‘Kwa will burn out “. . . at the speed of FedEx,” China will do so over fibre optics:

HONG KONG Jan 20, 2007 (AP)— Angela Yiu and Stella Cheng spent weeks meeting with fashion stylists and photographers before deciding on the mini skirts and high heels to wear in their promotion campaign.

They’re not models peddling perfume or sports cars. They’re English tutors who earn good money helping secondary school students pass Hong Kong’s grueling exams to get into college.

“Their long legs are the most beautiful ones in the tutorial industry,” said Ken Ng, head of Modern Education, one of the city’s biggest tutoring businesses. “This is our selling point.”

Sex appeal has become a hot selling point, just as important as teaching ability and knowledge, in Hong Kong’s hypercompetitive world of cram schools or “bou zap se” in the local Cantonese dialect.

Attractive teachers are marketed like movie stars. Their schools show them off on billboards, full-page newspaper ads and TV screens in railway stations and on buses.

Some tutors have their own teams of stylists, fashion designers and photographers, Ng said. They also have personal Web sites, where potential students can see their photos, read their online journals and download video clips of “gag moments” in class.

ABC News: Hong Kong Tutors Selling Sex Appeal

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