City to im­prove in­ter­na­tional cur­ricu­lum

All schools at the com­pul­sory ed­u­ca­tional level have to teach con­tent reg­u­lated by the State

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - By ZHANGKUNin Shang­hai zhangkun@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Shang­hai will im­prove its su­per­vi­sion of the in­ter­na­tional cur­ricu­lum in pri­vate schools, but this will not af­fect in­ter­na­tional schools for ex­pa­tri­ate stu­dents, au­thor­i­ties said.

Shang­hai Mu­nic­i­pal Ed­u­ca­tional Com­mis­sion held a con­fer­ence last week on the ad­min­is­tra­tion of pri­vate schools, high­light­ing prob­lems such as en­rolling Chi­nese stu­dents in in­ter­na­tional de­part­ments; teach­ing Chi­nese stu­dents the in­ter­na­tional cur­ricu­lum; and weak­en­ing foun­da­tion cour­ses, such as Chi­nese or ide­o­log­i­cal and moral lessons.

Ac­cord­ing to the ed­u­ca­tional com­mis­sion, there are four kinds of schools in Shang­hai, pub­lic schools, pri­vate schools, Sino-for­eign co­op­er­a­tive schools, and schools for ex­pa­tri­ate stu­dents only.

The com­mis­sion em­pha­sized that poli­cies for in­ter­na­tional schools that re­cruit ex­pa­tri­ate stu­dents re­main un­changed. “Over­seas stu­dents can ap­ply for ex­pat schools, as well as pub­lic and pri­vate schools,” it said.

Pri­vate schools in the city have to fol­low mu­nic­i­pal reg­u­la­tions in their op­er­a­tion and re­cruit­ment pro­cesses. Schools can pro­vide con­sul­tancy for re­cruit­ment, but any ad­vanced form of re­cruit­ment is pro­hib­ited.

Some pri­vate schools used to start re­cruit­ing through pro­mo­tional cam­paigns, such as win­ter camps and school vis­its, as early as Fe­bru­ary. In May, when pub­lic schools be­gin re­cruit­ing, out­stand­ing stu­dents tend to have al­ready made their de­ci­sion about which school they will at­tend.

In China, for­eign in­sti­tu­tions can make ap­pli­ca­tions and work with lo­cal ed­u­ca­tional fa­cil­i­ties to open kinder­gartens and se­nior mid­dle schools, but they are not al­lowed to es­tab­lish pri­mary and ju­nior mid­dle schools, ac­cord­ing to the ed­u­ca­tional com­mis­sion.

Ac­cord­ing to China’s La­won Com­pul­sory Ed­u­ca­tion, the school cur­ricu­lum is and can only be de­cided by the ed­u­ca­tional ad­min­is­tra­tion un­der the State Coun­cil. All text­books at the com­pul­sory ed­u­ca­tional level have to be ex­am­ined and ap­proved by the ed­u­ca­tional ad­min­is­tra­tion.

All schools at the com­pul­sory ed­u­ca­tional level have to teach the cur­ricu­lum reg­u­lated by the State, cover the ba­sic con­tent of the na­tional cur­ricu­lum and meet the re­quire­ments of the na­tional cur­ricu­lum, Xin­min Evening News quoted an un­named source within the ed­u­ca­tion in­dus­try as say­ing.

The dom­i­nant role of the na­tional cur­ricu­lum should not be chal­lenged, the source said. “No con­tent or opin­ions against the dom­i­nant ide­ol­ogy should be tol­er­ated in the ed­u­ca­tional process.”

If bilin­gual cour­ses are given, the con­tent has to be a com­bi­na­tion of Chi­nese and Western cul­ture, ex­am­ined and ap­proved by ed­u­ca­tional ad­min­is­tra­tions.

It costs nearly 50,000 yuan ($7,400) a year to study at the Chi­nese depart­ment of Shande Ex­per­i­men­tal School, a pri­vate in­sti­tu­tion, said Karen Zhang, mother of a 13-year-old stu­dent. The cost of study­ing at the school’s in­ter­na­tional depart­ment is dou­ble, she said. Zhang has cho­sen to en­roll her son in the pri­vate school, be­cause “good pub­lic schools can’t be found nearmy neigh­bor­hood.”

A sur­vey re­leased by China Ed­u­ca­tion On­line showed that in Novem­ber last year more than 34,000Chi­nese un­der the age of 18 were study­ing in the United States — more than half of China’s over­seas stu­dent pop­u­la­tion — and the num­ber is grow­ing.

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