Education Bureau announces over 3% average price increase for new academic year textbooks in Hong Kong

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18th April 2024 – (Hong Kong) Education Bureau announced today (18th) that the prices of printed and electronic textbooks for the 2024/2025 academic year will see an average increase of approximately 3% compared to the current year. While 25% of textbooks will have frozen prices, many core subject books will experience price hikes. For instance, the Chinese language textbook for the first year of junior high school will rise from HK$232 per book two years ago to HK$240, while the interactive Chinese language textbook for junior high school will increase from HK$225 to HK$245, representing a significant 8.8% increase.

In response to the implementation of the Civic, Economic, and Social Education curriculum at the first level of secondary schools in Hong Kong starting this September, the Education Bureau included the Chinese-English version textbooks in the “Recommended Textbook List” for schools to refer to when selecting books. Additionally, primary school science and humanities textbooks that have undergone evaluation will be gradually introduced starting from the 2025/26 academic year.

The Education Bureau further mentioned that the price increase of textbooks remains relatively moderate, considering the 2.1% rise in the Composite Consumer Price Index in February this year compared to the same month last year. The Bureau urged book suppliers to fulfil their corporate social responsibility and exercise restraint when setting prices to alleviate the financial burden on parents.

To assist students with financial needs, the authorities have implemented the School Textbook Assistance Scheme and the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance scheme. In the current academic year, approximately 200,000 students, accounting for 30% of the total number of primary and secondary students in Hong Kong, will benefit from these programs, with a total subsidy amount of nearly HK$1.1 billion. Furthermore, since the 2020/2021 school year, the Education Bureau has provided a consistent subsidy of HK$2,500 to each student in public secondary schools, primary schools, and kindergartens, aiming to alleviate the financial burden on families regarding educational expenses.