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December 18, 2006


Michael Butler

I happen to have a son in a public Elementary school in China and I KNOW that the reason he is studying math like a maniac has nothing to do with a desire to immigrate or study in the States.

The competition to get ahead is fierce here. The ones that don't compete get left behind quickly. Poverty or near poverty is still a part of life in China so people are fighting hard to escape the ever present backward tug of poverty.

The number of slots in good schools is very limited and everyone in China is starkly aware of the huge numbers of people who are competing to get into limited spots.

Math is one of the most important parts of the curriculum (along with Chinese and English) in Elementary school. Moreover the tests that people take put a premium on doing well in EVERY subject on the test.

Believe me, in this environment there is no need to look to University in America until you actually get into a good Chinese University (the immediate goal). While I applaud Roger's thinking he needs to be better informed on why Chinese children study so darn hard.

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