The news seems to be getting worse for middle-class families.
“Sanlian Life Weekly” recently issued a report, “study abroad cut off,” when the middle class family suddenly fell, “which cited three examples, some children studying abroad, suddenly found that the family can not provide their study abroad costs. Different people take different strategies, some choose to work abroad, insist on reading; Some choose to return home and begin the difficult process of readjusting.
However, I read the report carefully and found that these families are not middle class families in a sense, and most of them are people who have been successful in business, and some even have assets of hundreds of millions. This is similar to a report two months ago by Phoenix: as the business environment becomes more and more harsh, some private enterprises fall from the peak, so the fate of families changes, and the termination of study abroad becomes an additional victim.
This is not universal, because those who have fallen from the pinnacle of private enterprise are, after all, a minority.But one thing I suspect, and I believe, is that something more common must be happening, that truly middle-class families are now facing an even more severe supply crunch.
In 2016, Hai Qing starred in a TV series “A Small Separation,” which discussed the financial, psychological and family difficulties faced by middle-class families in the face of the fever to study abroad. Think about it now, like a lifetime.
Sending their children abroad to study was once an almost universal option for middle-class families. Many of my former colleagues used the same strategy, but they were luckier: Their children are now mostly through school, Or start a new life abroad, or return home, find a good big factory job: as for the future, is an unpredictable thing.
Most of them send their children out for the same reason I understand: after experiencing their own hellish competition for secondary education, they can’t bear the endless domestic competition for education, and they want to make their children have a complete and enjoyable educational experience.
The children of these people I have met, most of them are healthy and sunny, with a positive attitude towards life. Unlike their parents, who carry the heavy burden of the country and culture, they choose a very professional career, such as art, science, psychology and so on. One of my best friend’s children, after working for a few years, is now sharing in the WeChat Moments, is their own quit work after the travel and spiritual experience, looking really happy.
To be free, to be free, is always the hardest thing to do as a human being.I don’t know how many of these children are truly able to achieve that kind of freedom, but even a few of them are comforting.
What I do know, however, is that many Chinese parents send their children out for very different reasons: either to escape competition for education at home or to escape competition for jobs at home. They have seen so much risk and struggle in their education and careers that they know how hard it is to make the leap from the countryside to the small city.
The reason they send their children away is to find a more competitive position for their children, so that they can at least stabilize the middle class they have won, or even move up the ladder in the society.
Some time ago, there was a popular news of education in North America: those Chinese children who were extremely “excellent” in all aspects were generally rejected by rattan schools. Although they have perfect grades, perfect extracurricular scores (internships, practices, etc.), as well as perfect personal qualities (piano, painting, etc.), Fujiao shut them out because they were too perfect.
It certainly fits with what I’ve seen overseas.Parents who have emigrated overseas, not just at home, feel strongly that what Ivy League needs is a perfect CV, so they tend to spend a lot of money to train their children in all directions to fit Ivy’s needs, thus perfectly matching its announced enrollment requirements.
However, the difference in understanding is that the Ivy School’s definition of outstanding students is very different from the Chinese parents’ understanding of “excellent.” Excellence is not a standard, but the pursuit of freedom and love.
There’s a simple case of a child who spent three years in the lab, After writing a perfect thesis and failing seven years with another foreign child, Ivy chose the latterbecause they saw love in that child.
Chinese parents still view the Ivy League as a school that abandoned its struggle for existence more than a century ago.
In the struggle for existence at home, sending their children abroad to gain a competitive advantage is the point of departure.
Of course, the reason for studying abroad is not caused by the purpose of studying abroad, but it is closely related to it.
Studying abroad is a very heavy financial burden, which is one thing that anyone can understand. I haven’t looked at the recent financial burden, but if I just look at my personal experience living abroad more than a decade ago, I can roughly work out a basic fee scale.
In America, the annual cost of a medium college is about $50,000. That’s $200 thousand over four years. In a city like New York, the burden of rent is heavy, and it’s basically around $1,000 a month.
The dormitory that the school can provide is very limited, basically rely on rob, so a lot of students can not rob, can only rent a house nearby.It’s hard to live in a multi-person dorm, usually just two or three people living together. The college and the community will take care of it, and it’s very difficult to find a co-tenant.
If the cost of living to save a little, you can also hit 800 to 1000 dollars. Add in a bunch of other expenses, and no matter how much you save, you’ll need $2,000 a month. That’s another $40,000-50,000 a year. That’s another $200 thousand for four years.
Travel costs are also very heavy. Even if you only come back once a year, that’s tens of thousands of dollars. Overall, 4 years of education costs $500 thousand, which is about 3 million yuan. If you want to continue your graduate studies, it will be almost to 5 million yuan.
This number, probably a middle-class family will have to smash the pot to sell iron.
