(Adopted at the Fourth Session of the Sixth National People's
Congress April 12, 1986 and promulgated by Order No. 38 of the
President of the People's Republic of China on April 12, 1986)
Article 1 This Law is formulated, in accordance with the
Constitution and the actual conditions in China, for the purpose of
promoting elementary education and the building of a socialist
society that is advanced culturally and ideologically as well as
Article 2 The State shall institute a system of nine-year
compulsory education. The authorities of provinces, autonomous
regions, and municipalities directly under the Central Government
shall decide on measures to promote compulsory education, in
accordance with the degree of economic and cultural development in
their own localities.
Article 3 In compulsory education, the State policy on education
must be implemented to improve the quality of instruction and
enable children and adolescents to achieve all-round development --
morally, intellectually and physically -- so as to lay the
foundation for improving the qualities of the entire nation and for
cultivating well-educated and self-disciplined builders of
socialism with high ideals and moral integrity.
Article 4 The State, the community, schools and families shall,
in accordance with law, safeguard the right to compulsory education
of school-age children and adolescents.
Article 5 All children who have reached the age of six shall
enroll in school and receive compulsory education for the
prescribed number of years, regardless of sex, nationality or race.
In areas where that is not possible, the beginning of schooling may
be postponed to the age of seven.
Article 6 Schools shall promote the use of Putonghua (common
speech based on Beijing pronunciation), which is in common use
throughout the nation.
Schools in which the majority of students are of minority
nationalities may use the spoken and written languages of those
nationalities in instruction.
Article 7 Compulsory education shall be divided into two stages:
primary school education and junior middle school education. Once
primary education has been made universal, junior middle school
education shall follow. The department in charge of education under
the State Council shall decide on the duration of each stage.