Preparing Students for Careers in the ICT and STEM Industries: The Jockey Club Multiple Pathways Initiative
Under the Jockey Club Multiple Pathways Initiative funded by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, CLAP-TECH Pathway, being under the Jockey Club Multiple Pathways Initiative, is a project that aims to develop an alternative study pathway for students which equips them with the skills and experience for the new-collar jobs that the ICT and STEM industries in Hong Kong will require.
The project is a tripartite collaboration between three parties, the School of Continuing Education (SCE), a number of secondary schools in Hong Kong, and industry partners. Students who are pursuing the Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE), but who prefer a non-conventional mode of learning, can obtain work-ready skills and workplace experience from the lessons and activities of CLAP-TECH Pathway.
The study pathway will begin at the senior secondary school stage in the form of a new Applied Learning course named “Tech Basics”1, and it proceeds to a Higher Diploma programme which is to be developed by SCE. An important feature of the study pathway is that the participating industry partners will support student learning throughout the entire journey by offering mentorships, internships and other experience.
The new learning pathway will enrich the education system in Hong Kong by providing a complementary pathway, with multiple entry and exit points, to the traditional one within the mainstream education system. The learning pathway is unique in that it emphasises authentic experiences, catering to the needs of students who prefer a more hands-on learning experience to purely academic pursuits. The learning model is envisaged to help a large group of young learners develop themselves for employment opportunities in one of the fastest-growing sectors of the economy.
CLAP-TECH Pathway is largely based upon a learning paradigm first initiated by IBM in 2011, known as P-TECH (Pathways in Technology Early College High School), that has already been launched in 24 countries and regions, including Australia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, United Kingdom and the United States. The programme also draws heavily from CLAP for Youth @ JC, Hong Kong's first cross-sectoral support platform initiated by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, which helps young people discover their passions and abilities, and explore multiple pathways to a fulfilling adulthood through a five-year career and life development programme.
CLAP-TECH Pathway was mentioned in the Review Report2, released in January 2020, prepared by the Task Force on Promotion of Vocational and Professional Education and Training in which it recommended the Government should reference CLAP-TECH model to launch more VPET training pathways starting at Applied Learning courses and providing articulations. As CLAP-TECH heads into its second year, the Jockey Club Multiple Pathways Initiative is now exploring the possibility of a 2nd track in a different industry sector.
1. The offering of this programme is subject to the final approval of the University.