Chinese School Raises Questions about Marks and Fees

KW Chinese School runs on Saturdays at Sir John A MacDonald Secondary School.

The average mark at the end of the semester is really important for high school students, as it decides whether the desired universities will give the offers to them or not. Therefore, selecting courses seems to be one of the most critical parts for high school students.

Many students will choose one or two elective courses that they are good at to increase their average marks as much as possible. 

At KW Chinese School, located at Sir John A Macdonald Secondary School, the credit and the mark are officially admitted by Waterloo region School Board and the Ontario application system.

The original idea behind Chinese school is to provide some Chinese children who were born and lived in Canada to practice their first language. But recently, many Chinese students who come from China use Chinese courses to get an extremely high mark benefiting university applications.

A Chinese teacher of Kw Chinese School says, “Students whose first language is Chinese can definitely have a high mark on essays, tests and pronunciations, even though they do not really listen in my class. These years, my classes are not active, because there are too many students who come from China in my classes. At least most of them got 99 percent in this course, and a few students who cannot speak Chinese very well get a lower mark.” 

Chinese schools have become popular to Chinese students, but there are also many doubts for newcomers. Guangheng Y is a Grade 12 student at WCI who is confused about Chinese courses. He says that the inclusion of Chinese courses is unfair, because local students do not have this opportunity to take this kind of course, so he thinks that the mark from Chinese courses maybe should not be allowed on a university application.

The second factor is that there is a huge gap of fees between international students and Canadian citizens. The education fees for international students is $2200 and $50 for Canadian citizens for the same class. This is a big reason why Chinese students do not want to take these courses, because they are quite expensive.

On the other hand, there are students who choose to take Chinese courses who think that paying $2200 in exchange for a high mark is valuable. Grade 12 student, Shuai Y, says, “We may not get a high mark on math or English classes, but I can make sure that I can get a very high average mark on Chinese course. The truth is most of us get 99 percent on this course, and we can use this mark to apply to university, so why don’t we take Chinese courses?”

Courses offered by language schools that can be used on university applications raise questions about marks, but they also raise questions about who has access to this education – and these marks.