Professor Nirmala Rao
The University Hong Kong
Nirmala Rao is Professor, Faculty of Education and Associate Dean & Director of Graduate Studies, Graduate School, The University of Hong Kong. She is a Developmental and Chartered (Educational) Psychologist who is internationally recognized for her research on early child development and education in Asian cultural contexts. This research has focused on the development, evaluation, and dissemination of evidence-based programmes directed at children in the early childhood stage of development with the objective of finding out why they have the effects that they do. She is currently leading the development of a pan-Asian measure of early child development. Recognition of her research is reflected in her publications and requests to provide technical expertise for the UN and similar agencies.
International Forum on Kindergarten Education
Kindergarten education in Hong Kong: Strive for excellence
This paper provides an overview of kindergarten education in Hong Kong spanning the last 20 years. It will focus on educational policies which have been effected to enhance the quality of the kindergarten education system including support for upgrading the qualifications of teachers, the emphasis on quality assurance, and the burgeoning funding to kindergarten education. There is no doubt that the sector is striving for excellence but in the early childhood education field both “quality” and “excellence” are contested terms. Against this background, the paper will critically consider the move towards creating a high quality kindergarten education system in the Hong Kong context.