University access policy for athletes under review

A Chinese system that places promising athletes in prestigious universities while the less athletic compete in annual entrance examinations is spurring controversy and may be reformed in this year’s entrance examination, writes Yiqi Sun for UPI.

The 2001 Tertiary Admissions Policy for Outstanding Athletes provided the first path to college-level schools for students with non-academic talents. It allows 235 of China's 844 universities to accept students on the basis of talent in sports such as table tennis, basketball and running.

But debate about the policy erupted in January, when the People's Daily, the official Chinese government newspaper, announced the policy would be reformed. Opponents say the programme is unfair to regular students competing for school slots. Supporters see the policy as a solution to education and employment problems Chinese athletes face after retiring from competition.
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