Givology Staff's Blog

Learn More About the Education System in China!

Learn More About the Education System in China!
How does it compare to school in the United States?
Education Duration
From the ages of 6 to 15, education is mandatory and free for all Chinese citizens. After middle school, parents must pay for their children to continue their education. Due to this fact, many children in the rural areas of China often drop out at this point, while wealthy city families are able to put their children through more schooling. Additionally, wealthy families also have the option of private schools in China and ones found internationally.
Education Methods and Quality
In China, there is a heavy emphasis on the studies of science, math, and technology. According to UNICEF, China has a 99% primary school enrollment rate, as well as 99% youth literacy rate. Throughout middle and high school, students face rigorous test preparation for an entrance exam called the gaokao for admission to colleges. Colleges and universities admit students strictly on their performance on this test, and is a difficult comprehensive exam that covers information from all topics learned throughout high school. It is a highly selective test, used as a tool for intellectual elimination.
Education Gap
Even with the 99% primary school enrollment rate, there is a huge disparity in educational opportunities between students in rural and urban areas of China. While many urban disciples enjoy well-educated teachers and pristine facilities, rural students meet in run-down buildings with sub-par teachers, struggling to understand basic concepts of chemistry and math. Socioeconomic differences also affect admissions into the most elite universities. Wealthy families are able to pay for a higher quality of education, and send their children to school where colleges have higher admissions rates allocated to top-tier cities, such as Beijing. This makes it hard for poorer children of lower socioeconomic statuses to compete for those limited spots. The percentage of students at Peking University from rural origins, for example, has fallen to about 10 percent in the past decade. In addition, only about 40% of rural students even attend high school because of the cost.
As millions of people move from rural to urban areas in search of higher paying work, the children that come with their parents to the city face a multitude of struggles as well. The passport system of Hukou limits access to urban schools for these kids. Complicated and corrupt urban registration systems further compound the issue for rural families. Many parents are left with no choice but to send their children back to rural hometowns for inferior schooling.
Options for Foreigners
Non-Chinese citizens have a few options to go to school in China. With the proper documentation, such as a passport, birth certificate, admissions applications, and visa information, most children are able to go to primary and secondary schools in China. Language proficiency is extremely important, not only in primary and secondary schools, but also for foreigners to be admitted into universities in China. One perk for foreigners is that they are exempt from the intensive gaokao test.
Peach is a partner of Givology that helps children in the poorest parts of China obtain opportunities to finish a college education. Learn more at [url=][/url].
“China's Education Gap - A Surprising Factor of Rural Poverty.” Project Partner, 29 Nov. 2016,
Gao, Helen. “Opinion | China's Education Gap.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 4 Sept. 2014,
Mack, Lauren. “What Is School in China Like.” ThoughtCo,
“Statistics.” UNICEF, 24 Dec. 2013, [url=][/url].


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