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China Exam System Drives Student Suicides

Students review for the national college entrance exams at No. 1 Middle School of Handan City, north China's Hebei Province, on May 12, 2014.
Students review for the national college entrance exams at No. 1 Middle School of Handan City, north China's Hebei Province, on May 12, 2014. Photograph by Hao Qunying/Xinhua Press/Corbis

China’s high-pressure high school and college examination system is contributing to a wave of student suicides, warns a study released Tuesday by the Beijing-based nonprofit 21st Century Education Research Institute.

The Annual Report on China’s Education (2014), also known as the Blue Book of Education, looked at the apparent causes of 79 suicides by elementary and high school students last year, reports the China Daily on May 14. It found that just under 93 percent happened after arguments with teachers or were attributed to the intense pressure to study put on young people.