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Physical education becomes major subject in Yunnan middle schools

China Daily | Updated: 2020-01-15 08:53
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KUNMING-The newly released reforms of the high school entrance exams in Southwest China's Yunnan province has caused heated discussions after the total score allocated to physical education was raised from 50 points to 100 points, equal to the so-called "three major subjects" of Chinese, mathematics and English.

The reforms will be implemented from the fall semester of 2020. Students will take PE tests once a year during their three-year middle school education, and the proportion of each year's test has been tentatively set to 20 percent, 40 percent and 40 percent.

The exams include two parts: a physical examination and a skill test. The former, accounting for 60 points, will be conducted according to the national standards of students' physical health while the latter, accounting for 40 points, will be a test of sports skills.

Xu Zhongxiang, an official with the Yunnan Provincial Department of Education, says: "The Ministry of Education requires students to master at least one or two sports skills. Students can choose from various sports for the skill test, including soccer, basketball, volleyball, table tennis, badminton, tennis, track and field, swimming, martial arts, boxing or aerobics."

Detailed rules, plans and related documents are still under discussion and will be released soon.

Zhang Chunhua, deputy director of Yunnan Provincial Department of Education, explains the purpose of the reform as boosting students' well-rounded development and alleviating their study pressure.

Xu says: "Middle school is a critical period for the development of students' physical and mental health. Regular exercise is needed to promote students' health."

Wang Dengfeng, a senior official with the Ministry of Education, says: "We hope that after several years of hard work, physical education can truly become a major subject."



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