By CCTV correspondent Natalie Poyhonen
In this episode of the Growing Up in China series we look at the educational challenges for migrant workers’ children.
Each year, millions of them join their parents as they head for work outside of their home provinces. But accessing the same schooling opportunities as their urban counterparts can prove difficult.
|Each year, millions of migrant workers’ children join their parents as they head for work
outside of their home provinces. But accessing the same schooling opportunities as their urban
counterparts can prove difficult.
This is geography class at the Dandelion school in Beijing. It could be any classroom in China.
But the pupils here have had their own lessons in traveling around the country – they’re all children of migrant workers.
“They are very mature in a way. They have been moving around with their parents on the road for so many years so they have experienced a lot of ups and downs.” Zheng Hong, principal of Dandelion School, said.
When students first start at this school only about 10 per cent of them reach the passing rate for their grade, but after three years of dedicated teaching and learning about 90 per cent will qualify for high school.
Eleven year old Wu Bingyan is aiming to join those ranks.
“I want to be a translator because I think English is easy to learn.” Wu said.
Her mother was a teacher in Henan and is now a factory worker. She wants her daughter to continue her studies in the capital.
“I hope there are better policies so that migrants can live here, study and work here. I want her to continue studying in Beijing.” Wu’s mother Wang Guihua said.
There’s one more hurdle for these children, if they want to go onto higher education they’ll have to leave this community and possibly their family to return to their home province to sit the university entrance exam. Just one more journey for these migrant children.
Educators want that to change.
“Don’t let the household registration system stop students from studying in the cities they’re in. This overall is actually better for the students, better for the families and better for the whole society.” Zheng Hong, principal of Dandelion School, said.
An outcome which could allow these children to pursue their academic dreams with one less journey.