Education cooperation helps bridge gap in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region

Updated: Feb 27, 2024 Xinhua Print
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SHIJIAZHUANG -- During the winter vacation, students at an elementary school in Xiong'an New Area, about 100 km southwest of Beijing, were seen reading in the school library, writing calligraphy, singing in classrooms and playing games on campus.

They were enjoying the free winter vacation care service offered to students whose parents were too busy to take care of them.

The Xiong'an campus of Beijing's prestigious Shijiahutong Elementary School opened last autumn, becoming the first primary school to open in Xiong'an, as the highly-anticipated "city of the future" finally took shape.

On April 1, 2017, China announced plans to establish the Xiong'an New Area in Hebei province, to relieve Beijing of functions non-essential to its role as the national capital and advance the coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region.

In less than seven years, Xiong'an has been transformed from a blueprint into reality, and it is being built at a rapid pace.

"Our students are all the children of builders of the city of Xiong'an, and the school is obligated to relieve them of their worries by taking care of the children during the winter vacation," said Wang Ying, vice principal of the school's Xiong'an campus.

In October 2023, the education authorities in Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei jointly signed an action plan for boosting the coordinated development of education. Under the cooperation mechanism, schools in the three areas are encouraged to engage in personnel exchanges and resource sharing in areas such as digital education.

Last semester, students on the Xiong'an campus of the Shijiahutong Elementary School took live courses provided by teachers from the Beijing campus, in which they interacted with the teachers through an online platform.

Wang said teachers in Xiong'an participate in collective lesson preparation, offline training and seminars together with their peers in Beijing, thus ensuring that students in the two places enjoy the same quality of education.

During the winter vacation, Hebei University hosted a training course for teachers in Hebei, inviting more than 60 experts from prestigious universities in Beijing to give lectures. More than 30,000 primary and secondary school principals and high school teachers from Hebei's city of Baoding participated in the training, both online and offline.

The Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region boasts a great number of prime colleges and universities, as well as an abundance of high-end research talent. The coordinated development of the region is expected to promote the share of education resources and bridge the gaps in the development of education.

Over the past decade, more than 200 primary and secondary schools in Beijing and Tianjin municipalities have established cooperative education ties with more than 200 schools in Hebei, while 15 Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei vocational education alliances and 22 university alliances have been established for the coordinated development of education.

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