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Should Children of Frontline Medical Staff Get Bonus Points For School Entrance Exams?
Some provinces and cities have introduced policies to support the members of the medical assistance teams sent to Hubei Province, the epicenter of the outbreak in China
 VOL.13 June ·2020-06-21

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 epidemic, countless medical workers have joined the fight against the epidemic. In order to recognize the dedication of the medical staff, some provinces and cities have introduced policies to support the members of the medical assistance teams sent to Hubei Province, the epicenter of the outbreak in China. The policies include temporary daily allowances, preferential treatment for promotions, arrangements for rest and recuperation and free medical examination. People believe all of these policies are appropriate and reflect care for the medical workers on the frontlines.

In Hubei, children of frontline medical staff can have 10 awarded marks for the senior high school entrance examination in 2020. In Sichuan, children of frontline medical workers will have an opportunity to choose a school according to their will.

But these policies related to school admission have aroused discussion in the society. Supporters say that anti-epidemic medical staff should be rewarded for their work on the frontlines, because if they lose their lives due to their work, it's the children who would suffer the most. Opponents counter that giving extra points to their children undermines the fairness of the examination system. There are many people in other professions who have risked their lives in this battle against the epidemic, such as policemen, drivers, cleaning workers. So, the policy of bonus points could be biased.

Pros

WANG ZIMO

Commentator of Guangming Daily

Beijing

The reason for the controversy is that some people think it may hurt the principle of equity in education. Fairness is the core element of social ethics, especially in the field of competition. However, equity in education is a part of the larger principle of social equity. From the perspective of social development, it is not only natural, but also necessary to use a part of social resources for rewarding certain groups, which is the "cost" that the society must pay to maintain its normal operation.

We all know that good educational resources are scarce. So, in my opinion, the content of reward should include such resources. As for the financial reward proposed by some people, it will also amount to a huge cost if all the worthy medical staff are to be paid. As long as the reward involves the interests of others, it will inevitably generate debate.

ZENG PENGYU

Writer

Beijing

There are many categories of bonus points in our high school entrance examination and college entrance examination system. So, if we have no problem with bonus points for ethnic minority and students with special skills, then we should not have any objection to this policy. Because it's unfair to say that we are only against bonus points for children of medical workers who are fighting the epidemic on the frontlines.

As to the argument that only material rewards should be given to the medical staff, I don't think there is a conflict between examination bonus points and material rewards. Bonus points can also be considered a type of material reward. Although this policy is not beneficial to those medical staff whose children have already taken such exams, some families will still benefit from this policy.

JIANG WEN

Editor of Yibin Evening News

Sichuan Province

Since the outbreak of the epidemic, the medical staff in Hubei Province have been fighting the epidemic on the frontlines. They hardly had time to drink and eat, let alone supervising their children during their studies.

They have fulfilled their responsibility toward the society, but not necessarily toward their children. While other parents stayed at home and urged their children to study, medical professionals were in hospitals taking care of patients. The government's assessment of the situation and the extra care given to the children of medical workers is not only recognition of their selfless efforts, but also affirmation of their achievements in the fight against the epidemic. I believe the public can understand the government's support to medical staff in the form of bonus points given to their children.

 Cons

LI GUOQING

Founder of dangdang.com

Beijing

We are very grateful for the contributions of all frontline medical staff. However, when it comes to giving their children extra points for entrance examinations, I firmly oppose it.

The system of entrance examinations for high school is a relatively fair way to put everyone at the same starting line. Therefore, there should be no extra points based on special contributions or considerations. If extra points are handed to the children of medical workers for their special contribution, it will be unfair to other children. What's more, we cannot blur the boundaries between parents and children.

But can we help the children of the medical workers improve their performance? Of course we can by giving more financial support to medical staff, so that they can use the money to hire better tutors and let their children enjoy a better life.

JIAG JINGJING

Commentator of West China City Daily

Sichuan Province

In China, the competition for high school entrance examination is fierce. In this process, even a difference of one point can make a huge impact on the ranking.

If a student obtains admission to a better high school due to the allocation of bonus points, it means that another student loses his or her opportunity. It is not only unfair to other students, but also detrimental to the principle of equity in education. In fact, we have seen that in recent years the educational ministry has been vigorously reducing the bonus point allocation in the college entrance examination system. There are many ways to reward medical staff. Simply giving extra points to their children is perhaps one of the most inappropriate ways. After all, the frontline medical workers with children sitting in this year's entrance examinations form a small part of the total medical personnel. The children of other medical staff don't enjoy such a benefit. So, the policy can be deemed unfair.

JIN YU

Company employee

Heilongjiang Province

I think this policy deprives other children of opportunities and it is only suitable for medical staff with children of certain ages. There are a lot of young nurses working on the frontlines who don't have children who can benefit from the policy. And what about experienced doctors whose children are grown up and don't need this policy?

The fight against the epidemic was a nationwide endeavor and people from different fields joined this battle. Across the country, policemen watched the highway intersections around the clock and community workers braved the cold and storm to perform their duties. They also took risks and made their contribution. Should we also give their children entrance examination bonus points? If not, then is that fair?

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