent about two weeks. I, along with a group of above a dozen other AC students managed to land at Oslo Gardermoen airport despite a lost passport, two lengthy full-security bag checks and a lot of running from one place to another. After a (relatively) short train journey and a car ride, we arrived at Jacob’s (Norwegian co-year of mine) where we were more than happy to crash after a few sleepless nights signing yearbooks, or sleeping at Heathrow as was the case for a few first years.

The next two days were surprisingly lazy, consisting of a bunch of games in Jacob’s garden as we enjoyed the Norwegian sun, a lot of brilliant food and a trip to the beach somewhere along the way. I don’t know what got the better of me, but I somehow found myself atop a 10 meter diving platform, committing myself to launching off it. It’s probably relevant to note that I’ve never dived off anything taller than 3 meters and even then, (some 5 years back?) emerged with a sore back. 10 meters is a long way, but the scariest thing is the 3-4 seconds before you hit the water. It was enough time for me to wonder what exactly I was doing before I plunged into the water; or in the case of Oli (my Welsh roommate), to scream f*** 4 times. Let’s just say I probably won’t be diving anytime soon =D

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And we’re back!

Wow, it’s been a long time since my last post. IN fact, this has been the longest hiatus from blogging since I started back in October 2009. Although I continued blogging during trips overseas, debate championships and even my IGCSEs, the final IB exams were unfortunately, successful in removing my fingers from the keyboard. Thankfully, IB Exams are now over and all that remains is waiting for the results.

In the end-of-year melee at AC, what with yearbook signing and goodbyes, I decided not to post anything. Then it was off to Norway for a short holiday, much-needed after a two-year slog at AC. Then some friends visited Hong Kong, and I became a de-facto tour-guide. After all that, I finally had time to catch-up on a bit of sleep (two years worth), unpack and generally get life back in order.

Thankfully, all that is now dealt with. So let the summer begin!

Appearance, Appearance, Appearance

After much attention on the 2012 Chief Executive Elections, Leung Chun-ying ultimately emerged the new Chief-Executive elect. Although not seen as the ideal candidate, he certainly held the lead in terms of opinion polls, and probably has some genuine support, more so than many of his rivals. A major part of his victory was down to his ability to project a sense that he was the public’s choice and Henry Tang merely China’s choice. This appearance was certainly helped by his visits to public housing estates etc.

What is surprising is his failure to recognize the importance of public perception in the aftermath of the vote. His first order of business, visit the Chinese Liason office. Certainly there are good reasons to do so, though I am doubtful of his explanation. However, for argument’s sake, let’s put aside the suggestion that he went to thank the Chinese Liason Office for their unofficial official support at the end of the campaign. Even if he had a legitimate reason for visiting, he should be well aware of the perception that it would give. I think it is safe to assume that he doesn’t live in a vacuum of his own, which means that he would be fully aware of media reports on the heavy show of hand by the Chinese Liason office as well as the fear that the Chinese government was unnecessarily meddling in Hong Kong affairs. Then it should be clear, even if there is a good reason to visit the Liason Office, such as visit would best be done at another time, in another place, in a more sensitive way. What baffles me is how a candidate can be so conscious of public sentiment during the campaign, and almost instantly ignore or fail to even consider public perception.
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Yes, or just No? Public opinion during HK Chief Executive Election 2012

This year’s Hong Kong Chief Executive Election has been anything but normal. As I noted last time, it was instrumental in creating new norms that I feel will be beneficial in the future. One of the more interesting aspects was of this years campaign was the swings in public opinion, which I believe had a distinct impact on the race as a whole. More interestingly, was support for any of the candidates a ‘Yes’ in support of them, or merely a ‘No’ in opposition?

From the off, Leung chun-ying seemed to have the upper hand in public opinion, with regular reports of how he was besting Henry Tang by sometimes double digits. On the surface of it, it seemed that the Hong Kong people prefered Leung, who was seen as having an outsiders chance of dethroning Tang, who at the time was perceived as ‘China’s pick’. In many respects, this may be true. Certainly, Tang was the first to be hit by a series of scandals with his marriage laid out in full view, followed by massive cranes being put outside his Kowloon Tong residence. So in the midst of the campaign, you had Leung, who was seen as popular and the people’s choice, in comparison to Tang who was scandal hit and China’s choice.

With Tang’s rather unwarranted outbursts revealing Exco meeting details, it became increasingly clear that he would be an unviable candidate, lacking both public opinion and having a long series of unforced errors. Attention then swung quite strongly towards Leung. However, Leung turned out to have a closet of his own with allegations of corruption and very-late-coming allegations from Tang of being an advocate for greater power and more limited freedoms. Also, in the closing stages of the campaign, there were further questions as to whether Leung was an underground member of the Chinese Communist Party. All this helped turn the perception of Leung as the under-dog to the presumed Chinese pick, something that the Chinese liaison office seemed to support by almost openly canvasing for electors to vote for Leung.
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