The Ministry of Education (MOE) has lifted its recruitment target for short-term rural teachers by300 percent in just two weeks, in a move to both raise standards and siphon off some of the vast army of graduate jobless.
The latest target is 150,000 more than the ministry announced two weeks ago, when it said 50,000 short-term teachers, to be paid by a special central budget fund, were wanted in the rural areas in 2009.
The newly added teaching posts would be paid by local authorities, the ministry said Monday in a report posted on its website.
It said the job opportunities would be mainly open to fresh college graduates.
The move was aimed at improving the quality of rural teachers, and to resolve the paradox that colleges graduates were facing gloomy employment prospects, whereas primary and middle schools in rural areas were desperately in need of qualified talents, the ministry said.
College graduates are encouraged to take up the posts in the countryside, especially in poverty-stricken areas, to teach English, arts, science and physical education which are usually weak in rural education.
They would work for three years at rural primary or middle schools, and would be encouraged to renew their three-year contracts with local education authorities once the contracts expire.
Their salaries would be the same as teachers working in public schools in the rural areas.
The short-term teacher project was launched in 2006 to help college graduates find employment. Close to 60,000 people took up the posts from 2006 to 2008.
A total of 6.11 million fresh graduates -- 520,000 more than in2008 -- are expected to enter the job market this year. --BEIJING, March 31 (Xinhua)