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Cities Close Down Overburdened 'Baby Hatches'
   2015-03-25 20:19:25    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Huang Shan



Cities close down overburdened 'baby hatches'

Some Chinese cities have reportedly put a halt to their "baby hatches" or shelters for abandoned infants, saying they cannot cope with the pressure from a rapid increase in numbers, with most children having illnesses or disabilities.

The first such island in Quzhou, east China's Zhejiang province, has been relocated to a welfare center for children. The city plans to pilot reform by placing limitations on the number of orphans and abandoned infants it would take in.

32 such shelters have been set up under a national pilot program providing care for 1,400 abandoned infants since the end of June last year.

However, cities including Guangzhou, Jinan and Xiamen have closed their overburdened baby safety islands for shortages in facilities, personnel and funding.

Experts say China should expand the abandoned-baby shelter program to ease the pressure on pilot cities and also step up a crackdown on the illegal abandonment of infants.


Overseas schools no longer appeal

The number of Chinese children studying overseas has decreased in recent years as parents become "more rational" and local schools offer more choice.

At the China International Exhibition Education Tour yesterday, the 12 booths set up by high schools from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom and other countries attracted interest from just 20 families in the whole of the morning session.

More than 15,000 students were granted visas to study abroad last year, an increase of 50 percent from 2013.

An expert says the increase was mostly due to an increase in the number of undergraduate students going abroad, as the number of children going to foreign high schools fell sharply.

He said this shows that parents in Shanghai are getting more rational about sending their children abroad after they saw other families had problems.

Some parents used to think they should let their children get exposure to international cultures and high-quality education so they would have an edge over their peers.


'Facebook generation' less likely to drink, smoke or be bullied

A new study says young teenagers are happier and healthier now than teenagers were a decade ago.

It found that the 'Facebook generation' of youngsters is less likely than their predecessors to drink alcohol, smoke tobacco or cannabis, or get bullied.

A growing proportion of 11 to 15-year-olds engage in behavior that would make their parents proud. They eat fruit and vegetables, take exercise, clean their teeth, and talk to their mothers and fathers.

However the study complained that despite the increasing levels of health and well-being, adolescents now are just as likely to be fat as the generation of the 2000s. Obesity rates, it said, did not decline between 2002 and 2010.

The findings, based on a series of papers put together with the help of the World Health Organization, are the latest to underline the increasing trend for teenagers to avoid risky behavior in favor of a healthier lifestyle.



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