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Private educational institutions require new policies

By Ma Wenying (
Updated: 2013-03-07 15:33

Private educational institutions are reaching a new level of development, which requires a revised set of government policies and rules, national political advisers said.

There are over 2,300 colleges and universities around China, and nearly one-third of them are private educational institutions, Yang Wen, a member of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference and the chairwoman of Shandong Yingcai College board of directors, said in an interview with China Daily.

Private educational institutions require new policies

"Since the Law of the People's Republic of China on the Promotion of Privately-run Schools took effect in 2003, great changes have taken place in the sector and many articles in the law are no longer compatible with the current situation, some are even hindering the development of private educational institutions," Yang said.

One of her proposals at this year's CPPCC session was revising that law and clearly defining the nature of private educational institutions, while at the same time making explicit statements about government financial support for these institutions.

"Take article 44 of the current promotion law as an example", Yang said. "It stipulates that 'governments at or above the county level may set up special funds for financing the development of privately-run schools and for rewarding and commending the collectives and individuals that have made outstanding contributions', the wording in this article is not strong enough, and thus local governments do not feel obliged to provide financial support for these institutions."

The developing model of private educational institutions has changed from big-scale expansion to a focus on quality in the past decade.

While public educational institutions are focusing more on academic development, private educational institutions are mainly working on developing students' practical competences.

In order to get their students better prepared for the job market, Ren Fang, a CPPCC National Committee member and executive president of Xijing University, will submit a proposal to set up a platform where local governments can coordinate cooperation projects between educational institutions and companies.

"Our current model of students' development is disjointed from enterprises' recruitment needs", Ren said. "Many students grow up in an exam-oriented education system and have little idea about future career plans."

If companies are encouraged to set up internship training bases for colleges and universities, students will have a better vision of what they are learning and what they want to learn, Ren added.

The Law of the People's Republic of China on the Promotion of Privately-run Schools stipulates that privately run schools and government-run schools should have equal legal status, but the latter are always in an advantageous position whenever there is a new preferential policy, Ren said.

"I hope that all the private educational institutions can have equal access to government policies in the future", she added.


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