🌊 Urdu and Hindi cut from DSEs
John "self-proclaimed pragmatic" Lee
I might have cursed Cyril a bit in my opening message yesterday. Oops.
But here’s something to smile about: “Residents and NGOs help clear Hong Kong’s trash-strewn beaches, more than a week after heavy rain”
On Today’s Tide
Crime | Stand News to stand trial this Halloween.
COVID-19 | Government big wigs get the ‘rona.
Education | DSE welcomes Korean but discards Urdu and Hindi.
Behind the paywall:
Politics | John Lee’s interview exclusive (not with us).
Health | Exchange scheme to bring in mainland doctors.
Power | Cable bridge fire consequences continue long after flames die.
Business/Economy | Tai Po mall sold by Best Mart 360’s founder.
Become a premium subscriber for just $8US a month – extra daily news and weekend roundups!
Stand News sedition trial to come this fall
The sedition trial concerning Stand News is scheduled for 31 October and will take place over the course of 20 days. Stand News was an independent and local publication that closed down at the end of 2021 when police raided its office and froze $61 million worth of assets.
Stand News’ parent company Best Pencil (HK) Limited, along with ex-editor-in-chief Chung Pui-kuen and acting chief editor Patrick Lam, have allegedly conspired to distribute “seditious publications”. According to Chung and Lam’s lawyers, they will be pleading not guilty.
Other news in crime
A judge ruled that a police officer coerced a teen into taking responsibility for a fire at his high school two years ago. The teen was acquitted of the three charges set against him after testifying that the officer used intimidation to get the child to admit that he started the fire.
A (gross) man has been arrested for luring a 12-year-old girl into a public toilet before assaulting her.
Top officials catch COVID
COVID-19 in Hong Kong
New cases: 1,650
Total cases: 1,232,306
New deaths: 1
Total deaths: 9,398
COVID clusters: 26 people who went to Victoria Harbour Restaurant in Tuen Mun have reportedly caught the virus.
Other COVID news stories
Two government officials Eric Chan and Erick Tsang tested positive for COVID-19 via PCR test yesterday. They serve as the incoming Chief Secretary and constitutional mainland affairs minister, respectively. Both are now in isolation.
COVID consequences has left children chubby! A new study by the Chinese University and Paediatric Foundation found that the proportion of overweight and obese children increased from 4.8 to 13.5% from before to during the pandemic, due to no longer playing outside and being as active as before (but continuing to consume snacks and sweets because, well, children).
Macau’s casinos stay open as the government makes just about most other businesses close.
Korean to join DSE while other languages get the boot
DSE candidates will be able to take Korean language exams in 2025, set to join Japanese, French, Spanish and German. On the other hand, Hindi and Urdu will be removed from this roster.
Some criticisms of the choice to remove Hindi and Urdu from the DSE exams include hindering students of ethnic minority backgrounds (who speak either language) who would be able to take these language tests to help their overall scores. More on that here.
DSE exams are also on their way to becoming available to mainland school students from 2024.
Other stories in education
8,500+ students from Hong Kong have used the BN(O) scheme to apply to schools in Britain since September.
Events and deals
Support Harbour Times, our friends and partners by attending these events! Let everyone know who sent you by tagging @harbourtimes
HT x Program (soft opening)
I've been secretly hinting (badly) at this. To thank all of you readers, as well as support the local businesses that make Hong Kong special, HT has teamed up with various businesses to give readers special discounts.
As Premium Tiders you guys get a substantially greater discount at all partners stores. But even free readers will get discounts, so make sure to share!
Simply open up the link below and start supporting cool people that do cool things!
ReThink HK returns 5-6 Oct
HT is proud to once again be a media partner for ReThink - HK’s biggest and most exciting sustainability conference. This year’s conference invites more than 300 expert speakers to share their visions and insights, covering important topics like economic progression while coexisting with nature harmoniously, efficient use of resources, transformation to a low-carbon society, and circular economy for future generations.
Sign up here using the code HTP22 for 40% off!
For more local events, check out yesterday’s High Tide.
This is the end of your free time on Tide.
Become a Premium subscriber to see what lies behind the paywall:
Can’t go Premium yet? No worries, there are other ways to support High Tide:
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial