This picture was taken by Lu Qixing in an elementary school in Shanjiang Township in Fenghuangshan (Phoenix Hill) County of Jiangxi Province on July 29, 2012. The sister, a 2nd grader comforted her little brother to take a nap while attending a class. Their parents were hundreds of miles away working as migrant workers to support the family. The boy's head looks big perhaps due to malnutrition.
It's a common scene in many rural schools in China. Children in poverty not only have to take care of their family, but also keep up with school.
The kids are looking up to their parents. They know they have to contribute with their own ways because their parents are working even harder for the family. They understanding going to school is a duty that every kid undertakes as a natural law. That is the secret for the Chinese success.
If the parents can bring home more by not working, thanks to a skewed welfare system, then who can these kids look up to? If going to school in the morning is praised as a virtual, then why do they have to elevate themselves to where they do not see themselves belong?
Children in Zhangjiawan Village, Sangzhi County of Hunan Province went to school, climbing these multi-level high ladders. Although grownups and elders would not go out of village in years, children, beginning at 5 year old, climb up and down these ladders two times a day to go to school in the town. If they drop, it will take awhile to reach the bottom of the valley 800 feet down.
But that no excuse to not go to school, and no one had ever even thought that way. This is how Chinese children go to school, without a school bus, without attendance bonus, without free lunch.
Readers of Daily Mail commented: Those truants in the UK should count their luck seeing how much effort these kids put into going to school; the road to success is paved with snakes and ladders; how amazing to see a five year old read by herself before school; are our politician still trying to figure out why China's the taking over? Hard working and self disciplines; we wouldn't have so many obesities had our kids going to school like that!