But the crux of the matter is not here, but the question of how foreign children and domestic children will complete their education.
The education of Chinese children is to study hard and not to do anything in a mess. Ten years cold window bitter, in exchange for a person. This is the idea of competitive education. Whether it is 3 million yuan or 5 million yuan, it is an investment in education.
Unfortunately, as far as I know, most American families can’t afford to pay $500,000 to $800,000 for an education. However, foreign families often easily completed the university education, that is what happened?
Most American families rely on education loans after their children go to school.In other words, most of the kids are already heavily in debt as soon as they go to college, and on top of that, they often have to work part-time to meet their daily expenses.
Remember that the purpose of their work is not to work study as a supplement, but that they must support themselves. Going to college is not an educational investment, but a preparation period for starting out in society. From college, because of education loan debt, because of the need to work to support themselves, so children from college, have started life.
No one thinks their parents are cruel. They still have a good relationship with their parents and receive funding from their parents from time to time, but one thing they know very well is that they have grown up. What parents give is supplement, and it is natural to feed themselves.
This is not competition, this is life.
Therefore, there is no such thing as a child in a foreign country, because from that time on, they have no longer been provided for.
It is true that education loans for domestic children may be a more difficult thing, because in most cases they are not provided to foreign students, but it is not impossible. What I do know is that if you push hard enough, if you understand that this is the way of life, this is the way of life, you will not lose your way to school.
Moreover, many foreign children will drop out of school because of the problem of survival, and then go back to school after a few years of work. Since it’s survival, since it is life, what have you to complain about?
But for the Chinese, this is unimaginable. It is wrong to give the child away, and it is even more wrong to “recycle” the child.
They never figured out what the purpose of giving it away was from the beginning.
The sudden fall of middle-class families is itself a false description.
Because in the Chinese context, there is no such thing as a middle-class family.
For a long time, the term “middle class” has been used to describe those who enter the workforce. Most of them, including me, have the experience of growing up in rural areas or small and medium-sized cities, and have changed their fate through the college entrance examination, thus entering the professional population, obtaining a stable income, and even owning their own houses, cars and seemingly good career prospects in the cities.
People who share this experience are considered “middle class,” and such families are defined as middle class families. Such a group of people are extremely persistent in preserving their social class, so they hope that through their children’s experience of studying abroad, they can stabilize this class status, or even continue to jump.After all, nobody wants to be nasty.
But this is all a dream.
The conditions for entering the middle class are very strict. The biggest asset that China’s “middle class” has is a house. This is their biggest and strongest asset. And most people’s current assets are in doubt.
In developed countries, the asset composition of the middle class is very complex, and the proportion of real estate in their asset allocation is not high.
Their portfolio often consists of several important components: a stable career structure, a combination of insurance (including personal, property and education, and social security), and necessary but insufficient liquidity.
Unless there is large-scale social unrest, the situation that can shake the overall assets of the middle class is not much.Real estate foreclosure is a huge risk for people in any country, the emergence of the 2008 financial crisis in the United States is serious, that is, tens of millions of people’s real estate mortgage problems, so that many people become negative equity.
But this situation is apparently rare. Because of the immobility of the social welfare system and insurance, the general decline of the middle class is extremely rare. In the history of the United States of America, only the Great Depression caused widespread middle-class bankruptcies.
But for China’s so-called middle class, apart from real estate, there is a lack of diversified asset security. Medical care, old-age care, parents, children, occupation, one of the links may cause the break of funds between individuals and families, which may lead to financial crisis, only studying abroad to cut off the supply is even a relatively good result.
Only the asset allocation of the house can be said to be middle class?The middle class is a social structure, a right structure and a security structure, not an income structure.
Most of what we call middle class are just false middle class.
When these middle class enter the economic downtrend period, the first thing that has the dilemma is the professional risk, once the personal income changes, the real estate assets immediately enters the crisis, not to mention the medical crisis, the upbringing crisis, the security crisis. And what crisis can middle-class families survive safely
In fact, the education crisis is only a crisis that brings about a small overall crisis. It is just that the Chinese people have always had older children, so this crisis is particularly serious.
It is a terrible loss for a family. But this disaster, in fact, from the moment to send the child out has been doomed. Overseas education based on the sense of competition brings great risks and low returns. Those who truly love, and give children the freedom of thought to study abroad, never fail, will not bring crisis. Because children themselves can think and find the way to survive and live.
The essence of this crisis is the crisis of the “middle class family” itself.The vulnerability of the middle class family innate, from the year before last in a variety of media frequently burst out of the “middle-aged unemployment crisis,” has foreshadowed the illusory middle class lifestyle is how to shaky.
The middle class lifestyle was originally just an illusion, but the dream has been done for a long time, and everyone believes it.