BEIJING, Sept. 10 (Xinhua) -- Pre-school and nine-year compulsory education coverage in China is on par with that in high-income countries, according to a press conference Friday.
As a result of the development in the past decade, the coverage of China's education at various stages has either reached or surpassed the average level of middle and high-income countries in the world, said the conference by the Publicity Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee.
China has 530,000 schools of various stages and categories, with 290 million students currently receiving education, said Minister of Education Huai Jinpeng.
The gross enrollment ratio for pre-school education rose to 88.1 percent, up 23.6 percent over the past decade. Following its full coverage nationwide, the retention rate of nine-year compulsory education reached 95.4 percent, Huai said.
The gross enrollment ratios for senior secondary education and higher education climbed to 91.4 percent and 57.8 percent, respectively. The average schooling years of the working-age population reached 10.9 years, said Huai.
China has made solid efforts to ensure zero dropouts in the compulsory education stage. It achieved new progress in promoting balanced and integrated development of compulsory education in urban and rural areas, Huai said.
The country's financial aid system for students has covered all educational stages, benefiting nearly 1.3 billion recipients over the past 10 years, noted the conference.