Hangzhou Foreign Language School

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Hangzhou Foreign Languages School
No. 309 Liuhe Road[1]
Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China
Coordinates 30°13′19″N 120°02′01″E / 30.22194°N 120.03361°E / 30.22194; 120.03361Coordinates: 30°13′19″N 120°02′01″E / 30.22194°N 120.03361°E / 30.22194; 120.03361
Type Public High School
Motto Study for the motherland, get prepared for the future.
Established 1964 (1964)
School district Xihu
Principal Dr. Fang Jianwen
Faculty 330
Number of students 2000
Nickname HFLS
The Information Centre of HFLS.

Hangzhou Foreign Languages School, also known as HFLS or 杭州外国语学校(杭外) founded in 1964. Hangzhou Foreign Languages School is one of the eight earliest foreign language schools in China. Entitled by the Ministry of Education, 20% of the graduates are admitted by top universities in China without taking the National Higher Education Entrance Examination. [2] In a 2016 ranking of Chinese high schools that send students to study in American universities, Hangzhou Foreign Language School ranked number 25 in mainland China in terms of the number of students entering top American universities.[3][4]


In 1963, the shortage of foreign talents made the new Republic adopt special policies to train them, in which case Hangzhou Foreign Languages School was established with other 7 foreign language school in Shanghai, Beijing, Changchun, Nanjing, Xi'an, Chongqing and Wuhan.

In 1964, primary school department of HFLS was established, located in the campus of Zhejiang Infant Normal School; middle school department was located in the site of the former Affiliated Middle School of Hangzhou University, or today's Xuejun Middle School. In 1966, the two departments merged and moved into Zhejiang Infant Normal School. As Cultural Revolution began in 1966, the school stopped recruiting students and students inside the campus left school successively after 1969. Students in primary school department transferred to other nearby schools. All middle school students joined the "Down to the Countryside Movement". Almost all teachers except English teachers were asked to leave.


Hangzhou Foreign Languages School had been the only school allowed to conduct entrance exams for elementary school graduates in Zhejiang Province. During the 1990s, the elementary schools in Hangzhou (capital of Zhejiang Province) were given a quota of one student for each class, normally the top student. Together with students recommended for their special talents in arts and music, around 1,000 students in the city sat the written exams of Mathematics and Chinese, after which around 100 students were qualified for second stage interviews and 80 students aged around 13 to 14 were finally admitted, forming 2 classes in entering the grade of Junior One. [5]

Due to the pressure from other secondary schools, the entrance exams of Hangzhou Foreign Language School evolved towards the form of pure interviews after 2000. The candidates pool was extended to all elementary schools in Zhejiang Province while both the candidates quota and number of admissions expanded, recruiting 11 to 12 classes each year.

In 2009, the Department of Education of Zhejiang announced that the school will become an affiliate of the then newly established Zhejiang International Studies University, which caused the school to stop conducting entrance interviews. The decision of affiliation was later revoked in react to the dissatisfaction from students and several faculties, [6] but the school continued to have a random process in choosing the students instead of carrying out interviews.


Graduates of the school prepare the students for the National Higher Education Entrance Examination as most high schools in China. They also cooperates with other foreign schools including both high schools and undergraduate colleges to provide further opportunities for students.

In 2009, some of the graduates established an association in order to maintain the close relationship between alumni. [7]



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