Happy School Campaign 2023-24

Happy Schools Campaign

Happy Schools Campaign 2023-24 Online Briefing Session


Happiness is the experience of joy, contentment, or positive well-being, combined with a sense that one’s life is good, meaningful, and worthwhile. As schooling experience is one the most influential of human endeavors in terms of shaping the courses of our lives, education has been recognized as something that can enhance happiness and well-being through contributing to students’ holistic development. Promoting happiness in education has gained attention and popularity all around the world. 


Happy schools prioritize the overall well-being and happiness of students, teachers, and staff. They also create a positive learning environment and culture where students feel safe, supported, and motivated to learn. It encourages creativity, critical thinking, and a love for learning. Research has shown that happy students are more engaged, motivated, and resilient in the face of challenges. By fostering positive emotions, a sense of belonging, and meaning connections, students are empowered to reach their full potential and become compassionate, confident, and well-rounded individuals. Thus, happy schools lay the foundation for academic excellence, emotional well-being, and lifelong success. 


Today’s students, teachers and school leaders face many challenges, and stress and socio-emotional distress are surging among the students. Now, perhaps more than ever, it is time to call for education systems to shift away from traditional measures and to instead embrace a diversity of talents and intelligences by recognizing values, strengths and competencies that contribute to enhancing happiness.


Inheriting experience in 2022, Chief Happiness Officer Association continues to launch the “Happy School Campaign 2023-2024” to create a thriving ecosystem that prioritizes the happiness and well-being of students, teachers, staff and the entire school community. Happiness is not just a destination; it is the very path that leads us to a bright future. 


Let’s pledge to tell the world the good education stories of Hong Kong together.


  • To honor and award the schools for their tremendous effort in driving well-being and happiness in the school community
  • To promote the holistic development and emotional well-being of students by creating positive learning environments that foster happiness, engagement and success
  • To advocate for the integration of happiness and well-being in educational policies and practices
  • To establish an active exchange of best practices among the awarding schools and the community


  • To recognize the school’s commitment to promoting happiness, well-being, and a positive learning environment
  • To enhance the school’s reputation locally and regionally and position it as a leader in fostering a happy school approach
  • To acknowledge the school community’s collective efforts in creating a happy and supportive learning environment
  • To demonstrate the school’s dedication to holistic education and attract attention from prospective students, parents, and community members
  • To track the changes in happiness levels over time and gauge the effectiveness of implemented school strategies through industry-recognized survey
  • To attain opportunities for knowledge exchange, sharing of best practices, and collaborative initiatives aimed at further advancing the well-being and happiness of students


Happy school is one that promotes holistic learner development, encompassing mental, physical and psychological well-being and providing emotional support to become “a place where the child can grow”. Promoting students’ happiness and well-being in schools does not imply that learning be made easier or require less effort, but rather, that such approaches could help fuel a genuine love of learning in and of itself.

In the happy school, learning should be something essentially enjoyable that gives students the self-motivation to strive for excellence. It is the key to ensuring better well-being and health, higher academic achievement as well as success in future life and work of our next generation.


With reference to the Global Happy Schools Framework of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and considering the local culture, current school situation as well as the education system, CHOA designs the happy school framework that is based on PERMAV Theory – positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning, achievement and vitality. It provides a starting point as an integral reference for measuring the quality of learning in schools that looks beyond strictly academic outcomes. 

The framework is divided into 3 categories – People, Process and Place in response to 6 main happy school principles:

  • Not at the expense of academic priorities
  • Provide students with better learning experiences
  • Encourage school-wide culture of learning, creativity, and innovation
  • Promote trust, tolerance, and cooperation between school community members
  • Respect for diversity and difference
  • Commitment to rigor, engagement, and joy in all learning space

5.1    People – refer to all human and social relationships  among members of the school community and is  considered to be particularly important among the 3  categories

