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4 Reasons Why Education is Still an Important Factor among Chinese Citizens

By Juwai, 18 June 2021
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China’s education industry is the largest education system globally and is an essential component of its tertiary sector. As of 2020, 10.71 million Chinese students took the National Higher Education Entrance Examination as an investment in education accounts for about 4% of total GDP in China. 

Let's dive into why education is an important factor in a Chinese household.


1. It is based on years of tradition.

Traditionally, the people of China have looked highly upon the role of education in development. A tradition strengthened by introducing the One-Child policy in the late 1970s, parents have huge expectations for their children and are willing to sacrifice everything to provide their child with the best opportunities for their success in education. 

A family’s spending will centre a sizable amount on educational expenses -  at least ⅓ of their household income. Furthermore, after-school activities such as music lessons, maths, dancing, and English lessons also represent the increasing proportion of family education expenditure.


2. A reflection of the government’s policy.

At the beginning of the period of economic reform, Deng Xiaoping viewed education as the foundation for the ‘Four Modernisations’: 

  • modern agriculture
  • industry 
  • national defence
  • science and technology

In 1983 he proposed ‘Three Orientations’ for the Chinese education system, a sense where education must adapt to modernisation, the world, and the future. In the same year, the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party and the State Council introduced the Outline of Education Reform and Development in China to ensure a strong nation relies on its education and the teachers responsible for upholding it. 

In 1997, the 15th National Congress of the Communist Party decided that the national development strategy would be based on science and education.

3. The key to China’s economy

According to the National Statistics Bureau of China, the Chinese government has increased its education level since 2006. Recently the Ministry of Education enacted the Outline of China’s National Plan for Medium and Long-term Education Reform and Development (2010-2020), which aims to transform China into a leading knowledge- and technology-based country.

With more radical educational reforms conducted following the launch of the Outline of China’s National Plan for Medium and Long-term Education Reform and Development, this development of the education system has allowed more professionals and skilled workers to meet the needs of the changing economy. 

With the supply of this educated workforce helping boost the country’s growth, education in China is not only big business for public and private investors - it is the key to China’s economic dynamism.