A dad in the city of Yingkou, in Liaoning province wanted a better learning environment for his daughter and decided to purchase a kindergarten to accommodate his daughter’s needs.
Most parents probably would have compared the learning environments of different kindergartens or contacted teachers to see how their child would get treated at the school, but this one father’s decision to spend millions has left many people mystified.
A parent at the kindergarten, Ms. Xu, explained her 5 year old daughter was going to this particular kindergarten until one day, she dropped her daughter off at the school and overheard someone say, “The school has changed owners, apparently someone bought the kindergarten for their daughter.” Ms. Xu was initially worried about the quality of education with the change in ownership, but later said, “It’s pretty good, there’s a new group of teachers and the facilities are newer.”
A reporter later confirmed with many teachers at the kindergarten, that the daughter of the purchaser of the kindergarten was going to the school, but the teachers were reluctant to elaborate on the present situation about the school and daughter.
The reporter also found out the education philosophy at the kindergarten had changed as well. The teachers told her after a kid is dropped off at the school, the boss always reminds all the teachers to provide equal attention and opportunity to all the kids and to not give special attention to any particular students.
The reporter noted the daughter of the owner of the school seemed extremely happy playing with her friends. A teacher observed the girl’s personality was more open and she was less likely to get angry at the other students. She explained this most likely did not have anything to do with her father purchasing the kindergarten.
An interview with the new owner of the kindergarten
The reporter managed to interview the dad about his purchase and asked him a few questions.
Reporter: When you were trying to give your daughter a good learning environment, what were you thinking when you decided to buy the kindergarten?
Dad: I’m a father, so my daughter is my life. I let her go to other kindergartens but they weren’t very good for her, I looked at many kindergartens, but none of them were very good in all the aspects I was looking at.
Reporter: Even if you found an okay kindergarten, why wouldn’t you have let your daughter go to a kindergarten like that?
Dad: At that time I just had some money sitting there, so I thought of this as an investment (laughs).
Reporter: If you don’t mind me asking, how much did you spend?
Dad: It was actually pretty cheap. I paid about 10 000 000 RMB ($1.6 million USD) for the 3000 square meter property and then spent some more money on upgrading some of the facilities.
Reporter: Does your daughter know you bought this kindergarten for her?
Dad: She probably knows, since she could understand what we were saying when I was purchasing the kindergarten. She probably doesn’t care because she’s so “naughty”.
Reporter: Do you think the way you have treated your daughter will provide more advantages than disadvantages for your daughter or vice versa?
Dad: I think we should just see what happens. We didn’t try to deliberately give her an advantage because our family had money. We decided, with the kindergarten teachers we had a clear vision and we wanted to ensure all of the kids received equal treatment.
Reporter: If you have money in the future when your daughter goes to primary and middle school, would you purchase another school?
Dad: (laughs) I’m not that rich. I’ll let me daughter decide once she gets older.
Reactions from other parents
The reporter also asked other parents about their thoughts towards the situation and they said, “How could I not admire him?”
The reporter further asked, “You’re a parent at the kindergarten, seeing another parent with this much money would you admire him, be jealous or hate him?”
A parent gave out a sigh and said, “Some people are richer than others, how can I compare myself to them. Of course I admire them.”
This became the topic of discussion amongst some parents outside the kindergarten, with many of them saying they admire the father for having the ability to create a good learning environment, but also believe he is glorifying his wealth and status.
Some parents even believe decisions like this will affect the healthy development of the child. One father said adding teachers and facilities are good, but parents should be realistic about the things they do for their kids. Since he is an average person with financial limitations, there is no way he could compare himself to the owner of the school. He emphasized to his child he can’t compare how much money his family has with other kids in the kindergarten and believes buying things of this nature will have a negative effect on the child’s development.
An education expert Liu Yu thought from an educational perspective the father is making a contribution to society. He said, “It doesn’t matter if you’re the boss of the kindergarten, you still have to adhere to education principles to do things, especially when it comes to kindergarten education. People shouldn’t be surprised or think this is weird, because he is making a contribution to society.”
“He’s doing it for his daughter, but at the same time, he’s providing a higher level of education for society. Obviously he’s different than many parents, but as long as he’s not treating his daughter in a special way, the kid will not become spoiled.” said Liu Yu.