Thu, May 18, 2017 - Page 3 News List

The outlook is bleak for younger generation: poll

By Sean Lin  /  Staff reporter

More than 60 percent of Taiwanese feel pessimistic about the future of the nation’s younger generation, while about the same number of people are not convinced that an office established by President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) administration to formulate policies to boost the nation’s birth rate would work, the results of a poll released yesterday by the National Policy Foundation showed.

The foundation, a Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) think tank, conducted the poll on education and the cultural policies implemented by the Tsai administration during its first year in office.

The survey found that 60.9 percent of respondents do not think the office would help increase the nation’s birth rate, while young people have a bleak outlook on life, with 64.9 percent of respondents saying that they did not have hope for young peoples’ futures, the survey said.

On the Mainland Affair Council’s statement that it welcomes Chinese students to pursue an education in the nation, 43.5 percent said the council’s actions belied its words, while 18.7 percent held the opposite opinion.

The survey found that government efforts to uphold transitional justice — including policies to pool government resources to establish historical facts about the 228 Massacre — have won less-than-favorable reviews, with 41.9 percent saying that they would not help promote ethnic reconciliation as the government proposes.

The government’s performance on drug prevention had the poorest review, with 67 percent of respondents giving it the thumbs down, the survey showed.

After the government’s pledge in March to improve the nation’s baseball teams, 28 percent said that it is now more difficult for teams to improve, 14 percent said it was not more difficult and 36.1 percent said there has been little change.

Foundation chief executive officer Sun Lih-chiun (孫立群) told reporters in Taipei that an incentive to attract talented Taiwanese students to study in China could lead to a “brain drain,” while KMT Legislator Apollo Chen (陳學聖) criticized the Ministry of Education for delaying implementing new curriculum guidelines for the 12-year national education system.

The ministry said that the curriculum guidelines, originally set to be implemented in September last year, were delayed because they are not yet finalized, which suggests that the administration lacks the necessary skills to solve problems, he said.

Foundation Education and Culture Division head Ho Szu-shen (何思慎) said the government’s bid to discredit Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) by removing Chiang’s statues and repurposing the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall in Taipei is its most prominent cultural policy, but that it serves no practical purposes to improve education and only intensifies conflicts in society.

The survey was conducted this month and collected 1,074 valid samples, with a margin of error of 2.99 percentage points.

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