Global Times reported (August 19) that seven Hong Kong publishers have submitted changes to their General Studies Textbooks. General Studies is a core course in Hong Kong high schools. Traditionally, Hong Kong has allowed private sector publishers to design textbooks and high schools have been allowed to pick textbooks from approved publishers. According to the Hong Kong Education Bureau, the publishers are making adjustments to the textbooks based on new “guidelines” that the government has offered. So far, the media has discovered that the changes are mainly on political topics. For example, “separation of powers” was removed; the mention of “fighting for social justice via social movements like demonstrations and protests” was also removed. Pictures of protesters asking for a “true general election” disappeared as well. The publishers that do not follow the guidelines that the Education Bureau “recommended” will not be allowed to upload textbooks to the approved list.

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