What is a Party school supposed to be? What are government and Party officials supposed to learn at such a place?
A Party school should be a place where ranking officials are taught how to better perform their duties and serve the people. Such principles should be self-evident to anyone who is selected to receive training there.
But some local Party schools have been contaminated in recent years by bad tendencies. An editorial published in People's Forum, an affiliate of the People's Daily, criticized the situation by saying the schools had been transformed into venues for establishing personal connections and greasing channels for promotions.
At some Party schools, ranking officials invite each other to banquets that are paid for by the units for which they work. In extreme cases, such banquets are prearranged on a rotating basis so that every "student" has the chance to host and to be hosted.
Lower-ranking officials are supposed to be trained in higher-level Party schools. This has given some lower-level officials a chance to curry favor with more senior officials to help them gain promotions. A deputy county magistrate is said to have spent thousands of yuan greasing all possible links to secure a promotion during his training at a Party school.
During war times, the Party school in Yan'an trained a large number of dedicated Party members, whose devotion to the cause of the Communist Party of China (CPC) contributed to the founding of New China in 1949.
Such schools, no matter at what level, are supposed to carry on the traditions forged in Yan'an and to firmly embed the principle of serving the people in the minds of all who are trained here.
This mission is meaningful to both the Party and country since the CPC, as the party in power, has made it its highest virtue to represent and serve the interests of the people.
Those who are trained at Party schools at different levels are supposed to express this creed in their work. Their performance should make this creed concrete to ordinary citizens.
Some officials have arranged for ghostwriters to write dissertations for them when they are at Party school.
These bad examples should highlight the need to tighten discipline for any ranking officials receiving training at Party schools at any level.
Securing Party schools as a training ground for moral, competent officials is key to the future of both the Party and the country.
(China Daily 07/16/2007 page4)