Home / Education / News Tools: Save | Print | E-mail | Most Read
English Classes Cut to Ease Burden on Students
Adjust font size:

Primary schools in Shanghai will offer fewer English classes in the upcoming fall semester, and the education commission will also scrap an English test to ease the burden on students.

From this September, pupils in the first and second years will take only two English classes a week, down from three previously, the Shanghai Education Commission announced yesterday.

Students will also only have to study three items in each unit of their English textbooks instead of five or six.

Young pupils need only listen to and speak basic English, so no reading and writing skills are needed, commission officials said.

"We are making big changes in course content and arrangements in the hope of reducing children's heavy study burden substantially," said Yin Houqing, vice commission director who oversees the city's elementary education.

He added children will also be required to master fewer Chinese characters as well as having hard math tasks postponed.

Children starting primary school will receive two to four weeks of orientation at the beginning of their first semester, a new policy that aims to help young students better adjust to the new environment, the commission said.

The school day will also begin 30 minutes later from this semester, after a successful trial in four districts from February.

"All the new policies were designed to save students from overburdening academic tasks and promote their healthy development," Yin added.

Heavy study schedules for young students have become a hot topic among parents and education authorities in recent years. The commission has reduced academic requirements and homework, but this has had limited effects because schools have launched substitute texts.

For example, in March the commission canceled the English Proficiency Test for primary and secondary students. But institutes substituted their own tests. Yesterday the education authority ordered a popular English training center to scrap an English ability test, which was scheduled to kick off in October.

(Shanghai Daily August 23, 2007)

Tools: Save | Print | E-mail | Most Read

Related Stories
Experts: More Respect for Children's Rights and Positions
SiteMap | About Us | RSS | Newsletter | Feedback

Copyright © China.org.cn. All Rights Reserved E-mail: webmaster@china.org.cn Tel: 86-10-88828000 京ICP证 040089号