Planet China

Paternity test

Plenty of adults awake in a cold sweat after nightmares of being back at school, flunking their exams.

So spare a thought for the fathers of a primary school class in Fujian province, who took an exam alongside their children last month.

Fifty men from Xiamen sat down for the test, answering questions on Chinese, mathematics and English. The results were underwhelming, with an average grade of 66 out of 100. None of the men got full marks and the dunce in the class scored just seven.

“Many of the dads gave embarrassed smiles, saying that they had forgotten a lot of the answers. Their kids didn’t say much in response, although some looked away and smirked,” news portal Sina reported (one reason the school asked the dads to sit the exam is because Chinese parents routinely put unrealistic pressure on their offspring to score close to 100 points in tests).

Sina wasn’t too critical of the results, saying that the fathers hadn’t been to school for years, so it was no real surprise that they had forgotten how to recite ancient poems or write in Pinyin. But there was more discussion of another part of the test in which the men had been asked about the lives and interests of their children. Netizens were soon pointing out that those with lower scores were the dads not putting in enough time with their kids.

“I honestly don’t have enough time to spend with my child,” one man later admitted to Toutiao News.

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