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Anti-corruption Education Launched Among Kids

China has launched an anti-corruption education among kids aiming at fostering a noble-minded probity of its new generation.
"To help students bear anti-corruption in mind and fight against corruption, the new education program will take various forms of seminars, lectures, fieldwork, reading and online study,"said Xu Subin, deputy director with the Discipline Inspection Committee of Hangzhou, the capital city of east China's Zhejiang Province.
In Hangzhou, such education has already been carried out in all primary and elementary schools in a major urban district for a year, and is to be promoted to all schools beginning this September.
The Ministry of Education (MOE) has launched the campaign in some big cities and provinces like Beijing, Tianjin, Zhejiang, Hubei, Shaanxi, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, in the second half of this year.
The Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Youth League also issued a circular to kick off a nationwide drive of same kind two weeks ago.
Designers of the new lessons have focused on four major areas, including basic ethics, traditional Chinese virtue, ideals and belief, as well as legal education, according to Xu.
However, some challenge the idea of "vaccinating" the kids against corruption, saying it is just like "making children take pills for the adult's disease."
In a survey conducted in 2003 among more than 200 first-grade middle school students in Hangzhou, the students were asked "What is the major temptation around you." "Money" and "position promotion" ranked the two most popular answers, with many consider being a class monitor as "superior" and can "get the whip hand over other classmates."
"We hope anti-corruption education may improve youth's immunity against bad influences from the adult world and prevent them from growing up with the bud of corruption," said Ye Ming, head of the city's Discipline Inspection Committee, when explaining why Hangzhou has begun a trial education in eight schools as early as 2003.
At the beginning of this year, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC)issued an outline for the establishment of an anti-corruption work mechanism, saying that the anti-corruption education should be oriented towards "the whole Party" and "the whole society."
Senior leaders including Chinese President Hu Jintao and chief Party discipline inspector Wu Guanzheng have also raised specific requirements of this task in speeches and reports.
The All-China Women's Federation launched a program calling on all families to render a helping hand in the fight against corruption early this year. The new education program is, as well, the result of referring valuable experiences from other countries and regions in the world.
The United Nations Convention against Corruption stipulates that anti-corruption education should enter classrooms. Regions that excel in fighting corruption, such as Singapore and Hong
Kong, also believe such education should begin with kids.
"As China emphasizes more on prevention of corruption, anti-graft education is becoming indispensable for students of all levels", Xu said.

(Xinhua News Agency August 6, 2005)

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