Profile of Hangzhou Guotai Education Group
Hangzhou Guotai Education Group was founded by Ms. Zhang Xiaoying, a Taiwanese and piano educationist, representative of The Peoples Congress of Hangzhou, and standing member of Committee of the People's Political Consultative Conference of Jianggan District. Based on the Private Hangzhou Guotai Foreign Languages and Art School, it has grown to a big-scaled educational institution that has 6 campus, 79 classes, 3900 plus faculty members and students providing full-time courses and accommodations from receiving only 3 students in its startup. Guotai education covers kindergarten, pre-school education, elementary school, junior high school, senior high school and continuing education. The graduates receive the same certificates (being issued elementary school diploma, junior high school diploma, and senior high school diploma) as students of Chinese public schools. Every school of the Group focuses much on English education and art education and provides equal and balanced education for children with different nationalities, backgrounds, personalities and in different ages.
I. The Principal
A principal is the soul of a School who represents the image of the school.
The childhood of Principal Zhang was harsh though she was born in an intellectual and well-being family in
She was forced to leave her home when she was below 7 years old by her mad adoptive father and became homeless. A kind teacher allowed her to stay in a
She was very grateful to the teacher for allowing her to stay. The affection from the teacher turned out to be infinite affection of Ms. Zhang later.
When she studied in university, Ms. Zhang had this dream to found a boarding school full of love and warmth. The school should be as warm as a home. In order to realize her dream and convey the love, she began to prepare for the school in the spring of 1993.
II. The Establishment of Guotai
1. Making unremitting efforts in her life
To found a school, one should prepare for money, place, equipment and faculty. Ms. Zhang painstakingly visited many places for choosing an ideal location. She went to as far as
She would not give up her dream, which was just about to come true. She took a lot of pains, putting a notebook on a board and writing the feasibility report on establishing the school. The very beginning of Hangzhou Guotai Foreign Languages and
In the summer of 1993, in order to get the feasibility report approved, she began to learn walking after six month in bed. She wanted to conquer the illness with her iron will but she failed. Her weak body and muscles could not support her and she fell down again. Her right joint was fractured. At the high temperature of 40oC, she was carried on the back of her daughter or housekeeper to get her feasibility report approved. During that time, she fainted and was hospitalized for many times because of her weakness. The government officials sympathized for her and were moved and provided support for her. Unfortunately, at the same time, a private school was criticized by various news media of
She felt so rewarding despite the suffering and hardship. She was accompanied by her daughter, sitting along the
However, the difficulties of establishing a school were beyond her imagination. There were many unexpected time-consuming matters. There were no big deals but required patience and strong will. The success of the school is a miracle, a miracle with a lot of pains and pressures.
III. The Growth of
1. The school that couldn’t enroll new students
The school, rented, was just finished construction, the hygiene condition was very bad. In order to save money, Principal Zhang worked as a cleaner and bricklayer with her husband and daughter when she was still on a wheelchair. During October 20 and November 20 1993, she invested tens of thousands of Yuan for advertising but got no response. Her family moaned: “If you invested such a large amount of money in a real business, there would have good profit. But now you have yet received any student.” The only worker in charge of academic affairs and two workers in canteen left the school. Principal Zhang chose heading forward as she had had never given up for her ideal. She determined the school would open even though it only had one student.
One day, when she went to Mr. Zhu Deyuan, a calligraphist of
2. Loving students more than loving herself
One month passed, two months, six months and for a whole semester, the school only received three students. The school did not hire a cook. Principal Zhang put the electronic rice cooker beside her desk, cooking for workers, students and herself and handling business at the same time. She was like a mother for the three children. The 4-year-old twins from
In 1995, the situation of the school was getting improved. But an irresponsible action of a school doctor caused trouble. Mr. Zhang advised him change a job as the doctor was not suitable for doing work related to elementary school children. The advice was from goodwill but the doctor blamed and attacked her. He also made up rumor on news agencies and wrote a libel to governments. He made up this rumor that Guotai was found hepatocellular jaundice and ten plus students were hospitalized everyday. Parents rushed to transfer their children to other schools, media rushed in for news and the government interfered for investigation and examination. Thirty-two students left school, which had only 68 students. The Principal met unbelievable pressures from society, students’ parents, students, teachers and her family members. Eventually, she passed out at her office and came round after five days of intensive treatment.
When Guotai was in such hardship, the government of Jianggan District, the Education Bureau of Jianggan District and United Front Work Department of Jianggan District provided helps and supported Guotai step out of difficulties.
At 2 am of a snowy night in the winter of 1996, the Principal fell down from stairs when she was looking over dorms. Her left leg, used to be fixed with steel, wounded seriously. It took her 36 minutes to climb to her room. Her hard work- making wadded jackets for students, preparing meals for sick children and feeding them patiently were remembered by students, who are now in senior high school. They always say: “Principal Zhang is our lovely, respectable and unforgettable mom.”
