CHINA - China's education and healthcare authorities have kicked off a campaign to inspect kindergartens, primary schools and high schools nationwide to see whether students have been given illegal medical treatment or unsafe food.
The inspection, which will run through April 10, was announced on Tuesday by the Ministry of Education and the National Health and Family Planning Commission. It comes in the wake of news that some kindergartens in Hubei, Shaanxi and Jilin provinces illegally administered prescription drugs to children.
The kindergartens were accused of giving children moroxydine, a drug that fights the flu virus, without informing their parents.
Adding to concerns, two children died on Wednesday of rat poison at a private kindergarten in Yunnan province.
Zhang Jianrong, associate professor at Shaanxi Police Professional College, said the administration of unauthorized medicine to thousands of children, if true, violated criminal laws prohibiting the endangerment of public safety.
Two kindergarten owners in Yichang, Hubei province, were arrested; five suspects were arrested in Jilin.
On Wednesday, Premier Li Keqiang called for tighter management of schools to prevent similar cases in the future.
In Guangzhou, Guangdong province, 76 percent of the 1,601 kindergartens are supported by private funds, according to the city's education bureau.