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Title: Family engagement in the home-based learning mode: an enlarging divide in education
Authors: Dr. LIU Shuo 
Issue Date: 2021
Source: Social Transformations in Chinese Societies, 2021, Vol. 17(2), pp.92-100.
Journal: Social Transformations in Chinese Societies 
Abstract: Purpose This paper aims to provide an overview of the development periods of home-based learning in Hong Kong during the COVID-19 pandemic, then discusses the differences in how the more affluent and well-educated middle-class parents and the economically and culturally disadvantaged working-class parents have dealt with the challenges of this new learning mode in their children’s education. Design/methodology/approach This research mainly adopted the qualitative research method, and used data from multiple sources, including online and offline participant observations, informal interviews and second-hand official reports. Findings The preliminary findings suggest that due to the closure of the formal schooling system, the impact of unequal family resources – such as tangible economic investment and intangible cultural and social support – on students’ academic performance has been exposed, thus reinforcing the pre-existing inequality between different social classes. Research limitations/implications The findings of this paper are primarily based on preliminary observations and informal interviews, and it needs more systematic studies, both qualitative and quantitative, are needed to provide further empirical evidence to demonstrate the impacts of digital, housing and knowledge divide between the middle- and working-class families on students’ academic performance. Originality/value The paper presents new empirical data concerning the class mechanisms underlying home-based learning during the class suspension in Hong Kong. It shows that home-based learning in this challenging time has exposed the existing inequality in education.
Type: Peer Reviewed Journal Article
ISSN: 1871-2673
Appears in Collections:Sociology - Publication

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