I have several friends who were teachers in North America (NA) and UK who are now teachers in China and NE Asia. All have been astonished by the level of respect accorded to teachers... and even uni students. To be educated is to be human. Of course this is a sweeping generalization, but in NA and UK the students abuse the teachers and schools. Not only do they study more, but in Asia students also perform janitorial duty by actually sweeping and mopping their classrooms and picking up the litter from the school yard. If you're responsible for cleaning it you're less inclined to vandalize it. Asia ain't perfect, but the appreciation for education is genuine.
Yeh, the school is always immaculate. Students are cleaning the windows and everything. Although sometimes I do think the students are doing too much, school day starts at 6.30, lessons start at 7.30, day finishes 21.30 after evening self study, 6 days a week, Monday to Saturday, 3 hour lunch break though. I'm sure the whole curriculum aimed at getting good results in exams.
Bad eyesight can real problem for many students in China though. I've just completed a 4 week English summer camp at another middle school in a neighbouring town. A couple of the students just couldn't see and read my Powerpoints and blackboard, even though they sat near the front.
The school has just completed a massive redecoration and refurbishment this summer, inside and out, ready for their diamond anniversary (60 years) next year. It's actually a Mongolian school, with mainly Mongolian rather than Han students. So I'm sure that means special status and real money is spent on the school, same seems to go for other state schools in Xilinhot and Inner Mongolia. I've visited other state schools in Hebei, Guangdong and Zhejiang provinces, and some of them are just horrible, nothing works, student punctually is very poor, etc. I had a couple of American friends come to visit last year, who'd been teaching at a Hebei middle school, They were actually shocked when they saw my school, "This school is beautiful!"...one of them said.