China should establish a job alert system for preschool education to meet the increasing demand of kindergarten teachers as the effects of the “two child” policy gradually show, according to the country’s education experts.
The number of children at preschool ages will increase greatly in 2019 and reach its peak two years later. The country is likely to see 15 million new kindergarten students in 2021, which suggests a demand gap of 110,000 kindergartens and three million professionals.
Statistics show that the ratio between the nation’s teachers and preschool students stood at a low point of 1:12 in 2016, which means nearly 2.5 million more teachers are needed to increase the figure to a more reasonable proportion of 1:7.
According to Li Yan, head of the preschool education department of Shanghai Normal University, though preschool organizations recruit almost all the graduates of this major at each graduation season, the annual demand gap of nearly 3,000 newly added job vacancies in the city of Shanghai is still hard to meet.
Some of the kindergartens recruit supernumerary teachers or child-care workers to deal with the demand, while others hire graduates with unrelated majors but who have the required licenses.
However, experts warn that this approach is not the ideal solution, because the children are at an important phase of development and the teachers need to be strictly screened.
Shanghai is expected to establish a job alert system for preschool education, said Jiang Ming, head of the Shanghai Educational Human Resource Exchange & Service Center, which will make alerts and suggestions based on changes in this industry.