After-school classes in focus
China will bolster oversight of institutions that provide off-campus academic training for primary and middle school students, according to a guideline published by the State Council General Office on Aug 22.
The move aims to reduce the burden for primary and middle school students and standardize the development of such institutions, the guideline said.
According to the guideline, institutions must be licensed by local education departments and obtain business certificates before they can conduct off-campus training.
Provincial education departments should set specific standards in coordination with other departments, ensuring that local extracurricular educational institutions give classes in fixed locations with stable teams of qualified teachers.
The guideline also requires institutions to inform local education departments of the details about after-school classes such as the content, schedules, and target students, as well as making the information public.
Certificates and licenses will be reviewed every year, according to the guideline, which requires local governments to publish lists on their websites of both the qualified institutions and those failing to meet the standards.
Institutions are required to come up with their curriculums in accordance with national standards, and they are banned from hiring teachers who have teaching duties at schools.
They are also urged to follow the relevant regulations when they hire foreign teachers.
They are only allowed to charge fees for a training period of less than three months. Education departments are also required to step up oversight of the fees with financial authorities.
Off-campus training institutions that fail to obtain the approval or violate relevant laws or regulations will be put on a blacklist, which will be included in the national credit information system.
The guideline also urges schools to improve the quality of education as well as services for students after school time, including measures to allow for a flexible time for students to leave the school and a ban on schools collaborating with off-campus institutions in its recruitment.
Economic data will be enhanced
A revised regulation on the national economic census was released on Aug 23 to ensure the accuracy and timeliness of economic census data.
The revision to the regulation, which was passed by a State Council executive meeting on July 4, was aimed at keeping the regulations in line with the Statistics Law, which was revised in 2009.
The revision includes items that cover the range and methods of the census as well as the duties and working procedures of census agencies.
Under the current regulations, statistics on the self-employed can be compiled through sampling surveys. The revision puts small and micro-sized businesses in the same category.
The revision also allows statistics agencies to collect data through digital forms filled on-site or online, instead of handwritten forms.
The revised rules add articles to protect privacy of businesses in the census. Statistics agencies and their employees are required to keep the confidentiality of State and business secrets and personal information obtained in the census.
Migrant workers get medical help
China will enable the direct settlement of medical expenses for migrant workers and those who start businesses outside their home provinces to better facilitate the free flow of talent.
The decision was made at a State Council executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang on Aug 22.
According to a decision at the meeting, migrant workers and those who start new businesses outside their home provincial areas can enjoy the catalogue of drugs and medical facilities in the areas where they work.
The settlement of expenses, however, will be conducted in their home provincial areas based on the local standards.
According to a decision at the meeting, grassroots medical institutions will be the major target to fulfill work on direct settlement. Each county will have at least one designated medical institution by the end of this year.
Additionally, further efforts will be made to ensure the timely inclusion of all designated medical institutions into the national unified settlement e-platform, promoting online direct payments.