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September 3, 2012

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Home » Metro » Education

100 new preschools open today but need barely met

NEARLY 100 new kindergartens are opening as the fall term starts today to meet the growing demand for preschool care.

The number of local kindergarten students doubled between 2005 and 2011 to about 444,000 and is forecast to reach 500,000 this year, the Shanghai Education Commission said yesterday.

The rapid growth of preschoolers is caused by the baby boom and the increasing migrant population, the commission said.

Shanghai has seen more than 160,000 newborn babies every year since 2007 and the newborn population is expected to remain above 180,000 in the next few years, according to the Shanghai Population and Family Planning Commission.

To meet the growing needs, the existing kindergartens have managed to offer 300-plus additional classes this term for the increasing number of preschoolers.

But it's far from enough. So the commission erected 52 new public kindergartens and added 45 private kindergartens. Also, another 40 kindergartens have been constructed and are being finished now.

Most of the new kindergartens are erected on the city's outskirts, where lots of large-scale new communities have been built in recent years.

More than 70 percent of students are studying in suburban kindergartens and elementary and secondary schools, according to the commission.

The commission will open 56 public schools and kindergartens in the suburban area this term.

The new facilities on the outskirts can accommodate about 10,000 kindergarten students, 10,000 primary school students, 7,000 middle school students and 3,500 high school students, the commission said.

Colleges welcome students

Local colleges and universities also welcomed newcomers over the weekend.

Tongji University set up barrier tape at their registration area to keep parents away so they wouldn't hover around the freshmen, who already are adults.

Shanghai Normal University set up banners, encouraging parents to train their children to be independent.

Fudan University started to offer longer beds to tall students this year as university freshmen seem to be taller than their predecessors, officials said. The university plans to equip every dorm with a 2-meter-long bed in the future, compared with the current 1.9-meter-long beds.


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