Speech from Principal 2010-2011
A Salute to Mr. Liu Xiaobo
26th October 2010
Dear Father Fung, teachers and students,
In December, 2009, when every family in the world was celebrating Christmas, Mr. Liu Xioabo was put into jail by the Chinese Government for eleven years. He didn’t involve in any violent anti-government activities and had just wanted to put forward the progress of democracy of China by drafting the Article 08 with his friends in his study room.
Starting from the June-fourth Movement in 1989, Mr. Liu was arrested, excelled, imprisoned by the government for many times during the past twenty years. But these measures cannot stop him from continuing expressing his good wish for a democratic China. He continues to criticize the shortcomings of the government policies and the dark sides of the country. And the most important point is that he has consistently sustained his peaceful struggle for an improvement on the human rights in China and consistently expresses his wish for democracy in his writing. He fully understands that his power is so small when compared with the authority of the government. He is using his mantis-like arms, as a Chinese proverb says, to stop the big car wheel from moving forward. He continues his work without fear, even though he understands that he may be sentenced to death.
When Liu Xioabo has been staying in prison for nearly one year, he has been awarded the 2010 Nobel Prize for Peace for his lasting dedication to peaceful advocacy of human rights and democracy.
Bishop John Tong Hon said in the Sunday Examiner, Volume LXIV No. 44, “I believe this is an honour for us as Chinese people. He is worthy of our heartfelt congratulations, as are his family and friends,” He continued, “Now, that the premier, Wen jiabao, has stated that the wish of the Chinese people for democracy cannot be resisted, I hope that Liu Xiaobo and all those imprisoned for pursuing of democracy and religious freedom will be released soon, so that these people can make their contribution to the country, and the reputation of our nation will go up in the eyes of the world.”
The noble act of Liu Xiaobo makes me think of a famous Chinese official and poet of South Song Dynasty. He was Wen Tianxiang. When he was going to be executed, he left the world his famous Thirty-two Words. “孔曰成仁，孟曰取義，唯其義盡，所以仁至。讀聖賢書，所學何事？而今而後，庶幾無愧。” Its meaning is, Confucius taught us to sacrifice ourselves for benevolence, Mencius taught us to sacrifice ourselves for righteousness. When we cannot maintain benevolence and righteousness, we may have to sacrifice. We have studied the teachings of the virtuous sages, but what have we learnt from them? We have to act in such a way that we will not regret at the present moment and in the future. Through reading this Thirty-two Words, I can see the tough and bright image of Mr. Liu.
Dear boys, you have to study hard for your examinations, but at the same time, I suggest you read more Chinese classic books and poems, because they are the invaluable treasure of our Chinese ancestors. You can find lots of wisdoms which may help you understand how to lead a meaningful life. Besides studying, you have to learn how to perceive things in a critical way, discuss life issues with each other and develop positive life values.
We may have a feeling that most Hong Kong people don’t like to discuss political issues. Sometimes we may have the misconception that the Hong Kongers are too money-minded and selfish. But, in fact, when it comes to justice or some major issues, we will surely stand out and voice our opinions so as not to disappoint our sages.
This year marked the 61st Anniversary of the People Republic of China. According to the history, Hong Kong people had contributed a lot of money to help solve the living problems of the Mainland people in the first thirty years of the Republic. In the second thirty years, Hong Kong people have contributed a lot of expertise and resources to help develop the economy of China. In the coming thirty years, I hope we can contribute ourselves in helping China to become a democratic and liberal country with justice and human rights.
In order to equip ourselves well, we have to practice democracy in our teaching and learning, in our school and in our families as well. We have to make use of the good conditions of Hong Kong, by walking our talk and help make Hong Kong a successful place with democracy and liberty. Then, Hong Kong may have the condition and chance to influence China to improve in these aspects and bring hope to the Mainland people.
Dear boys, as I always say, one of the missions of KTMC is to nurture future leaders of Hong Kong. So, please always keep this mission in your mind and equip yourselves well to help build Hong Kong and China a better place for Chinese people to live in.
Lastly, may I wish that Mr. Liu Xiaobo and all those who have been imprisoned for pursuing democracy and freedom of religion will be released from the jail soon. Let’s pray and look forward to seeing Mr. Liu receive his Nobel Prize for Peace on the stage of Stockholm Concert Hall in Sweden.
That’s all for my sharing this morning. Thank you very much for your kind attention and may God bless you all.
