At first glance, it is possible to think "Good grief, same old, same old..." what with all the usual claims about the impossibility of socialising a child in the great wide world, but actually it isn't hard to spot the differences between the situation in China and the UK. Most obvious and yet unexceptional of these is the extreme high-handedness of the Chinese authorities - something that is yet to be matched in this country.
"China's revised Compulsory Education Law, which came into effect this month, says carers of any school age child should send them to school for nine years of education... home education is absolutely not advocated," said an official involved in revising the law. "
All in all, and despite the impending invasion of the family by the state as a result of recent UK legislation, it makes one grateful for the British Liberal tradition. Those in the UK government, despite their preference for taking over people's lives, would never dare to express themselves like that, or be so draconian, for however much they would love to do just this, they know that they will be letting themselves in for trouble. The habitual urge to limit the powers to the state is way too ingrained in us.