Rural education anniversary celebrated

By Li Lei | China Daily | Updated: 2020-07-24 09:27
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A girl answers a question in class at the school. [Photo/Xinhua]

In 2007, the central government implemented the Free Normal Education Program at six top teaching colleges to tackle a shortage of competent tutors in rural areas.

Those admitted to the program are exempt from tuition fees and receive a monthly allowance of 600 yuan while on campus. In return, they spend a specified period working in areas where there is a shortage of teachers.

In 2010, the National Training Program for Primary and Secondary School Teachers was implemented jointly by the ministries of education and finance.

The program offered village teachers in Central and West China free refresher courses or the chance to attend short-term training sessions at leading universities at the government's expense.

The national anti-poverty drive launched eight years ago made access to compulsory education a basic requirement for removing poverty, prompting local authorities to step up efforts to reduce rural student dropout rates.

Last year, Guizhou province-home to several of the country's poorest areas-saw a significant decline in compulsory education dropout rates.

Figures from the provincial government show the number of dropouts fell to just 52 across Guizhou by the end of last year, compared with more than 10,000 at the start of that year.

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