Degrees, real life, and April Fools – Joel Martinsen
News came from Pinghe County in Fujian this week that a junior high school diploma is required for county residents to apply for work permits, driver’s licenses, or marriage certificates. According to the government memo announcing the rules, the aim is to cut down on dropout rates during China’s nine years of compulsory education. A government official quoted in the reports said that the rules were not being strictly enforced; they are merely intended to make more people aware of how difficult things may be in the future without a diploma.
The rule first came to widespread attention when the mother of a child who had dropped out to find work in Guangzhou complained that the school demanded a 650-yuan payment or else her son would be unable to get married. According to a teacher at a local high school, a middle school diploma is contingent on sitting for the high school entrance exam, which carries a 650-yuan fee….[Full Text]
- Photo: Middle school diploma from 1968.