China issues guidelines to ease burden on young students
Updated: July 24, 2021 21:34 Xinhua

BEIJING — Chinese authorities have introduced a set of guidelines to ease the burden of excessive homework and off-campus tutoring for students undergoing compulsory education.

China's nine-year free compulsory education system covers primary school and junior middle school.

Jointly issued by the General Office of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the General Office of the State Council, the document specifies guiding principles and targets of the initiative.

It details requirements in areas including reducing homework and improving quality of education and after-class services provided by schools.

It also pledges to adopt a strict approval and supervision system for off-campus tutoring programs featuring curriculum subjects such as math and physics.

The following are some highlights of the document:

— Students who can't finish their written homework after hard work shall go to bed on time.

— Education authorities shall improve free online learning services.

— Local governments shall stop approving establishment of new off-campus curriculum subject-tutoring institutions for students in compulsory education, and existing institutions shall be registered as non-profit institutions.

— Curriculum subject-tutoring institutions are not allowed to go public for financing; listed companies should not invest in the institutions, and foreign capital is barred from such institutions.

— Off-campus tutoring shall include no overseas education courses and their courses shall not be taught on national festivals and holidays.

— Online tutoring should pay attention to protecting students' eyesight. Each class hour should not exceed 30 minutes, the course interval should not be less than 10 minutes, and the tutoring shall end no later than 9:00 pm.

— Mainstream media, new media, billboards in public places and residential areas and online platforms shall not publish or broadcast off-campus tutoring advertisements.

— Beijing, Shanghai, Shenyang, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Zhengzhou, Changzhi, Weihai and Nantong are selected as national pilot cities to implement the guidelines.

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