Remarkable Results of Reform and Development Of Teacher Education
The rejuvenation of a nation depends upon education and the development of education depends upon teachers. The Communist Party and the governments always pay great attentions to teacher education and have it on top of their agenda. The Fourth National Conference on Teacher Education was held in 1980. The targets and tasks of teacher education in the new era were defined at the meeting after summing up thirty years' experience. In 1985, the Decision of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China on the Reform of Educational System pointed out that the development of teacher education and training for in service teachers should be regarded as strategic measures in developing education. Teacher education had been promoted to a much higher status than ever. The National Meeting on Secondary and Primary School Teachers was held in the same year at which the targets, policies and procedures for building the contingency of teachers for basic education and a set of policies for further development of teacher education were confirmed in accordance with the above-mentioned decision. The Outline for Reform and Development of Education in China issued in 1993 emphasized in a clearer term that "governments at all levels should increase their financial input to improve teacher education. "The 5th National Meeting of Teacher Education held in 1996 pointed out," teacher education should be regarded as the strategic priority for the development of education. Governments are responsible for a better teacher education system. Governments at all levels should take teacher education as a great undertaking for centuries to come that is beneficial for society and future generations." The strategic status of teacher education and the necessity and importance for its development were further strengthened.
Since the policy of reform and opening-up to the outside world was adopted, teacher education in China has entered into a new stage for development with the efforts made by all teachers in the country. It has been achieved with the leadership and attention given by the governments at all levels and educational administration departments£® Teacher education continues to follow the socialist orientation and serves for basic education. As the competence of schools and reform are gradually improved, great development and remarkable achievements have been made in teacher education. It has been on the priority list of the governments at al1 levels to increase their input so as to speed up the standardization of teaching conditions. The management of schools is becoming more standardized and scientific. The quality of teaching and the academic competence of the faculty members in the teacher training institutions are comprehensively improved through deepening reform. Plenty of achievements in scientific research especially in educational research are accomplished. The scopes of international exchanges and cooperation are broadened. Multilateral and bilateral international cooperation are strengthened.
Teacher training institutions and colleges of different kinds and levels have educated thousands of qualified teachers for secondary and primary schools and have trained thousands of teachers through in-service means. They have made historic contributions to basic education, and especially for the development of nine-year compulsory education and upgrading the quality of education in the country. In 1998, the total number of teachers in regular secondary and primary schools had reached 9,516,500, out of which 5,819, 400 were primary school teachers,3,054,700 were junior secondary school teachers and 642,400 were senior secondary school teachers.
Teacher education is the manufacturing machine for the Chinese education undertaking. Teacher education in China has supported the largest basic education system in the world£® Its reform and development shall strongly boost the changes in the Chinese basic education and shall contribute greatly to the improvement of the quality of the nation.