Jack Ma launches rural teachers support programme

Beijing, Sep 16 (IANS) A charity fund established by Jack Ma, founder of the Alibaba Group, will offer $1.57 million (10 million yuan) to 100 Chinese rural teachers each year to support rural education, it announced on Wednesday.

The Jack Ma Rural Teachers Plan was launched at Beijing Normal University on Wednesday, reports Xinhua.

One hundred rural teachers have been selected as recipients of the fund. The candidates must work in rural schools in west China, including Shaanxi, Gansu, Ningxia, Yunnan, Guizhou and Sichuan, for at least five years.

“Only when society respects rural teachers will more choose to join them,” said Ma.

China currently has about 3.3 million teachers in 150,000 schools for over 40 million rural students. Despite government funding for rural education, the gap between urban and rural areas has not been bridged.

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