Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture Alexis Tam Chon Weng said on Wednesday that the government plans to build a special needs school on the plot of land where the former greyhound racetrack is located.
Tam made the remarks while speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a religious ceremony for the upcoming four-day Macau Grand Prix that will start next Thursday. The ceremony took place at the Macau Grand Prix Building near the Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal.
The government told the operator of the former greyhound racetrack – Macau (Yat Yuen) Canidrome Co. Ltd. – in July 2016 to vacate the property in Fai Chi Kei within two years. The government pledged at that time that the plot would be used for educational, sports and community service facilities after the Canidrome’s demise. The racetrack was finally closed at midnight on July 20. The government is currently looking after the about 480 greyhounds left behind at the racetrack’s kennels by the company.
Tam first told the legislature late last year that the Education and Youth Affairs Bureau (DSEJ) had proposed to the government’s public works and planning entities that four schools be built on the plot, following the closure of the racetrack.
In August this year, officials of the Lands, Public Works and Transport Bureau (DSSOPT) revealed details of a development plan for the plot where the former greyhound racetrack and the adjacent government-run Lin Fong Sports Centre are located, according to which the plot will be earmarked for sports, education and community service facilities as well as government office buildings.
Speaking to reporters yesterday, Tam reaffirmed that the government is planning to build a special needs school on the former greyhound racetrack’s plot. He also pledged that the government will funnel more resources into the city’s education sector, particularly in the field of integrated education – the practice of placing special needs pupils in general education classrooms during specific time periods, based on their skills.
Tam also said that nowhere in the world was a government providing residents with such good welfare policies and measures, particularly for special needs pupils.