Beijing Shutting Schools for Children of Migrant Workers

September 27, 2006 at 4:05 am (China, Education)

To polish its image before the Olympics, Beijing is shutting schools for children of migrant workers (reports from the Wall Street Journal and Reuters). If holding a sports game is just a face-glossing, the game will end up as another suffering to the mass. How can one cure a disease by simply hiding it?

The authority claimed those schools unregistered, and said there are over 90,000 children. Students will be absorbed into state schools and registered private schools, which are too expensive for migrant workers to afford. So you will see more migrant workers’ children, who are already severely marginalized, drop out.

At the same time, the good news is that Beijing also announced to set aside 80 million yuan to improve teaching facilities in schools for the children of migrant workers. I am wondering where the money will go after those schools are eliminated. It’s not news that many government fiscal allocations end up in the pockets of a few corrupt officials.

There are 239 unregistered schools, the city said. Rather than close them, can the city just register them, refurbish them with more facilities and teachers? Why make migrant workers suffer high tuition and make children drop out?

Registered or unregistered, it’s just a piece of paper, an excuse for government intervention when necessary.

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