Shanghai issues rules to regulate private training organizations

All private training organizations will be banned from organizing academic competitions among primary school students.

All private training organizations will be banned from organizing academic competitions among primary school students, according to the latest regulations released in Shanghai on Friday, which will come into effect on January 1.

The regulations were introduced jointly by various government departments as training organizations have long been criticized for various problems, such as organizing classes which are too advanced for students, bringing heavy burden and claiming to make sure that trainees be enrolled into popular schools.

For example, some math competitions were so popular that tens of thousands of primary and middle school students sat them and spent massive amounts of time in cram schools.

Some of the competitions were actually organized by the organizations, that hyped that such competition awards could give children an advantage when applying for popular schools.

The regulations also ban private training organizations to connect their training service with the competitions they organize. They are also banned from sending competition results to local schools, disturbing normal admission orders.

Neither will they be allowed to connect students awards with school admission results in promotion materials and activities.

The regulations reaffirm that all primary and middle schools, those in the phase of China’s 9-year compulsory education, are prohibited from taking certificates of competitions of English, math and other courses as references in student enrollment. 

The regulations also include establishment standards for private training organizations and related management measures.

One of the standards laid out strictest requirement on qualification of teachers. All the full-time and part-time teachers have to possess teaching or related professional qualifications. 

The organizations are also required to have full-time headmaster or administrative head, who should be younger than 70 and have at least five years’ educational administration experience with good performance.

They also need to have full-time teaching administrators who have college education and have worked in the related area for at least three years. At least 25 percent of the teachers need to be full-time.

The teaching content at training organizations should be organized based on curriculum criterion set for different study phases and abide by rules of education and children’s healthy growth.

Organizations are “strictly banned” from teaching advanced class.

Training should not hinder normal rest for children and all classes should end before 8:30pm.

The organizations are also required to use textbooks or teaching materials matching its training plans and all the materials need to be registered with authorities. They also need to make written commitments that all their teaching materials are legal and they are willing to accept inspection by authorities.

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