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25% of students in Shanghai plan to work abroad

By Zhou Wenting (China Daily)

08:48, May 10, 2012

More than 25 percent of junior high and primary school students born in Shanghai expect to work and live abroad after finishing school, a survey has found.

By contrast, the figure for students who were born outside the municipality and now study in schools in Shanghai is 18 percent.

The population and development studies at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences published the report on Tuesday after handing out a questionnaire and interviewing nearly 1,500 students between the ages of 9 and 14 over the last three months.

This is the first-ever research into where young students' want to earn a living, said Zhou Haiwang, deputy director of population and development studies at the academy, adding that the percentage of students who said they wanted to work and live abroad was higher than they expected.

"It's widely known that Shanghai natives refuse to go to study or work in other cities in the country, even with an enviable offer. But now they are looking abroad," he said.

Data from the Ministry of Education showed more than 330,000 people nationwide went abroad to study in 2011, making China the biggest supplier of students to Western schools.

Many high schools in Shanghai, just like many other schools in the country, have special classes for students applying for universities overseas.

Zhou Haoyu, a third-grader, is taking one of those classes at Shanghai Yan'an High School, and said he has 21 classmates. Shanghai has been an international city since the 1920s, said Zhou Haiwang, and the various exchanges have given children a broader vision.

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