Millions of migrant workers who travel to work in China's richest cities are increasingly raising their voices in protest over discriminatory practices by local schools, using legal channels to argue that their children should be able to come along too. China's migrant workers are stuck with an unenviable choice; leave their children behind when they go where the work is, or take them along and risk disrupting their education.
Cheng Hai, a rights lawyer who has supported migrant parents' campaign for equal access to schooling, said China's own laws require schools to offer education to all children. "In our country, primary school education is compulsory education," Cheng told RFA. "Therefore, compulsory education must also be unconditional in terms of the place of residence of children who follow their parents [outside their hometown]."