  • School leaders include the happiness of the school community as a factor in monitoring system success
  • School leaders promote school-wide positivity and growth mindsets
  • School leaders coach, collaborate with, and allocate planning time to teachers to create happy learning environment
  • Teachers invest in empathetic relationship-building with students
  • Teachers share personal happiness with students
  • Teachers believe in the potential of each student
  • Teachers build partnerships with parents
  • Students feel a sense of belonging at school
  • Students engage in peer learning and school activities
  • Parents pursue partnerships with teachers based on listening, understanding, and sharing knowledge
  • Parents sustained engagement in students’ learning
  • School and community work together to prioritize happiness at school

5.2    Process – encompass teaching and learning  methodologies that can enhance students’ sense of  well-being, and gain non-academic skills and competencies

  • The workload of the school for students is manageable
  • The assessment at school can mitigate students’ stress
  • Innovative pedagogies and assessment strategies are used at school
  • The school provides students with learning experiences that promote curiosity, inquiry, and creativity
  • The school provides students with learning content that fit the local culture and, at the same time, globally conscious
  • The school has a feedback mechanism for students to receive the teacher’s opinions and comments timely
  • The school allows students to manage stress and emotions through self and communal reflection
  • There are regular celebrations of peer achievement at school
  • Students have freedom of choice for a personalized teaching and learning experience at school
  • The school provides students with extracurricular activities, sports and arts activities and a variety of school events

5.3    Place – refer to contextual factors that include the physical environment and the school atmosphere

  • Teachers and students have personalized school spaces
  • The school provides multi-functional learning spaces that enable physical and pedagogical flexibility
  • The school adopted principles of Universal Design for learning, e.g. including disability access
  • The school maintains healthy, environmentally sustainable physical conditions, considering lighting, temperature, noise, ventilation, furniture comfort, nutrition, etc.
  • The school provides safe, engaging, interactive digital and hybrid learning environment
  • Use of communal outdoor space for unstructured learning activities
  • Use of school as a community learning and social center



  • Mr. Eddie Ng, GBS, JP (Former Secretary for Education in the HKSAR Government, Honorary Chairman of Chief Happiness Officer Association)


Committee Members

  • Mrs. Bally Wong  (Founder of ABC Pathways Group)
  • Dr. Cecilia Tam (Visiting Fellow of Department of Social & Behavioural Sciences at City University of Hong Kong)
  • Ms. Clio Chan (Principal of Creative Primary School)
  • Mr. Corwin Kan (Assistant Principal of St. Stephen’s College)
  • Prof. Randy Chiu, MH (Professor Emeritus of Management at Hong Kong Baptist University)
  • Dr. Sylvia Chan, MH (Principal of Ying Wah Primary School) 
  • Ms. Mary Suen (Founder & Executive Chairman of Chief Happiness Officer Association) 


Happy School Campaign 2023-2024 is open to all kindergartens, primary schools and secondary schools in Hong Kong. The schools are encouraged to share their real cases, remarks and videos on their “Happy School” execution and nominate a principal, 2 teachers and 3 parents to complete the survey checklist. The cases should be implemented in the past 24 months (namely between 1st September 2021 to 31st December 2023) for their school community.


8.1   Star Award 

  • It serves to recognize the schools that can demonstrate their strength across three categories of Happy School Framework: People, Process and Place
  • Schools that achieve a passing score in both the Happy School Survey and Supplementary Information Scoring by the Judging Panel will be granted the Star Award

8.2   Grand Award

  • It serves to recognize the schools that can demonstrate their strength across three categories of Happy School Framework: People, Process and Place
  • Schools that achieve a passing score in both the Happy School Survey and Supplementary Information Scoring by the Judging Panel will be granted the Star Award

8.3   Special Awards

A number of Special Awards will also be granted to the schools with outstanding showcases in different individual areas

