While most of you are celebrating the weekend by drowning your work woes in the alcohol-charged brunchtime beverage of your preference (lucky bastards), thousands of students across China today and tomorrow are facing one of the most stressful and terrifying events of their young lives: gaokao—China’s ultra-competitive college entrance exams.
SCMP reports that temples around the country have been flooded with parents praying to Confucius over the results of the exams on which many of their children’s futures are riding.
If a Confucian temple is not available, a tree will suffice. Parents of students in Liuan, Anhui province have turned to an old willow located in the grounds of a high school in Maotanchang. The school is called the “gaokao mill” among locals for successfully preparing students to pass the exam. The wizened tree is often surrounded by anxious parents and relatives who believe it can bring luck, according to photos spread online.
Two female students at Maotanchang high school also prayed to the statue of Mao Zedong on a nearby hill on June 4.
In Mianyang , Sichuan province, parents in 70 private cars drove students to their designated test schools on June 5. […]
The Foshan municipal government in Guangdong announced this week that all kinds of entertainment activities were banned within 500 metres of any test centre.
This included the village square dancing loved by retirees.
21CN.com posted images of parents in Wuhan burning paper and lighting off fireworks for students taking the exams, and the topic of “gaokao blessing” has already surpassed all other trending subjects on Weibo with over 57 million posts.
Over 9.4 million students registered for the test this year—270,000 more than last year, the Post reports. Based on stories from previous years’ tests, we’re counting our blessings we’re not a high school-aged student in China right now. Scary, scary stuff.