A press conference held by the Ministry of Education on March 26 announced that 2，717 counties in China had achieved balanced development in compulsory education, accounting for 92.7% of counties in China or 90.5% of counties in central and western China.
During the press conference an annual assessment report of China’s compulsory education for the year of 2018 was also presented, revealing that 338 counties and 16 provinces in China had succeeded in passing their assessments.
According to the report, since 2015 these counties had newly built 1,598 schools, expanded nearly 40,000 schools and created 3.68 million new school places with a total investment of 254.4 billion RMB. 220,000 new teachers were employed, and among them 40,000 were teaching music, art, PE, science and information technology.
The report also underscored that effort had been invested into ensuring underprivileged students have equitable access to education. Measures implemented to achieve this goal included promoting nutrition programs for rural students, ensuring migrant workers’ children receive compulsory education in cities where their parents worked, providing greater care to left-behind children, increasing financial aid for students from poor families, and improving the quality of special education.
An official from the Education Supervision Committee under the State Council said that 2019 was a critical year to achieve balanced development in China’s compulsory education. In the next two years, the Committee was planning to take measures to help more counties to achieve balanced development in compulsory education. For the counties which had already achieved balanced development, efforts would be made to further improve the quality of the education being offered.