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Qingyang District

1. General survey

Qingyang District, located in Chengdu City, Sichuan Province, is the political, economic and cultural center of Chengdu. Qingyang District occupies 66 km2 and in 2010 had a resident household population of 566,700. In terms of administrative divisions, Qingyang District includes 14 sub-district offices of which 11 are urban and 3 are suburban rural offices. The rural population amounts to 7.4% of the total figure, and the ration of urban to rural dwellers is 12:1.

In 2010, the gross domestic product (GDP) of Qingyang District reached 48.02 billion RMB and it had a per capita GDP of 60,492 RMB. Overseas Chinese have created the first domestic economic and technological development zone for Qingyang District, i.e. Chengdu Overseas Chinese Economic and Technological Development Zone. Modern service industries, cultural tourism and logistics play crucial roles in the District’s economic development, while in 2010 tertiary industry accounted for 77.56% of its total GDP.

Qingyang has a long history and rich cultural heritage. The Jinsha Ruins and Huanhua Stream nurture tranquility in Qingyang; the famous poets Simaxiangru and Dufu have enriched civilisation and inspired exploration; the famous educators Wenweng and Changhong have guided rationality and provoked in-depth thinking.

2. The status quo of education

Since Viscount Wenweng established the first college in this area 2000 years ago, Qingyang, which enjoys a privileged location and rich history, has maintained the tradition of respecting education: its system has nurtured thousands of talented individuals and is steeped in culture. It has many schools, many of which have distinct characteristics and are highly reputed.

Altogether there are 52 public schools. These include 35 primary schools, 12 secondary schools, 1 school covering Grades 1 to 91 vocational secondary school, 3 public kindergartens, 1 Community Education College and 10 direct reporting units. There are 57,592 students at school, with 10,435 migrant students accounting for 18.1% of total school enrolments. Furthermore, the District has 4,117 in-service teachers and workers, of which 721 (i.e. 17.5%) are senior members of staff. Over 3,458 teachers have a bachelors degree or above, accounting for 83.9% of the total. There are 335 provincial and municipal special-grade teachers and at least 10 headmasters have the title of national educational innovation headmaster and (or?) Chengdu special-grade headmaster.

3.  Educational reform and innovation

On 20 June 2009, the National Institute of Education Sciences (NIES) and Qingyang District Administration signed a co-operation agreement with a view to creating the Qingyang Experimental Area for Educational Comprehensive Reform. This initiative was backed by NIES. Based on in-depth investigation and careful consideration, NIES proposed that the strategic goal of Qingyang’s educational development should be the “integration of urban and rural development, and quality first”.

Through a combination of wise planning and administrative capacity, Qingyang District has adopted the philosophy of “proficient, sparking, strong—the first to achieve education modernisation", and accordingly developed "four strategies" and "nine projects" (Note: it is not clear why quotation marks are used here.); it also implemented a series of steps (or: an action plan) and supporting measures. The spectacular characteristic of the plan was to distill core values of modern education into the strategic idea of educational development, rationalising and identifying the key aspects of the modernisation of education.

Thanks to the concerted efforts of all stakeholders, Qingyang District has established the first Education Assessment Office in Sichuan province, through which it has achieved an initial "governance, operation and assessment" system for work in the field of education. The District held a new curriculum teaching competition, and paid considerable attention to quality and classrooms so as to improve teaching quality. It has also set up a "New Star-Teenager Club", by means of which students can participate extensively in PE, Science, Arts, and Life Skills. Furthermore, Qingyang District has reformed the traditional assessment system by rating teenagers according to a five-star system, which is constructive in building students' overall qualities. Qingyang district has developed a "district- street- family" system in community education, which has been deemed by experts of the Ministry of Education as community educational development “Qingyang mode”, and the District’s global lifelong education system has been solidly established.

In 2008, Qingyang District was awarded the title of “National Demonstrating District of Community Education” by the Ministry of Education and “Advanced District of Sichuan Provinces” by the Sichuan provincial government. In 2010, the Ministry of Education named the District “Educational Experimental Area for National Parents' Schools”; in 2011, "the 4th national education science research award" was conferred on Qingyang.

4. Educational internationalisation

Qingyang District has established partnerships with its counterparts in 28 foreign countries and areas, including Australia, Canada, Germany, Japan, Russia, South Korea, the US and the UK. It has held several major international events, such as the China Sichuan-Singapore Principal’s Forum, UK-China Climate4Classrooms International Forum, the Amity International Seminar on Autism, Responsibility, Innovation and Cooperation, and the (please check if this is right – I am not sure if these are 2 separate events) Forum on Quality Education in the context of globalisation. Currently, 18 important international programmes are underway in the District, including the UK-China Climate4Classrooms Program, Intel Innovation Education Program and the GLOBAL CAUSE Program.

Qingyang District has made internationalisation an indispensible dimension of its educational modernisation, and energetically pushed forward the educational internationalisation programme to district-wide schools. In the future, Qingyang district will build more comprehensive and intensive partnerships with foreign countries and areas so as to reinforce the internalisation programme.

 

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