China has terminated 286 collaboratives programmes with foreign universities including partnerships with City, University of London, and New York University (NYU).
Public authorities have not specified the reason behind this sudden termination, but the decision was made less than a month after the recent government’s clampdown on the private tutoring industry. Following the regulations, tutoring companies are prohibited from conducting core-curriculum teaching on weekends and holidays.
They are also barred from earning profit or listing on the stock exchange. It is said that the reason behind this ban was to support the government’s overarching plan to reduce education costs associated with raising children. However, this move has only augmented people’s worries that only the select elite will be able to access top universities.
In response to public concerns, the Ministry of Education has stated that a careful review of all foreign partnerships is carried out annually to see whether they align with national standards.
The hashtag “#286 Chinese-foreign university programmes terminated” #286个中外合作办学终止办学# has been trending on Weibo, with heated discussions taking place by users who are worried about the impact this decision may have on their future. Many users are speculating on the true motivation behind these terminated partnerships.