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China to develop vocational education for farmers


16:59, July 23, 2013

BEIJING, July 22 (Xinhua) -- The Ministry of Education (MOE) said on Monday that it will accelerate the development of vocational education for professional farmers in order to safeguard food security and promote agricultural modernization.

Lu Xin, vice minister of MOE, said at a symposium on vocational education in rural areas that establishing and improving a vocational education system for professional farmers will a major task for the ministry in the future.

Lu added that the focus of the work will be training foregoers and production management talents.

A joint study by the MOE and the Ministry of Agriculture has found that China's rural labor force is both shrinking and aging.

The study also found that 70 percent of rural laborers have a primary and junior middle school education. The number of junior and senior high school graduates who choose to study agriculture is declining sharply.

As of the end of 2012, there were 12,663 secondary vocational schools in China, with 21.13 million students. About 2.19 million students were majoring in agriculture, forestry and fishing, accounting for only 10.35 percent of the total.

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