Nanjing Foreign Language School

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Nanjing Foreign Language School
Logo of Nanjing Foreign Language School.jpg
#30 Beijing East Rd
Nanjing, Jiangsu
Coordinates 32°03′30″N 118°47′47″E / 32.05833°N 118.79639°E / 32.05833; 118.79639Coordinates: 32°03′30″N 118°47′47″E / 32.05833°N 118.79639°E / 32.05833; 118.79639
Type Public

Chinese Soul, Global Vision.[2] (中国灵魂、世界胸怀)

Seek the truth, scale the height, be erudite and be modest.[3] (求实、奋进、博学、谦逊)
Established 1963
Number of students 2828 (2009 Feb.9, Main Campus)[1]

Nanjing Foreign Language School, (NFLS, Chinese: 南京外国语学校, or Nan-Wai (南外) for short), is a middle and high school located in Nanjing, Jiangsu, People's Republic of China. In China, it is one of the seven oldest Foreign Language Schools, which were established during 1963-1964 under the supervision of Premier Zhou Enlai[4] . Nanjing Foreign Language School is widely recognized as one of the best middle/high schools in China[5] , especially for its tradition of feeding talents to prestigious universities in China and abroad[6] . Liberal arts education flourishes here, nurturing well-developed and competitive students[7] . In a 2016 ranking of Chinese high schools that send students to study in American universities, Nanjing Foreign Language School ranked number 13 in mainland China in terms of the number of students entering top American universities.[8][9]

NFLS alumni refer to themselves as NFLSers (南外人).

Nanjing Foreign Language School consists of a three-year high school and a three-year middle school. There are three international programs at NFLS; including the International Baccalaureate, Cambridge International A-Level, and BCA program. Elementary graduates from Nanjing usually apply to its junior middle school by taking a series of examinations.[10] The form of the examinations is usually in a flux due to government policies varying from year to year[citation needed]. The focus of the examinations, however, is always students' academic skills on Chinese, English, and Mathematics. There are also exams that test students' study ability.

After three years of study in the middle school, students usually take part in the standardized high schools entrance tests in Nanjing and a special school-held qualification test. Qualified middle school graduates will continue their high school studies in the high school.

Nanjing Foreign Language School employs the standard education system of Jiangsu Province in disciplines other than foreign languages. Due to the fact that most student need to prepare for either Baosong test or SAT test, the pace in the first two high school years are accelerated. In its foreign language education students may select one from English, German, French, or Japanese as their major language of concentration. The latter three languages are usually not offered at Chinese middle schools or high schools. In addition, the English education is more intensive. The classes are conducted by local and foreign teachers with overseas language textbooks. Students at NFLS therefore attain a high level of foreign language skill upon graduation.

The principal of the school (As of 2015) is Mr. Zou Zheng.

Nanjing Foreign Language School has provided A-Level courses since 2006. It also has a program working with most of the 20 top universities in Australia and another program with some top 20 universities in Canada. Now NFLSers are studying or living in over 30 countries.[11]


Nanjing Foreign Language School is widely recognized as one of the best middle/high schools in China, especially for its tradition of feeding talents to prestigious universities in China and abroad. Therefore, admission to NFLS is highly competitive.[12]

Junior Middle School admissions[edit]

Before 1998, the school admission process involved two rounds of competition each year. In the first round, pupils compete within their resident districts of the city, and then about 1000 of them in total were selected for the next round. The chosen applicants were required to take an entrance exam to test their verbal and math skills. Only 200 top candidates could be admitted.

From 1998 to 2002, the first round of competition was abolished, because it was considered to be unfair for students in different city districts.[specify] Therefore, pupils who were going to graduate could freely sign up for the entrance exam. The response was overwhelming with thousands of pupils eagerly joining the competition each year. In 2002, the number of applicants was more than 10,000. Around 150 students was selected for admission with full financial aid, with another 150 selected for partial aid or self-sponsored enrollment.

