Chinese Buddhist Stone Carvings to Be on Display in Berlin

Some 35 Buddhist stone carvings from Qingzhou, east China's Shandong Province, will be put on display during the third Asia-Pacific Week in Berlin, Germany, scheduled for September 17 to 30.

These are among the 400 pieces discovered in Longxing Temple in 1996, all of which date back more than 1,500 years and were listed as a whole as one of China's top ten archeological findings of that year.

Among the 35 carvings are statues of Buddha, Bodhisattva and Maitreya, all bearing delicate adornments, painting and gilding.

They will be on display in Switzerland and Britain after the Asia-Pacific Week in Berlin, said a source from the provincial government.

The Asia-Pacific Week is a bi-annual event initiated by the Berlin municipal government to promote exchanges and cooperation between the German capital and the Asia-Pacific. China, together with other countries from the region, will participate in this year's event at the invitation of the municipal government of Berlin.

China Achieves Marked Progress in Education Cause

The education cause in China has witnessed marked progress over the past five years, with the caliber and social status of teachers raised to a higher level.

The number of Chinese teachers has exceeded 10 million, which basically meets the requirement of the reform and development of the sector, sources with the Ministry of Education said.

On the Teachers' Day this year, the Ministry conducted a comprehensive survey, which shows that the average age of Chinese teachers has become younger and more qualified as compared to five year ago.

Teachers aged 45 or younger now account for the majority of all staff members in Chinese universities, colleges, high schools, middle schools and elementary schools.

In 2000, some 20 percent of primary school teachers had two- year college or university degrees or above; 14.2 percent of high school teachers had four-year college or university degrees or above; and 31.3 percent of university teachers had graduate degrees or above.

The age structure of the teachers has become more rational than five years ago. In 2000, senior or high-ranking teachers accounted for 16.27 percent, 3.27 percent and 0.12 percent of the teachers at high schools, middle schools and primary schools, respectively, as compared to 15.73 percent, 2.02 percent and 0.065 percent in 1995.

The number of professors and associate professors accounted for 9.4 percent and 30 percent, respectively in 2000, compared with 7. 8 percent and 26.6 percent in 1995.

At colleges and universities, the number of professors aged 45 or below accounted for 26.3 percent of the total, and professors aged 35 or below accounted for 10.3 percent, sources with the ministry said.

Moreover, the efficiency of education staff has improved as the teacher-student ratios at schools of various level has become rational.

Over the past few years, teachers' salaries have been improved steadily. Their living conditions have become much better, with their average per capita living space higher than the average level of urban residents.

China introduced several regulations on the qualification certification of middle and primary school teachers, and related rules and regulations concerning Teachers' Law have been revised and improved.

Over 90 percent of school and university presidents have obtained on-the-job training, and 60 percent of them have attended political or management schools for re-training.

People's Daily Online ---