The Humanistic Education Foundation, unable to pay its employees for the past two months, yesterday held an auction of works donated by leading political figures to help alleviate its dire financial situation.
As the most prominent educational group advocating the idea of human-centered education in Taiwan, the foundation obtained many important figures' support in yesterday's auction.
Despite their absence, President Chen Shui-bian (
"We are facing the biggest financial crisis of the past 14 years," said foundation chairwoman Chu Tai-hsiang (
"It's a life-or-death situation for the foundation," Chu said. "If we do not get enough money as soon as possible, many educational projects will be forced to end."
For example, Chu said, the academic remedial project for junior school students coming from poor families in Sanchung, Taipei County, which started in August, will be forced to close if funds are not forthcoming.
"We do hope that those children who cannot afford to go to cram schools will have the chance to catch up with their classmates in academic performance," Chu said, adding that her foundation is dedicated to giving everyone and equal chance in education.
The foundation also plays the role of watchdog, identifying problems in the country's education system, advocating alternative educational ideas and helping create a social and political forum to discuss the purpose and means of education.
Its strong objection to corporal punishment for schoolchildren has been particularly popular in society.
At the fundraising luncheon, Chu said that the foundation's annual expenses reached nearly NT$100 million last year, including personnel expenses and the costs of educational projects across the country.
Donations, proceeds from the sale of the Humanistic Education Journal published by the foundation, government subsidies and revenue from educational activities still leave the foundation short of about NT$10 million. Chu said they aimed to raise money by auctioning the artistic works provided by people who are concerned about Taiwan's education and by the sales of luncheon coupons.
Shih Ying (
"Some of them often work until 11pm without asking for overtime pay because they are truly passionate about education," Shih said.
The paper sculpture that Chen offered with an asking price of NT$10,000 was sold for NT$125,000, and the collage that Lu donated was sold for NT$80,000. The foundation raised another NT$9.2 million from a sale later in the day.
Academia Sinica President Lee Yuan-Tseh (李遠哲) who is in Bangkok for an APEC, expressed his support for the foundation in a video tape played at yesterday's event.
"The Humanistic Education Foundation has been putting a lot of effort into educating society that everyone has his or her own value even if he or she does not perform well in school," Lee said. "And this is the concept that educational reform wants to carry out."
A proposal by the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) to permanently ban sitting in Taipei Railway Station’s main hall has received a mixed reaction online, with some social media users vowing to launch a sit-in at the station. Gatherings at the hall have been prohibited since Feb. 29 in accordance with the Central Epidemic Command Center’s policy of reducing crowd sizes in public places. A Facebook user organizing the sit-in said that the hall is a public space and there is no legitimate reason to ban sitting on the floor. He said he suspected that the proposal was made due to business considerations and
Chinese over-the-top (OTT) service provider iQiyi cannot register as a provider in Taiwan after the Mainland Affairs Council declared it to be an illegal service, the National Communications Commission (NCC) said yesterday. Both iQiyi and WeTV were deemed to be illegal Chinese OTT operators in an interdepartmental meeting on Friday last week, officials said, adding that this prohibits them from marketing their services in Taiwan or seeking subscribers. The government plans to block a local server that iQiyi has been using to transmit content to domestic audiences, which would disrupt its content transmission. OTT Entertainment Ltd, which is enlisted by iQiyi to
The Taipei Grand Mosque yesterday said its earlier decision to cancel Eid al-Fitr celebrations on Sunday to mark the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan would stand, even though there have been no new domestic cases of COVID-19 in more than a month. It will be the first time in 60 years that the event has not be held at the mosque. The Ministry of Labor had asked all mosques to suspend Eid al-Fitr celebrations and prayers this year, due to COVID-19 concerns, and encouraged Muslims to pray at home. This year Ramadan began on April 23 and is to
KAOHSIUNG VOTE: A city official allegedly wrote a message calling on supporters of Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu not to participate in the vote next month Prosecutors on Wednesday initiated an investigation of Kaohsiung Civil Affairs Bureau Director-General Tsao Huan-jung (曹桓榮) for allegedly telling supporters of Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) to interfere with a recall vote against Han, while pan-green politicians denounced the mayor and his team for devising ways to obstruct voting. After receiving complaints from residents, the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors’ Office launched its probe of Tsao for alleged breaches of the Civil Servants Election and Recall Act (公職人員選舉罷免法). Complainants provided evidence that Tsao on Saturday last week wrote on messaging app Line that Han supporters should not vote in the June 6 recall vote, saying: