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Ghostwriters doing homework (2)

By Zheng Jinran and Luo Wangshu  (China Daily)

15:44, August 17, 2012

Some teachers and parents are aware of the scheme and know that it has been around for years. Some say that they understand the students, who are faced with pressure to finish multiple assignments and still have to prepare for exams.

Gan Xiaoying, a mother in Chongqing, asked her 15-year-old son to take an English class at a training center during the summer holiday. But she still wants him to seek overseas schooling.

"Most of their assignments repeat what they've learned, which rarely improves their knowledge, I guess. But I can't blame his teachers, because all the exercises target the gaokao (the national college entrance exam)," she said.

"So I'll send my son abroad to sharpen his abilities and to learn and research," she said.

Her son, who declined to be named, said that most of his classmates don't treat homework seriously and instead copy from each other.

"Teachers don't really care about it either. Most of our homework will be sold as used paper after being collected when the new semester begins," he said.

Xu Lei, a teacher from No 80 High School of Beijing said that he is aware of the ghostwriters.

"I believe that many teachers don't really care about vacation homework," he said.

But in many schools, students are still given numerous assignments during long holidays, including the summer vacation.

"I think they are afraid of students forgetting what they learned if they don't practice during the long holidays," said Zhang Ting, a Chinese language teacher at Beijing No 5 High School. "But I encourage my students to read books during the summer vacation. They have huge pressure at school, and they deserve a break."

She didn't give lots of homework to her students, "But no assignments at all is also not good for them. Teachers normally give homework based on the students' behavior and learning habits.

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