Migrant schools are set to disappear in Shanghai by 2010, the
Shanghai Education Commission announced yesterday.
The 240-plus existing migrant schools in the city will either be
turned into private schools managed and funded by the city
government or will close, with the pupils transferred to local
"We appreciate migrant schools for their historic contribution
to the city's education system. But now it's time to take
measures," said Yin Houqing, the vice commission director.
With the country's market economy development, tens of thousands
of rural people left their farmlands for construction projects in
the city during the 1990s.
By last September, the city was home to 379,980 migrant children
aged between six and 15. However, urban education resources in the
1990s could not accommodate such large numbers of students and this
led to the formation of hundreds of independent migrant
Most were run by non-Shanghai natives or business people at the
lowest possible cost. They were unlicensed.
"Without a legal identity and government funding, tight budgets
forced many of the migrant schools to have poor education
facilities, unsatisfactory sanitary conditions and a lack of good
teachers," Yin said.
From 2004, the city government allocated 30 million yuan
(US$4.14 million) every year to improve migrant schools.
At present, 57 percent of the migrant children are studying in
The commission said it would build more public schools in the
hope of raising the percentage to 70 percent by 2010. They are also
funding private schools so they can offer equal opportunities to
the other 30 percent.
(Shanghai Daily January 22, 2008)