14 Jun, 2019
10 : 00
The Inauguration Ceremony of Yew Chung College of Early Childhood Education (YCCECE) concluded successfully on May 31 with Mr Kevin Yeung, JP, Secretary for Education, HKSAR as the officiating guest. On the same day, the Grand Opening of the “Pamela Peck Discovery Space” on the ground floor of YCCECE was also officiated by the Founders of the “Heart to Heart Foundation”, Ms Pamela Peck and Mr Paul Tse, JP, whose generous gift enabled the creation of this innovative play space for children from birth to age eight, the first of its kind in Hong Kong.
YCCECE Board of Governors, Council, faculty, students, alumni, donors and friends of the College, as well as members of the media all gathered at this momentous event to witness the unveiling of a new era of ECE in Hong Kong.
The many illustrious guests from overseas included esteemed ECE educators, scholars, movers and shakers of the global education sector, including –• Prof. Kathy Sylva, Professor of Educational Psychology, University of Oxford and Member of YCCECE Board of Governors; • Prof. Won Young Rhee, Professor Emeritus of Chung-Ang University, and Member of YCCECE Board of Governors;• Prof. Feng Xiaoxia, Professor of Beijing Normal University; • Prof. Young-Ja Lee, Professor of Duksung Woman’s University and Member of YCCECE External Advisory Committee;• Prof. Susan Fowler, Professor Emeritus (Special Education) at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and YCCECE Degree Programme Developer;• Prof. Marjory Ebbeck, Professor Emeritus of Early Childhood Education, University of South Australia, and YCCECE Internal Validation Panel Member.
Dr Betty Chan, Chairperson of YCCECE Board of Governors, remarked in her welcome speech, “As we officially inaugurate YCCECE and launch the ‘Pamela Peck Discovery Space’, I pray that this campus will witness many 'Wow’s' from children, teachers, parents, grandparents, domestic helpers and countless others who experience the joys of exploration and discovery, and truly realise the power of Early Childhood Education and learning through play, and the importance of the ECE professionals who can never be replaced by artificial intelligence! This is the legacy of Yew Chung; this is the legacy of YCCECE.”
Mr Kevin Yeung, JP, Secretary for Education, HKSAR, remarked in his speech, “As one of Hong Kong’s specialist institutions in Early Childhood Education, Yew Chung College of Early Childhood Education, sponsored by Yew Chung Education Foundation, plays a significant role in promoting kindergarten education and hence the development of our children. I am looking forward to welcoming knowledgeable, passionate and caring graduates from Yew Chung College of Early Childhood Education to join our teaching force in the years ahead. They will surely make our kindergartens a garden full of bright and happy children. Today also marks the grand opening of the ‘Pamela Peck Discovery Space’. May I extend my heartfelt gratitude to Yew Chung Education Foundation for developing such a wonderful place for promoting good practices in Early Childhood Education and for the benefit of our future generations.”
After the Inauguration of the College, Ms Pamela Peck and Mr Paul Tse, JP, Founders of “Heart to Heart Foundation”, were invited on stage to join Dr Betty Chan and Mr Kevin Yeung, JP, to officiate the Grand Opening of “Pamela Peck Discovery Space”.
Ms Nicky Weir, Centre Director of Yew Chung Early Childhood Development Centre, later took the stage to conduct a brief introduction on the facility, “We would not be here today without the generosity of the ‘Heart to Heart Foundation’, Mr Paul Tse and Ms Pamela Peck, who shared in our dreams and enabled the creation of this innovative vision. The ‘Pamela Peck Discovery Space’ has been specifically and expertly designed to accommodate early childhood development from infants and toddlers through to early primary years, ensuring that children within this age range would find a desirable, challenging, stimulating, and learning-though-play home.”
The ceremony was concluded with notes of appreciation by Prof. Shen Shir Ming, President of YCCECE, “Today marks the inauguration of Yew Chung College of Early Childhood Education and the grand opening of ‘Pamela Peck Discovery Space’. I would also like to take this opportunity to express our utmost gratitude and appreciation for the government’s support, entrusting Yew Chung College of Early Childhood Education to be the first degree-awarding institution in Hong Kong, and even Asia, to specialise in Early Childhood Education. Thanks to the generous donors and charitable foundations for helping our students excel in their studies, and the Board of Governors for providing us with insightful advice and guidance on all levels, leading us to strive for the pinnacle and remain as the pioneer in the ECE universe for over 87 years.”
YCCECE offers different levels of ECE programmes, including Diploma in Early Childhood Studies (DECS), Higher Diploma in Early Childhood Education (HDECE) and Bachelor of Education (Hons) in Early Childhood Education (BEdECE). With unique curricula and scholarships available for students from all walks of life, the College is devoted to cultivating future ECE professional elites. Meeting the latest trends and needs of society, the College’s flagship bachelor’s degree programme is now offering new concentrations in Special Education Needs (SEN), and concentration in Infant & Toddler Education (InTod), which is yet another ground-breaking development in Hong Kong.
The on-campus facility, “Pamela Peck Discovery Space”, took YCCECE almost two years to design and construct, taking inspiration from South Korea, Singapore, and Australia, and seeking advice from many international and local ECE experts, including those from Special Education, Infant and Toddler Education, as well as professional artists. The outdoor area of the hub boasts an interactive garden where children can experience the nuances and textures of the natural world, see the world from different perspectives while playing on the climbing frame or wall, create a whole new city in the sand box or have a taste of archaeology, or learn about mathematics and science in the water exploration area. The indoor section offers a space where children can discover and develop their talents and interests. From the Aberdeen-inspired Junk Boat climbing frame, the bamboo frame construction corner, the thematic role-play room, the MTR area with panels and a passenger car, the mini threatre where children can showcase their dramatic talents, to the instrumental wall that caters for musical creativity and performance, the possibilities are endless.
Yew Chung College of Early Childhood Education (YCCECE), a registered non-profit institution, was established in June 2018. It builds on the former Yew Chung Community College (YCCC), which was started in 2008 by the Yew Chung Education Foundation (YCEF), also a non-profit organisation. The success of the YCCECE is founded on the impressive track record of YCCC and YCEF’s more than 87 years of experience in Early Childhood Education (ECE). YCCECE aims to nurture passionate and innovative early childhood educators who can advocate for and bring about improvement in the field, and seeks to be recognised in Hong Kong and in the Asia-Pacific region as an ECE hub for its excellence. YCCECE boasts an impressive team of world-renowned ECE academics and local ECE leaders as advisers and consultants. Its teaching faculty hails from around the world, providing a wealth of international perspectives and expertise. Its student body is also multi-cultural and from diverse socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds. YCCECE offers Bachelor of Education (Honours) in Early Childhood Education (BEdECE), Higher Diploma in Early Childhood Education (HDECE) and Diploma in Early Childhood Studies (DECS). YCCECE is also committed to serving the wider community and sharing good practices with all who work with, care for, or care about young children. Thus, the College has established Yew Chung Early Childhood Development Centre (YCECDC) to provide Continuing Professional Development programmes for ECE practitioners, parents and caregivers. “Pamela Peck Discovery Space” in its Aberdeen campus is the flagship programme of YCECDC, with an interactive play space specifically designed for children aged 0 to 8 years old. Through expert facilitation by Discovery Space staff, children and adults will joyfully learn through play. This innovative play space in the Aberdeen campus will be open to the public in June 2019.