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A Cradle of implementing k-12 education: the Vocational Stars Admission

A lack of educational resources in remote areas gives students little chance to enter better colleges, so the Ministry of Education (MOE) initiated the Vocational Stars Admission in 2007. There were 4 national technological universities which offered admission to 250 students, and replaced traditional written testing with document review and interview.

In addition, in order to ensure that students from nearly 300 vocational high schools have equal chance to study in high quality technological universities, the plan restricts each college to admitting only one student from one vocational high school.

The Vocational Stars Admission is highly approved by vocational high school teachers and parent groups. It not only successfully helps students living in disadvantaged areas to enter colleges, but also guides them into local high schools. This eliminates the trend of studying at prestigious high schools far from students’ living areas, which is caused by the intense exam-oriented educational system. It can also provide high schools in remote areas with a new style of admission, and enhance the schools’ images.

In order to implement the plan successfully, the MOE asked each technological university to actively assist and take care of students from Vocational Stars Admission so they can get on with their college lives easily. These methods include offering preparatory classes during summer vacation, as well as learning support and relevant daily-life guidance in economic, life, and psychological adjustment during the semester.

The Vocational Stars Admission gets positive response for its policy and effectiveness. It successfully helps vocational high school students nationwide enter universities, and increases the quality of schools in remote areas. The plan also leads schools to develop in the direction of homogenization and better quality, which will have a great effect on implementing the k-12 education policy of entering a high school within the school district. Thus the number of students admitted and the number of colleges accepting these students increase every year. In 2013 for example, there are 32 quality universities of technology offering admission to 2,027 students.