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Students Back to Class in Temporary Schools in Quake-hit City

More than 70,000 primary and middle school students resumed classes in temporary schools on Monday in Dujiangyan City, six weeks after the devastating Sichuan earthquake.

The five-star national flag was hoisted at the Wanchuan Middle School as 7,000 students and teachers observed the routine of a Chinese school day.

"The temporary school was built within 17 days to allow classes to resume for the students and teachers from six schools, which were toppled in the massive earthquake," said Liu Junlin, Communist Party chief of Dujiangyan, who attended the opening ceremony.

Liu said that Wanchuan is the biggest of the 45 temporary schools built after the earthquake, which together could accommodate all the students of the 92 schools in Dujiangyan before the earthquake. The city was among the worst hit areas in the disaster.

The largest temporary school in Dujiangyan has its origin in its name of "Wanchuan", as the character "Wan" stands for Anhui Province and "Chuan" for the quake-ravaged Sichuan Province.

The 45 temporary schools in Dujiangyan City were built with 110 million yuan (US$16 million) in donations from the east China province of Anhui, which also contributed lesson materials.

"We will continue to help with the reconstruction work in Dujiangyan," said Sun Jinlong, a representative of the city government of Hefei, the provincial capital of Anhui.

(Xinhua News Agency June 24, 2008)

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