Students discuss making posters on being thrifty and recycling during an extracurricular activity in Qingdao, Shandong province, on Thursday, as World Thrift Day nears. [Photo by WANG HAIBIN/FOR CHINA DAILY]
China will not slow its efforts to regulate academic tutoring and will impose heavy fines on tutoring institutions that violate the rules, Minister of Education Huai Jinpeng said on Friday.
The whitelist and blacklist mechanism for tutoring institutions will be improved, and more attention will be given to regulating disguised academic tutoring, he said in a report delivered at a session of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, China's top legislature.
The government will also improve the monitoring and warning system for tutoring institutions with financial problems to prevent possible bankruptcy, he said.
The guideline for administrative punishment of after-school tutoring institutions will be published and the ministry will push for legislation on after-school tutoring management and regulation, he said.
Moreover, the high school entrance exam and national college entrance exam will put more emphasis on building students' comprehensive abilities to guide society to form more scientific views, Huai said.
He noted that significant results have been achieved since the "double reduction" policy was introduced in July 2021 to ease the burden of excessive homework and off-campus tutoring on young students.
The number of on-site academic tutoring institutions for primary and middle school students has been slashed by 96 percent from 124,000 to around 5,000, while online ones dropped from 263 to 34, he said.
Meanwhile, 88 percent of students said their amount of homework has reduced considerably, and more than 92 percent of students participated in after-school services provided by schools during weekdays, Huai said.
"Teachers have paid more attention to students' all-around development while parents also care more about the healthy growth of their children physically and mentally and no longer blindly sign them up for too many tutoring courses," he said.
However, the regulation on tutoring institutions remains complicated and there are many shortcomings, Huai said.
Some academic tutoring companies pose as housekeeping companies and others offer one-on-one tutoring to students at hotels and coffee shops, while some parents have hired tutors to live in their homes, making it difficult for authorities to hold them accountable, he said.
Moreover, the capital that has been withdrawn from academic tutoring companies has flown into nonacademic tutoring institutions, which requires further guidance and regulation to prevent an excessive drive for profit, Huai said.
Some local governments still pay too much attention to enrollment rates at good universities and society pays too much attention to academic background, he said.
Therefore, some parents still believe they might put their children at a disadvantage if they reduce their academic workload if others don't do the same, he said, adding that there is still a long way to go to change such concepts about education.
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