Inauguration Ceremony of Student Council and Prefects
4th October, 2010
Good morning Father Fung, Teachers and Students,
First of all, I would like to thank Mr. Yeung Wai Tat, the Chairman of the Student Executive Council, though he is not here today as he is now studying in the CUHK admitted through the Early Admission Scheme, and Mr. Wong Hong Yuen, the Chairman of the Student Representative Council, and the committee members of both the SEC and SRC, and also Mr. Hui Chak Pan, the Head Prefect, and all the Prefects for their dedicated service to the school last year. I would also like to congratulate the new Head Prefect, Mr. Leung Wai Hong, and his partners for having obtained the trust and support from the teachers and students. I have confidence that the new Prefect Team will not only help maintain the good discipline of KTMC but also act as the role models of their fellow schoolmates. I would also like to congratulate the new Chairmen, Mr. Chan Lok Yiu, and his cabinet ‘Faith’, Mr. Kam Yu Fai, and his cabinet ‘Understanding’, for being elected as the Student Executive Council and Student Newspaper Editorial Board respectively of our school this academic year. I believe, under their leadership, the school lives of all Maryknollers will further be enriched.
During the past two years, I have clarified with you the true meaning of freedom. I wish all of you will still remember that freedom doesn’t mean that you can do whatever you like with no limits and the higher the standard of self-discipline of a person, the more the freedom he may deserve. I am sure, both you and your teachers are working very hard for achieving this goal.
Before the SEC election this year, the members of the candidate cabinet, Faith, came to see me and shared with me their annual plan of the coming school year. I appreciated very much their good attitude, concerted effort, thoughtful ideas and superb creativity. I supported most of their suggestions and proposals except one, i.e. they suggested having one student representative to sit in our staff meetings. I asked them about the rationale behind the suggestion. They told me that it could make the school policies more transparent and provide a chance for students to voice their opinions about school matters to the school authority.
I explained to them that I supported the idea of enhancing the transparency of the process of enacting school policies but inviting students to sit in our staff meetings might not be so appropriate. As you all know that, the stake-holders of a school include the sponsoring body, school managers, all staff members, alumni, parents and students. In other words, all our work is accountable to all stake-holders and the benefits of each party has to be taken into account. Let me take the hottest issue related to the Hong Kong secondary schools at the moment as an example, i.e. the re-structuring of class structure. Whether a school will change its class structure from five classes to four classes at each level will not be decided by the Principal alone, but by the consensus of all stake-holders. The process of consultation before making decision is a very long and complicated one and that’s the reason why it is not appropriate to invite students to attend the process of making school policies.
On the other hand, I have counter-suggested to the then candidate cabinet to organize some kind of open forum for all Maryknollers and school administrators to sit together and share their different perspectives on school matters. In the gathering, the school administrators can explain the rationales and constraints of all school policies and school development plans to the students. And at the same time, students can give feedback to the school from their points of view. With mutual understanding, good communication and shared belief, I am sure it can help further develop the freedom and democracy of KTMC.
When the said open forum is organized by the Student Union, I hope all of you will join this meaningful function and I am looking forward to hearing your voices for the constructive development of our school.
Boys, the progress of KTMC needs your contribution and support. Let’s work hand in hand with the SU and Prefects to bring ourselves a brighter future.
Thank you and God bless.
Words from the Principal
Dear Fr. Li, teachers and boys,
Welcome back to school. I think all of you have made good use of the summer vacation to take a break, to up-grade yourselves and to prepare well for the new school year. The graduates of different years who got good results in the public examinations shared with us similar experience, that is, they made good use of the summer vacation to prepare for the public exam. I believe the F.7 students have followed suit.
Before delivering my speech today, I would like to extend our warmest welcome, on behalf of all the school members, to the following new members of KTMC:
- Mr. Victor Christianopoulos from Australia, our new NET, teaching F.1 to F.4 oral English.
- Mr. Liu Hok Him（廖學謙）, teaching F.1 to F.4 Geography and F.4 Liberal Studies.
- Mr. Lam Tsz Man（林子文）, teaching F.2 and F.4 English and F.1 Ethics.
- Mr. Chow Yuk Kwan（周玉?）, teaching F.1 and F.2 Chinese History and F.1, F.5 and F.6 Ethics.
- Mr. Ng Ho Nam（吳浩楠）, teaching F.2, F.3 and F.4 English.
- Mr. Yung Hap（翁俠）, teaching F.1 and F.2 Mathematics and F.2 Junior Science.
- Ms. Diana Gidwani, teaching F.1 and F.3 English.
- Mr. Wong Kwok Wai（王國威）, teaching F.3 Physics, F.1 Junior Science and F.1 Computer Literacy.
- Ms. Lam Pui Wai, Pat（林沛慧）, taking charge of the library and teaching F. and F.2 Civic Education.
I am sure everyone of you can learn a lot from the new teachers and I wish all of you will show your hospitality and assist the new teachers to accustom to the school lives of KTMC quickly.
The academic year of 2009-2010 marked the continuous success of KTMC. Not only because of quite a number of trophies and honours you got in different inter-school activities, but also good academic results that our F.7 and F.5 boys achieved in both the A-Level and School Certificate Examinations.
