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Parents fuel crazy house prices near good schools

By Xie Wenting (Global Times)

11:11, April 15, 2013

A property dealer said that a single room near one of the best schools in Beijing now costs more than 100,000 yuan ($16,150) per square meter.

Kang Jianqiang, a property dealer with Xinbaisheng, said that a room within a courtyard in Shijia Hutong near Shijia Primary School, Dongcheng district, only 8 meters square, costs 1.3 million yuan.

"If you buy it, you can register your child's hukou (household registration) here. After his hukou has been registered for three years, he can be enrolled in Shijia Primary School," said Kang. He has already sold a 2-meter-square room in Shijia Hutong that was used to enroll a child in school, Kang said.

A one-bedroom apartment in Huaqing Jiayuan residential community in Wudaokou, Haidian district, near Zhongguancun Second Primary School, costs more than 70,000 yuan per square meter, said HomeLink property dealer Liu Fa.

A man surnamed Wang, who bought a house in Wanshou Lu, Haidian district, said he spent more than 2 million yuan on a 60-square-meter apartment.

He would not say which school he bought the property for, but Wang stressed he bought it so his 2-year-old son can receive a better education.

Wang said he owns a more than 100-square-meter home in Daxing district, but the area lacks good education resources.

"We'll move to the new apartment when my son goes to primary school," Wang said.

Chu Zhaohui, a researcher with China National Institute for Educational Research, warned that parents should be more rational because it is more important to find what children are good at than simply sending them to a good school.

"The fundamental reason for buying expensive houses near good schools is the unfair distribution of education resources," Chu noted.

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