Don’t Ask, Do(n’t) Tell: Homeschooling in Hong Kong

Esther Erlings

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Hong Kong’s history of compulsory schooling (as opposed to education) commenced under colonial rule and has been maintained by the local government following the 1997 Handover. Beyond the exception of “reasonable cause,” homeschooling, or elective home education, is in principle prohibited under the laws of Hong Kong. However, there is evidence of a growing homeschooling community in Hong Kong that relies on loopholes in the law and an apparent de facto government policy to operate. This article sets out the background, legal framework, and homeschooling practice in Hong Kong. It criticizes the current situation from the perspectives of legal certainty and children’s rights. The author suggests that the government should take action to devise clear laws and public policy in relation to elective home education.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)307-319
Number of pages13
JournalAsian Journal of Law and Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019


  • homeschooling
  • education
  • children's rights
  • colonialism
  • Hong Kong


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