In the A-level Examination, the overall passing rate and credit rate are 96% and 40% respectively and it is nearly the highest credit rate in the recent years. The best performed student is Wan Wai Kit and his score is 3As1B. For the CE Exam, the F.5 boys have also done a very good job. The overall passing rate and credit rate of our school are 96% and 50% respectively. Nearly 70% of our F.5 boys get 14 points or above in their best six subjects. The overall CEE performance of 2010 is also the best in the recent years. Furthermore, five boys get 7As or above with the highest score of 10As. They are Chen Kin Lam, Kan Yuet Fan, Lam Yat Fai, Lee Chi Man and Chu Chi Ho. All of them are studying F.6 in our school and I hope they will share with you their methods of getting such remarkable results in public examinations. On behalf of the school, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all our hardworking teachers who have made a great effort and contributed so much time on nurturing our boys. May I invite all of you to give a great round of applause to our devoted teachers.
Our 10As student, Chu Chi Ho, told the public during the interview with the press that the aim of his future career is to help the under-privileged improve their living. This saying deeply touched Mr. Tsang Tak Shing, Secretary of Home Affairs. He sent a card to the school and asked the school to forward it to Chu Chi Ho and encouraged him to realize his aspiration. Now, may I call upon Chu Chi Ho to come up to the stage to receive the card. Chu Chi Ho, please.
(Chu Chi Ho, Do you have anything you want to share with the teachers and fellow schoolmates at this moment?
Thank you very much, Chu Chi Ho.)
This year, 2010-2011, is the second year of the implementation of the New Senior Secondary Education System. Dear Form Five boys, please always bear in mind the great achievements attained by your senior schoolmates and take them as your role models. I have told every current Maryknoller in the year book of 2009-2010 that our roles were not enjoying the harvest of the ancestors, but preparing a more stimulating environment conducive to all round development of the future generations of KTMC. So, as you know that the Form Five boys last year had left a record in the last Certificate of Education Examination, and I hope all of you will also work very hard and help establish a good start for KTMC in the first Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education, to be held in 2012.
I have always reminded you in the past two years, all of you are within the top 33% of the students of the same age. So, doubtless to say, getting credits, or you can re-name it as level 4, or above in the public examinations is surely within your competence. So, boys, please always bear in mind that the reputation of our school cannot only rely on the top boys of each form, but with the joint effort of each and everyone of you. If each of you do try your best, I am sure our school can achieve even greater heights in the coming years. What I told you is not a dream but the target of your senior schoolmates. On 4th August 2010, the day when the CEE results were released, I met some F.7 students in the corridor. I told them that about 70% of the F5 boys got 14 points or above in their best 6 subjects. Do you want to know what their response was? They said, “Dear Principal, the target of having 100% of KTMC boys getting 14 points or above is approaching near.” So boys, whether it is only a dream or an attainable goal, it all depends on the concerted efforts of ‘YOU’.
For the junior students, we will try our best to help you develop better studying habits and better acquiring skills so as to equip you well for the challenges lying ahead. I think most of you were shocked by the tragic incident happened in Philippines two weeks ago which led to the death of eight innocent Hong Kong citizens. Besides sadness and anger, most of the Hong Kong people were discussing on the wrong decisions and actions taken by the Filipino police. From this incident, we have learned that we are not prophets and we can’t tell what will happen in the future. What we can do is to get ourselves well-equipped and put what we have learned into practice to solve the unexpected problems that may arise. The process of equipping oneself may be harsh, but is necessary. Let me quote a real life example to illustrate what I am trying to say. Last year, I asked some F.7 boys about their views on our new homework collecting policy. They said that they didn’t like the policy at the beginning and finally agreed that it was a necessary requirement for students to keep their studies on the right track. They also confessed that if they had had the same requirement and training when they were in junior forms, they would have got even better academic results in the public examinations.
Dear boys, please be understood that reasonable requirements and liberty are not enemies but can co-exist. With reasonable training and proper development, you can surely deserve a sensible and liberal way of living in the future.
For success, I have also highlighted the importance of goal-setting to you before. I hope you still remember the SMART approach that I have mentioned, that is: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound. Last year, your academic and non-academic achievements have demonstrated that if the goals you set are ‘SMART’, the probabilities of realizing them are big and the rewards you get will be very encouraging.
This year, the school would like to remind all KTMC boys to pay more attention to our School Motto, with the focus on ‘Trust’. With this in mind, the school has chosen ‘Let your “Yes” mean “Yes” and your “No” mean “No”.’ (Matthew 5:37) 「你們的話該當是：是就說是，非就說非。」（瑪 5:37）as the Theme of School Life of this year. In order to actualize the theme in daily practice, our school has designed a project entitled “My Promise” to help you set up your own goals and guide you to attain them. Your Homeroom Teachers will inform you the details and help you achieve your goals step by step throughout the school year.
Dear boys, the road in front of us is long and winding, but I firmly believe, with the guidance of God and our concerted effort, all of us can further develop morally, physically and academically. May I wish you all another enjoyable and fruitful academic year.
May God bless you all. Thank you.