Summer holiday. What’s better than the summer holiday?
Beijing summers are no different than those in the US in that it’s hot and plenty of students are preparing for college (including our intern Steph!).
Vacations aside, this past July we’ve witnessed again the profound changes Chinese families are willing to make for the best education. While the US remains the most popular destination for Chinese who want bachelor, master’s and PhD degrees, students are facing new barriers for enrolling domestically and abroad.
In Beijing, Nanjing and other major cities, laws are being skirted to increase the likelihood of attending top elementary schools. Beijingers are purchasing second homes near top kindergartens, while in Nanjing, divorce rates have skyrocketed to get around regulations that limit the number of properties couples can own. Besides purchasing property, parents continue to go overboard with “kindergarten linkage classes,” which are still jam packed in Shanghai. You can learn more about those in a May blog post.
It seems anything is possible when preparing for increasingly expensive US universities, including potentially moving to Ohio, where one Chinese businessman wants to bring more Chinese students to local prep schools. It’s no wonder many in the US are open to helping and welcoming Chinese students as they contributed $4.4 billion to the US economy last year.
However, this past month has also shown cooling enthusiasm for studying abroad due to the Asiana crash in San Francisco. Chinese middle-school and high-school students and teachers, 70 in total, were on their way to improve their English at summer camps in Southern California, a popular destination for such camps. When the plane crashed, two Chinese students perished at the scene with another passing away a few days later. Our hearts and prayers go out to the families and friends of these three students.
English camps are popular with Chinese parents hoping to send their child to the US for high school or college; these camps are a way to “dip a toe in” to see if their children would succeed in the US. Future enrollment in these programs may slow as Beijing and the Shanxi and Zhejiang provinces have all temporarily restricted or suspended for-profit overseas study tours which feed the language camps.
Here in China, the crash has garnered attention not just for the tragedy but also for the high prices these study tours fetch. These camps are not the only kinds of educational tourism that parents can invest in. Whether it’s connecting the youth of the Mississippi and Yangtze River areas or via organizations like The US-China Youth Leadership Exchange, the varied cultural exchange has become a major part of internationalized education.
That’s July! If you are chomping at the bit to learn more about China Ed and don’t want to wait until next month, consider following us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, or the Vericant blog.
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