Recruitment of top students in such a large scale for a high school was unprecedented in Nanjing, and residents in Nanjing gradually formed a habit of judging the quality of an elementary school by looking at how many of its students could be admitted to NFLS, which sparked a high degree of controversy.[specify] For a long time, elementary school teachers and some parents were being criticized for placing too much pressure on students, and the fierce competition for entering NFLS obviously made the situation worse. Furthermore, other top high schools contending for talented students complained about NFLS's unfair practice and accused the city's education council for being partial to NFLS.[specify]

In order to relive pupils' burden of taking exams, some people[who?] suggested that the number of students allowed to take the entrance exams of NFLS should be strictly limited, and each elementary school should recommend several students who had good performance not only in exams but also in extracurricular activities. However, this idea was considered to be unrealistic, because the selection criteria were too vague and impractical, and might easily cause unfairness for schools and individual pupils.[specify]

In 2003, an even more controversial admission policy was carried out.[specify] Since 2003, the school is still allowed for citywide recruitment, but with an additional preliminary random allocation procedure executed by a computer.

For instance, assume for year 2009 the number of applicants is 4,000 and the number of planned admits is 300, then only 300*8=2400 applicants are actually allowed to proceed to take the entrance exam, always multiplied by a factor of 8. The 2,400 candidates would be randomly selected among the 4,000 applicants by a computer algorithm, with high degree of public supervision. This new policy destroyed the decision power of exams, and allowed more room for other schools to select good students, but aroused serious arguments concerning the fairness for individual students.[13]

Senior High School admissions[edit]

Before 2003, the senior high school of NFLS only enrolled students from its own junior middle school, with a small number of elimination. Since 2003, students from other junior middle schools can also apply and compete for the entrance to NFLS, by taking the city's public exams and an additional English language test.

School societies[edit]

There are many societies.

  • Literature Society is the oldest among all campus societies. Each semester, it distributes its own magazine, Mirror, with articles submitted from students and faculty members across campus.
  • Photography Society is the largest society on campus. The members of the society have photography lessons together and go out taking photos.
  • NFLinguisticS, a linguistics club, organizes linguistics olympiad training and participates in China's National Linguistics Olympiad.
  • Philosophy Society (nickname House For The Mad) is the youngest society in the school and was the only one founded by Senior One students. The Philosophy Society has members from both junior and senior school, among whom there are twelve VIP members who take charge of the society. Every Friday, this newly found society organizes a philosophical salon. The society publishes a magazine annually.
  • Life Society is led by the Student Union of the school. It has a magazine that mostly depicts school life and organizes a sale of goods for charity every year.
  • Drama Show Club was founded in 2007 by three Senior Two students. With more than five hundred members from different grades, the club gives its members opportunities to perform on stage and to write plays.
  • News Agency reports events happening in the school. Almost all the reporters of the school newspaper are from this society.
  • Animation Club organizes a sale of toys from the students every year.
  • Go Club organizes training courses, prepares students for national competitions and holds activities like friendly matches between schools.
  • MUN organizes Model United Nations training.
  • Debate Society organizes English debate tournaments and weekly training using Asian-Pacific style debating formant.

International Centres[edit]

Aside from the main Chinese programme, NFLS also has three international courses; the British Columbia Academy (Canadian curriculum), the Cambridge International AS and A Level programme (British curriculum) and an International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. These three courses provide opportunities for students who wish further their studies at university abroad. NFLS has one of the best track records in China for getting its students accepted into top universities around the world.

Branch School[edit]

NFLS also has two branch schools. Nanjing Foreign Language School Xianlin Campus (Chinese: 南京外国语学校仙林分校, or Nan-Wai Xian-lin (南外仙林) for short)is located in Xianlin, an eastern suburb of Nanjing. The branch school consists of primary school, middle school and high school. And the primary school in Nanjing Foreign Language School Xianlin Campus is considered as one of the best primary schools in Nanjing.[14] Another branch school is called Nanjing Foreign Language School HeXi Campus (Chinese: 南京外国语学校河西分校, or Nan-Wai He-Xi (南外河西), which is located in Hexi, a western suburb in Nanjing. The branch school was founded just three years ago (in June 2012), so it is just a three-year middle school. The first group of NFLSHXCers will graduate in June 2015.[15]

Pop video[edit]

Days on the Beijing East Road (北京东路的日子) is a pop music song and video—Dedicated to Nanjing Foreign Language School. The song was spread around the Internet overnight because of its moving lyrics and beautiful melody. It was played on CCTV, China Central Television, other provincial channels, and recommended as the Best Original Song on video websites.[who?] Wang Yuan, an alumnus of Nanjing Foreign Language School and a current freshman at the Johns Hopkins University, wrote the song and planned the music video.[16]

Sister Schools[edit]

Hangzhou Foreign Language School: Official website

See also[edit]

External links[edit]