Par­ents putting too much stress on their chil­dren

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - COMMENT -

A YOUNG CHILD in Shang­hai was di­ag­nosed with alope­cia areata, or spot bald­ness, caused by too much stress. The two-and-a-half-year-old’s mother sent him to five train­ing classes — English, math­e­mat­ics, fine arts, pi­ano and pub­lic speak­ing — over the past two months in a bid to get him into a pres­ti­gious kin­der­garten next year. Peo­ple’s Daily com­ments:

Although this is an iso­lated case, it is un­de­ni­able that many par­ents worry their chil­dren may “lose the race at the start­ing line” if they do not at­tend train­ing cour­ses as early as pos­si­ble.

Those par­ents, who can af­ford to pay for var­i­ous kinds of ex­tracur­ric­u­lar train­ing pro­grams or the high fees charged by pri­vate tu­tors, usu­ally ig­nore the role they play in ed­u­cat­ing their off­spring.

A child’s own in­ter­ests are the best teacher. Too much forced ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing at an early age can eas­ily sti­fle the imag­i­na­tion and cu­rios­ity that are re­quired for true learn­ing and think­ing, which are things val­ued by all true ed­u­ca­tors.

The ed­u­ca­tion au­thor­i­ties have no rea­son to sit idle while anx­i­ety about chil­dren be­ing left be­hind at the start­ing line has be­come such a preva­lent con­cern of par­ents. The root cause is the un­fair dis­tri­bu­tion and lack of qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion re­sources. In­creas­ing the sup­ply of high-qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion re­sources, in­clud­ing teach­ers, should be a pri­or­ity on the gov­ern­ment’s to-do list.

Also, the tal­ent as­sess­ment sys­tem should be re­formed to down­play the im­por­tance of exam scores and in­stead bet­ter re­flect chil­dren’s com­pre­hen­sive abil­i­ties.

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