China plans to cultivate about 10,000 students training to be teachers annually to work in under-developed counties in central and western regions starting this year, a new notice said on Tuesday.
The notice, jointly issued by the Ministry of Education and eight other government departments, said the six normal universities, which specialize in teacher training, under the ministry's administration and high-level normal universities under provincial government administration will be responsible for enrolling the students. The new policy aims to "fundamentally improve" the quality of primary and secondary school teachers in the less-developed areas, it said.
The students are exempt from paying tuition and accommodation fees and will receive subsidies for living expenses, the notice said, adding they do not need to take the necessary tests to get teaching credentials.
They are required to sign a contract to teach for at least six years at schools in under-developed areas and if they breach the contract, it will be included in the social credit system, it said.