3. Treating school teachings stuffs as her own sisters and brothers
Since she is a representative of The Peoples Congress of Hangzhou, a standing member of Committee of the People's Political Consultative Conference of Jianggan District and a director of Commerce and Industry Association, she is very busy. In order to spend more time on students and take care of them, she used to have only one meal a day and sleep for only three hours a night. She loves all the stuff of Guo Tai. She has simple meals every day and lives in a simply-equipped house, but all the houses of stuff’s are equipped air conditioners, color TVs and water heaters. She contributes to the poor stuffs many times, offers supports to the teachers to buy houses, admits hundreds of poor students to her school without taking any tuition and living fee…. Zhang Hao, who was the vice chairman of our School Trade Union, resigned from school to seek his personal development opportunity. But unluckily, he was diagnosed in his advanced stage of liver cancer. Seventeen days later (in June, 2003) he died, who was only forty years old. Actually he had nothing to do with Guo Tai, but our principal not only gave him a large amount of medical fee, and held a grand memorial meeting for him with all her family members, but also announced that she would bring up his two children who were less than 8 years old, and arranged work for his wife. A simply sentence of our principal’s, “Guo Tai is everyone’s home”, reflects her humane and cordial administration idea, reflects her kindness and broad-minded. As a result of her love, lots of teachers of outstanding ability have gathered at our school for her fame. Some students’ parents were very offensive for some misunderstandings but the Principal chose to tolerate. In her mind, such humiliation was nothing compared with her ideal of building a good school and fostering good students. Her great affection supported her to survive through difficulties. The faculty, workers and students have learned from her noble moral character and would be committed themselves to the country, the school, their parents, and be confident for themselves. Guotai will make great progress following the school tenet.
Led by Principal Zhang, Guotai Foreign Languages and
IV. Brief Information on Educational Departments of Guotai Education Group
Guotai’s various educational departments are located in Jianggan District,
Every educational departments of the Group has its own teaching equipment, spacious grounds for activities, standardized multi-media classrooms, computer rooms, reading rooms, painting rooms, dancing rooms, piano rooms, electronic keyboard rooms and modernized facilities for living. The students’ dorms, faculty apartments and offices are all equipped with air conditioners.
3. Teaching materials
The Chinese and mathematics textbooks for elementary school students are edited by
4. Achievements in Education
The academic work of the Group are undertaken by various experts in education, including Hong Guangyu, an elementary math education expert and former deputy director of the Education Bureau of Jianggan District; Yuan Yehan, former head of Chinese Department of Hangzhou No.2 High School; Qian Xiaohua, former head of Math Department of Hangzhou High School; Yao Lihua, former head of English Department of Hangzhou High School; Feng Nianzhu, former head of Physics Department of Hangzhou High School; Wu Wenjin and Yu Baolong, former Senior Math teachers of Caihe High School; and a group of experts from the education industry of Hangzhou and a group of committed young-to-middle-aged teachers. Every year, there are some students entering in
5. English Education
Guotai is well known for its focus on English education. Its various educational departments (senior high school, junior high school, elementary school and kindergarten) have hired foreign teachers to teach oral English. Every student is able to talk with foreign teachers at any time. Every educational department of the Group has been approved State Bilingual Education Base and got great achievements. For over 10 plus years, the schools have won many first awards in national, provincial, municipal and district contests for performing short English drama and English songs. In February 2005, Xu Shengxiang, a junior high school graduate of Guotai then (currently a student of Hangzhou No.14 High School) and Huang Siqi (currently in Class 1 Grade 5 of Guotai) won Gold Award, the highest award of the third national “Dandelion Cup” English contest. Hu Zhenzhen, who was a graduate of our Junior Three students, was enrolled by affiliated middle school of
6. Art Education
It is Guotai characteristic to promote art education. Guotai is one of the music and fine art level testing bases of
7. Physical Education
Our teachers of physical education have won many first places in various provincial, municipal and district sports events.
Our football team has won many first places in various games and attended games in
V. International Reputation
For 12 years since the school was founded, the advanced educational concepts, powerful faculty force and scientific educational and boarding management systems have drawn wide attention and won high remarks from various news agencies from home and abroad, from all walks of society and students’ parents. Hong Kong’s Takungpao, Wenweipo and Mainland
VI. International Exchange
In 1999, Guotai and Columbia International College of Canada became sister schools and signed an agreement on cooperative education. The senior high school graduates of Guotai may directly enter into the colleges of
VII. Financing Needy Students
Action is louder than words. It is so when comes to love. In the summer-autumn semester of 1999, in order to help the students who were outstanding but needy and help them realize their dream to attend school, Principal Zhang decided at the board meeting that Guotai would admit some tuition-waived students from remote rural areas and households of layoff parents. These students would attend Grade 1 of senior high school and Guotai would pay all expenditures for them. Though such a policy would cost 1 million yuan for the school and some people could not understand it and even consider it a fool action, Principal Zhang just dismissed with a smile. She always says that running a school is not for making money. Education a great undertaking and should benefit the people. Goodliness and happiness are derived from achieving truth, goodness and beauty deeply in the soul, which is more important than making money. A spirit is noble and admirable when it is free from fortune. So far, many tuition-waived students of Guitai have admitted by
VIII. A Bright Future
The school song composed and lyricized by Principal Zhang sung “schoolmates are like brothers and sisters; teachers are warm as parents. We get along and make friends; we learn and we grow. This is our big family. We will never forget our happy time.”
Accompanied by this touching school song, Guotai, a school full of love, is heading for a brighter future!