HC Deb 20 January 1959 vol 598 cc12-3
13. Mr. Rankin

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what steps have been taken by the Hong Kong Government to revise the school history books in the Colony to bring them into line with the changes that have taken place in Asia since 1945.

Mr. J. Amery

Any out-of-date textbooks in Hong Kong are steadily being replaced as more suitable books become available.

Mr. Rankin

Is the hon. Gentleman not aware that in recent editions of the history books the children in the schools in Hong Kong have been told that Nanking is the capital of China, that Chiang Kai-shek is the leader of China and that his flag is their national flag? Does not the hon. Gentleman regard statements of that type as a form of political indoctrination in the schools, and should he not inquire into it and try to stop it?

Mr. Amery

I hope the impression will not go out from what the hon. Member has said that there have been several instances of this. Only one instance has been drawn to our attention. There is only one edition, and it is not current in all the schools. It is not the policy of the Hong Kong Government to prescribe exactly what books should be used in all Chinese schools in the Colony. We issue a list of approved books, and it is up to the school supervisors to seek approval for the books they use.