China plans to accelerate the development of education in regions inhabited by ethnic groups to ensure equal public education services around the country - and to help boost regional economic and social development.
According to a statement released by the State Council on Aug 17, the overall development level of education in these regions is expected to reach or get closer to the national average level by 2020.
Schools that provide compulsory education should also be equipped with facilities equal to those in other regions, and efforts will be made to reduce the school dropout rate and thus realize balanced development.
The statement also outlined the specific tasks required to meet these goals:
- To improve the development of education at all levels.
The State Council requested efforts to accelerate the popularization of pre-school education, improve the quality of education in regular high schools, and speed up the development of secondary vocational education. Enterprises are encouraged to set up vocational schools in ethnic regions.
- To strengthen ethnic talent training.
The scale of personnel training will be expanded in an orderly manner and a group of ethnic talents with academic credentials and “global influence” will be cultivated. The enrollment system will also be reformed to establish a fair and diversified admission mechanism for ethnic candidates.
- To focus on enhancing the “weak links” of education in ethnic regions.
Efforts will be made to develop boarding schools and support the development of education in border areas by increasing financial input. Bilingual education will also be promoted while the rights of ethnic students to receive education in their own language will continue to be respected.
Additionally, a long-term mechanism concerning faculty training will be set up to cultivate bilingual teachers and teachers offering lessons in the fields of science, music, physical education and arts. The faculty training system will be further improved with preference offered to teachers in rural ethnic areas and those teaching ethnic students in inland universities.
Government authorities at all levels are required to increase input in ethnic education, promote equal distribution of public education services in ethnic regions, and offer more support to students residing in ethnic regions.