GET2020|Facing Challenges Head-On: Homeschool, Study Abroad, and New Infrastructure

Introduction: It was beyond doubt that the year 2020 must be an important time pivot for the education industry. As the COVID-19 spreads since the beginning of this year, education is disrupted globally, but learning cannot be stagnant. In this special year, JMDedu will hold the GET (Global Education Technology) Summit under the theme of “Redefine Learning” to help both Chinese and international EdTech practitioners deep dive into the changes and rebuild confidence.

While what has been significantly changing in China? And where will the opportunities lie in the Chinese education market? In the upcoming weeks leading to the GET 2020 Summit, we will share our insights on how companies and organizations are rapidly adapting to change, as well as explore potential opportunities for further business collaboration.

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During the past few weeks, we focused on the OMO trend in the Chinese education market, which boosts new possibilities of the dual-teacher model and vocational education. As the last piece of the Pre-GET Series, this article will show you the chances in the sectors of parenting education, international education, as well as the buzzword — new infrastructure(新基建) for education.

Regaining a sense of parenting education

After the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in China, parents were required to work from home and homeschool their children. In this context, the parent-child relationship has been revisited by many Chinese families. In general, kids not only learn from school, but also from their parents and the whole society. And family education has always been attached more importance because family could be a bond, a long-lived relationship that holds its members with the thread of affection.

At the beginning of the epidemic, parents kept their eyes on ensuring that their children did not fall behind the school learning progress. Parents never regret spending money on their children’s education from paying for several online courses to buying diversified teaching tools. However, it gradually became apparent that e-learning is not suitable for little kids. Parents began to focus on themselves and rethink their role in the education of their children. Thus, the cooperation between family and school has gained more attention.

When China’s 80s and 90s generation give birth to a baby, they have a totally different education mindset from their parents. They can realize what kind of education is needed in this era, so advanced education concept from overseas for early childhood still have a large market space. While at this time, parents will no longer focus on what the children could learn but eyeing for how they could better teach the children.

International education on rise in China

Reports have repeatedly analyzed that the chaos unleashed by the coronavirus pandemic will not rootly change students’ plans of studying abroad. Many students have studied at home and watched live-streaming courses, even suffering from jet lag during this semester. But they have to admit that the learning effect and life experience are quite different compared to going abroad. Moreover, for students attending international schools in the K-12 stage, it is almost impossible for them to return to the public education system and go to the top universities by taking the college entrance examination. Many students are facing academic interruption amid the severe epidemic worldwide.

In this case, domestic international education will become a new alternative service. Studying abroad is challenged by unknowns and variables. Enjoying international education in China has become another option. Therefore, whether it is an international education program at a primary, secondary, or university level, it will usher in new development chances.

As for the international education program in Chinese-run schools, except for some subjects that involve national conditions, courses are usually taught by foreign teachers and Chinese teachers with a study abroad experience in foreign languages. And the textbooks, curriculum design, teaching resources, and evaluation systems are also consistent with overseas schools. Besides, online academic and after-school resources available to students of Chinese-run universities are the same as those of foreign university students.

In the “Opinions on Accelerating and Expanding the Opening up of Education in the New Era” issued by the Chinese government, four regions for developing international education with different features have been planned, including Hainan Free Trade Port, Xiong’an New Area, the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, and Yangtze River Delta region. Currently, Pearson Group has cooperated with most schools in Xiong’an New Area to undertake English teachers’ training. There will be a wider space for international cooperation in this new wave that high-quality teacher training courses could be introduced.

What is New Infrastructure for education?

Amid the epidemic, hundreds of millions of teachers and students have moved to distance learning. This educational scenario relies on applying powerful information infrastructure, 5G technology, and artificial intelligence.

According to Yang Dan, chairman of the Zhongguancun Internet Education Innovation Center, the education industry will be the main space for landing 5G and AI technology. “Meanwhile, the application of 5G and AI in education can also accelerate the recovery of new infrastructure investment costs.” And how education can ride on the wave of new infrastructure has also been heated discussed in the National Two Sessions in 2020.

5G technology can be adopted to comprehensively solve network access problems, AI teaching platform can be used to link learning equipment and classroom control, the big data can be introduced to evaluate teaching effects. The integration of the new technologies can help achieve educational equity and teach students following their aptitude, even form new educational concepts, new educational methods, and new teaching laws.

At the upcoming GET2020 Summit, we set up a unique forum to share the progress and views of China’s educational new infrastructure development. We look forward to sharing insights with our overseas readers and exploring the prospects of all mankind in the 5G era, so welcome to join the virtual event. See you soon!

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