Press conference on China's achievements in education reform and development since the 18th CPC National Congress

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The Paper:

It has been more than a year since the "double reduction" policy was launched. What achievements have been made? How should we evaluate the results? Thank you.

Lyu Yugang:

This question has drawn widespread attention from all sectors of society over the past year or so. As one of the major decisions and arrangements made by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council, the "double reduction" policy has gained massive attention, understanding and support from society. The MOE has attached great importance to the implementation of the "double reduction" policy, regarding it as a top priority for the work of the ministry's Party leadership group and education supervision. We have refined the policies and measures, improved the working mechanism, and paid close attention to the implementation of the work. Overall, the "double reduction" work is progressing smoothly and has achieved phased results.

Everyone is aware that the implementation of "double reduction" involves the two parties of schools and off-campus. In terms of schools, the key is to focus on strengthening the main position of school education, training talents who can take on the responsibility of national rejuvenation, and achieving the "three improvements."

First, schools should improve the management of homework. Over the past year, the total quantity of school written homework and time spent doing it have been effectively controlled, and the quality of homework has been continuously improved. According to a third-party survey, since the implementation of the "double reduction" policy one year ago, 87.8% of students said they believe that the amount of homework has been significantly reduced, and more than 90% of the students were able to complete their homework within the specified time.

Second, schools should improve after-school services. After-school services have achieved full coverage. The content of after-school services has been gradually enriched and is increasingly attractive, which better meets the diverse learning needs of students. In a third-party survey, 90% of students said they participate in after-school services, which have always been voluntary, and 88.3% of the students said they enjoyed the services provided by the school.

Third, schools should improve classroom teaching. All parties from the national to the local levels, to schools, have paid more attention to education and teaching reform. The country has built a smart education platform for primary and secondary schools to expand the sharing of high-quality education resources. To date, there are 34,000 resources. Since the revision on March 1, the total number of visits has reached 8.8 billion, with a daily average of 46.35 million visits. It's fair to say that the platform has effectively served the implementation of the "double reduction" policy. All local schools and colleges have comprehensively introduced new curriculums and textbooks, actively promoted the country's excellent teaching achievements, and led the reform of education and teaching. Local governments have established basic teaching procedures, strengthened teacher training, enhanced support for teaching and research, accurately analyzed learning conditions, and focused on teaching students in accordance with their aptitude. The quality of classroom teaching has steadily improved. National monitoring of the quality of compulsory education shows that most primary and middle school students have a positive mental outlook, and more than 80% of the students' academic quality has reached the medium level or higher.

As we see, significant achievements have been made and the effects are apparent in reducing the off-campus tutoring burden on students. For example, the number of off-campus curriculum subject-tutoring institutions has decreased sharply, with 95.6% of offline and 87.1% of online establishments closing. Meanwhile, the price of off-campus training has decreased by an average of over 40%. Moreover, actions were taken to curb irregularities while enhancing the governance of non-academic training institutions.

The implementation of the "double reduction" policy has further promoted the changes in the education concept of principals, teachers and parents. Nowadays, schools are paying more attention to ensuring the well-rounded development of students in terms of moral grounding, intellectual and physical ability, aesthetic sensibility, and work skills. Meanwhile, parents are gradually developing a concept that puts "health first" in cultivating children by positively establishing a harmonious and close parent-child relationship.

Although the "double reduction" work has achieved initial success, we should be keenly aware that this work is an arduous and sophisticated project requiring more effort. Next, the MOE will earnestly implement the decisions of the CPC Central Committee, follow the overall thinking of consolidation, advancement and risk-control, focus on lightening burdens, strengthening quality, and increasing efficiency to gradually improve our "double reduction" work and promote the high-quality development of basic education.

Thank you.

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