Hu Wei: differentiated management for sound development of private schools

Source: Guangming Daily

Over the past five years, remarkable results have been achieved in the regulation and promotion of private schools:

First, major progress was made in the development of regulations governing the operation of non-public education. A series of amendments to the Law on the Promotion of Non-Public Schools and related policies introduced since 2016 classified private schools into two categories, non-profit and for-profit, and laid out requirements accordingly. Non-profit private schools are required to serve the public good rather than to generate a profit, and are thus entitled to the same rights and benefits as public schools. On the other hand, private schools choosing for-profit status for its provision of non-compulsory education can distribute earnings to their owners.

Second, quality-oriented development became a growing new trend. More and more private education providers shifted their strategic focus from scale expansion to the pursuit of quality and distinctiveness, realizing that only by providing unique and excellent education can allow them to gain and maintain the upper hand over their competitors. 

Third, regulation of the private education sector had been enhanced. The tendency of excessive pursuit of profit among private kindergartens was reversed by stressing the importance of public access to preschool education for all, resulting in the ensured affordability of childcare and preschool education fees. Measures were taken to ensure private and public schools launch their admission procedures simultaneously to facilitate education equity. In addition, the mushrooming of unqualified tutoring service providers had also been curbed through years of coherent and coordinated efforts. In general, better regulation with strengthened accreditation and internal control mechanisms facilitated sound and sustainable development of the non-public education sector.