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China Wants to Crack Down on Homework
August 28, 2013

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The Chinese Government is going ahead with a crackdown of a different kind. This one is on the amount of homework that Chinese students get assigned, by their teachers and by their parents.

The first step recently was the Ministry of Education's announcement that schools could not assign homework to first- and second-graders on their summer vacation. Now, the Ministry wants to widen the scope of that homework ban, bringing it into mainstream school time and expanding the age of the students affected.

In particular, schools will be strongly discouraged from instructing students to complete written work at home. Instead, teachers will take their students to museums and libraries and on literal field trips to farms, broadening their learning styles away from the rote learning and homework-heavy patterns that are so familiar to generations of Chinese students and parents.

Yes, the parents. Many Chinese parents, it turns out, assign their own homework, encouraging their children to learn even more with even more after-school assignments that supplement the school learning. Presumably, that sort of activity will also be discouraged.

It's all part of a draft regulation issued by the Ministry of Education, which promises to gauge public opinion before making a final decision.




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