[photopress:mba_chinese_kids_children.jpg,full,alignright]This is part (the fifteenth part) of the report of the work of the government at 2008 NPC and CPPCC Session, 2008.
The first point made was free compulsory education universally available in both urban and rural areas. To this end allowances and budgetary allocations would be raised.
Then came the promise of a form of subsidy: ‘After running trials in selected areas, we will completely stop collecting tuition and miscellaneous fees from all urban students receiving compulsory education starting this fall.
The report said that its second object was to vigorously develop vocational education. Almost every country has found that concentrating on academic degrees leads to a shortage of plumbers, bricklayers and other essentials.
In Australia roof slaters have to be flown in from England when there is work to be done which is daft. The report said: ‘We will strengthen the basic conditions for vocational education . . . in order to turn out high-quality skilled personnel.’ Excellent news.
Next the report promised to raise the quality of higher education. Basically this came down to a three point plan.
The first is to ensure that all students receive a well-rounded education.
Two, improve the quality of teachers by improving their wages and subsidies to make the profession more attractive.
Three, increase investment in education. This year, central government allocation for education will increase from last year’s total of RMB107.6 billion yuan to RMB156.2 billion yuan, and local governments will also increase their spending.
The report ended with stirring words:
‘China cannot modernize if education is not made universally available and if its quality is not improved. We must ensure that our children receive a good education, provide education that satisfies the needs of the people and improve the overall quality of the population.’
As the Duke of Wellington said on another occasion, ‘Damn right. And damn good, too.’
Source: China View