167,000 New College Students
Source: Peking Review, No 43, October 25, 1974
Transcribed by www.wengewang.org
More than 167,000 workers, peasants and soldiers with practical experience have been enrolled in China's universities and colleges this year.
Taking criticism of Lin Piao and Confucius as the key link, universities and colleges this year have, under the unified leadership of local Party committees, conscientiously propagated and implemented Chairman Mao's instruction that "students should be selected from among workers and peasants with practical experience," and have made further reforms in the old enrolment system
Before the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, enrolment under the revisionist line in education was based on selecting students from among middle school graduates ac-cording to marks received in entrance examinations. The result was that a multitude of young workers, peasants and soldiers were denied access to higher education. Now the college students in our country are selected from among outstanding young workers, peasants and soldiers with rich practical experience. Most of them are middle school graduates who apply for further studies in the institutes of higher education after doing productive labour in factories or rural people's communes or after tempering themselves m army units for two years or more The masses in their respective units recommend the best of them according to their socialist consciousness and their work and study for approval by the local leadership and further examination by the colleges concerned.
In their enrolment work this year, all departments concerned penetratingly criticized the reactionary programme of Lin Piao who, following Confucius in advocating "restraining oneself and returning to the rites,” tried to restore capitalism in China. They also criticized such reactionary fallacies as some are 'born with knowledge' the theory of "genius," "the highest are the wise and the lowest are the stupid" and "he who excels in learning can be an official". The masses of workers, peasants and soldiers were informed beforehand about the details of enrolment work, such as the relevant principles, policies, methods, conditions and the number of students to be enrolled, so that people could make all-round comments and recommendations concerning the applicants, including opinions about their political quality, practical experience, cultural level and health
How was the cultural level of these youngsters judged? Generally speaking, personnel responsible for enrolment work made on-the-spot investigations and held discussion meetings with people concerned This was a more convenient way of soliciting opinions and comments and verifying the applicants' ability in analysing and solving practical problems
Many of the new college students this year are activists in the movement to criticize Lin Piao and Confucius and in grasping revolution and promoting production
Li Ya-lung, a passenger train conductor from the railway station of north China's big port city of Tientsin and a member of the workers' theoretical study group, loved his own work and read and studied conscientiously during off-hours In the movement to criticize Lin Piao and Confucius, he overcame many difficulties to study the historical experience in the struggle between the Confucian and Legalist schools and in class snuggle as a whole and made it serve the present class struggle He won favourable comments from his fellow workers, and was recommended this year to study history at Nankai University.
Wang Ho, another new student, returned home to be a veterinary in a commune in Tinghsi County in northwest China s Kansu Province six years ago after finishing school. In the last six years he had visited 92 production teams under the commune and examined their animals one by one By adopting effective or preventative measures, he succeeded in bringing the livestock's common and recurrent diseases under control The number of livestock in the commune increased considerably in the last few years in spite of drought In recommending him to attend university the poor and lower-middle peasants listed many of his good deeds and contributions to local farming and animal husbandry.
In the movement to criticize Lin Piao and Confucius, greater attention has been paid to enrolling outstanding women students this year proportionately, Kwangtung Province has enrolled 8 per cent more new women students than it did last year. Of the new students sent from Tibet to colleges in various parts of the country, women make up one-third. Women constitute more than half of the 8,300 youths chosen from the Heilungkiang Production and Construction Corps for study in the universities and colleges
Large numbers of young people of various national minorities in Sinkiang, Tibet, Inner Mongolia, Ningsia, Kwangsi and in many provinces and municipalities have been enrolled in colleges. Colleges in the Kwangsi Chuang Autonomous Region alone have enrolled more than 4,700 students from among the Chuang Miao, Yao, Tung and seven other minority peoples
Among the new college students are returned overseas Chinese who enter the new socialist colleges with warm love for the motherland and a strong desire to help build it up.