[photopress:students_stamps.jpg,full,alignright]The Shanghai Postal Bureau has announced that students who took this year’s college entrance exams can now get their own postage stamps made to celebrate. The stamps show a blossom symbolizing prosperity, a portrait of the student and a message saying congratulations on passing the exam.
Five sheets of stamps, each with 16 stamps, can be printed for RMB200. Each stamp has a face value of RMB0.8 (9 US cents) and a sentimental value which is priceless.
The bureau said students could apply by bringing exam permits, an identification card and a photo to the post office. They need to sign a form authorizing their portraits to be used on a public product.
An official with the Shanghai Postal Bureau said, ‘The aim of the service is to commemorate the moment of passing the exam for students. Some students have already applied, because they think it is meaningful to record the exciting moment with stamps, which previously only featured portraits of icons who have made a great contribution to society.’
Not everyone is happy about this idea. Shanghai Educational Examination Authority, which organized the exam, said that issuing stamps was ‘purely commercial behavior’ and refused to officially comment.
Xiong Bingqi, professor at Jiao Tong University said, ‘The special stamp overemphasizes the importance of the exam, violating modern education concepts and practice. Students nowadays are encouraged to seek their own way of success. There’s no need to give special attention to whether someone passed the exam or not.’
Gu Xiaoming, sociologist at Fudan University, said that stamps were sacred public products issued in the name of a country. They shouldn’t be used to differentiate between citizens who could pass the exam or not.
Perhaps they should loosen up a little. Take a less severe attitude towards life. The Shanghai Postal Bureau probably thinks that a simple and quite endearing idea is being viewed with too much grave importance.
Source: China View