  • Joyful Campus Award – measures whether the participating school can provide a positive learning environment or room for positive emotional development, as well as mitigating students’ negative emotions
  • Enthusiastic involvement in Learning Award – measures whether the participating school can engage and motivate students in learning and other activities. The measurement further extends to engaging other stakeholders in students’ learning
  • Supportive Bonds Award – measures whether the participating school can create a supportive environment for positive relationships and social connections between students and other stakeholders. The relationships should be two-way and should involve effective communication
  • Growth and Diversity Award – measures whether the participating school can help students to develop a meaningful life. The meaning should not only focus on oneself but extend to a larger community and respect diversity and individual differences
  • Inspiring Potential Award – measures whether the participating school can release students’ potential and to reach high achievement. Schools should be able to develop and assess students’ abilities in different aspects (not limited to academics)
  • Diverse Vitality Campus Award – measures whether the participating school can help students develop vitality in learning. This includes, but is not limited to, providing suitable environments, creating rich learning experiences, and various activities 


Activities Date
Enrollment to Happy School Campaign16th October 2023 to
30th November 2023
Happy School Campaign 2023-2024 Online Briefing30th October 2023
Happy School Survey Checklist & Supplementary Information Submission30th Novermber 2023 to 12th January 2024
Result Announcement for Happy School Campaign 2023-20242nd February 2024
Happy Schools Campaign 2023-2024 Award Presentation Ceremony20th March 2024
Happy Schools Campaign2023-2024 Forum for winnersMay, Sept & Oct 2024
Deadline for Best Practice Sharing Paper & Video SubmissionMay 2024
Publish Happy Schools Campaign 2023-2024 Best Practice Booklet & Share the Best Practice VideoJune 2024


  • Participation fee for Kindergartens: $800
  • Participation fee for Primary Schools & Secondary Schools: $1,800
  • The participation fee covers ONE free seat at the Recognition Presentation Ceremony
  • Additional ticket fee and arrangement of Award Presentation Ceremony will be shared after result announcement
  • Participation fee can be settled on or before 24th December 2023 by the following methods:

  i.        Bank Transfer in HKD to


Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited



Account No.



Please mark your account number / name on the pay slip & email the pay slip to: info@choassociation.org or WhatsApp @ 6263 6263

ii.        By FPS


Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited

FPS Identifier



Please email the FPS record to : info@choassociation.org or WhatsApp @ 6263 6263

iii.        By Cheque

Cheque payable to



Please mail a crossed cheque to

Flat 2112, 21/F, The Star, 18 Yip Shing Street, Kwai Chung, New Territories.



Judging ProcessDetails

Part 1

Enrollment Form Submission

  • All interested schools have to submit the enrollment form by 30th November 2023 (Friday) through (LINK) or email to info@choassociation.org
  • CHOA will confirm the enrollment in 3 working days.

Part 2

Happy School Survey Checklist Submission

  • All participating schools have to submit happy school survey checklist by 12th January 2024 (Friday)
  • Schools have to nominate a principal, 2 teachers and 3 parents to complete the survey checklist
  • Participating parents should have a child who is currently studying in the school and the children come from different grades

Kindergarten: K1, K2 & K3

Primary School: P1-2, P3-4 & P5-6

Secondary School: F1-2, F3-4 & F5-6

Part 3

Supplementary Information Submission

  • All participating schools have to submit supplementary information by 12th January 2024 (Friday)
  • The supplementary information should include real cases or remarks of up to 5 pages and a video of up to 5 mins 
  • The content should be implemented in the past 24 months (namely between 1st September 2021 to 31st  December 2023) for their school community 
  • The school should produce the video by themselves and owns the relevant intellectual property right



•   The following criteria are taken into account in the selection of Happy School:

12.1 Objective Setting
   • This criteria carries 20% towards the total score
   •The school demonstrated a clear objective and expected goals
   • The objectives addressed the Happy Schools Framework – People, Process & Place

12.2 Implementation Process 
   •This criteria carries 30% towards the total score
   • The initiative was designed with relevant content to meet the expected goals
   •The initiative was effectively implemented
   • Students and different stakeholders were actively involved in the process

12.3 Achievement & Outcome
  • This criteria carries 30% towards the total score
  • The quantifiable and psychological outcome were obtained and evaluated
  • The initiatives achieved the stated objectives and demonstrated sustainable outcomes

12.4 Innovation & Uniqueness
  • This criteria carries 20% towards the total score
  • The initiatives were innovative in its concept, idea, policy, design, and implementation