Education in the Nyingchi area began with the modernization of education in Tibet. Historically, this mountainous area had no schools except for those in temples. After the peaceful liberation in 1951, Tibet began to build schools. Before 1959, there were ten schools, with 348 students. After the democratic reform in 1959, the number increased to 21, including four middle schools. Since the 1980s, education in the Nyingchi area has developed into a full-fledged system. Now there are 315 primary schools,12 middle schools and 5 kindergartens,with 18,886 students. The attendance of school-age children at these schools has reached 85.6 percent, 18.6 percent higher than a decade ago.
In 1989, a special school was established in Nyingchi for children from Moinba, Lhoba and other minority groups. This school was named Nyingchi Minority Group School of Tibet. The first 207 students were from Moinba, Lhoba, Naxi, Nu, Tibetan Deng and Sharba minority groups in the bordering counties of Tibet. Their food, clothing, boarding and transportation were paid by the State. Now this school has over 70 staff members and 14 classes.Because the ages of the students are higher than
normal,the school has started vocational courses so that the students can work after graduation.
There is also a college, Tibetan Agriculture and Husbandry College, in Nyingchi, which was founded in 1978, based on the Nyingchi Campus of the Tibetan Nationality College. During the first decade after its founding, the state invested over 60 million RMB. To train the teachers and improve the teaching standards, nearly 100 teachers from over 20 colleges of other provinces have been worked here. Now the college has four departments: Agriculture, Husbandry and Veterinary Science, Forestry Science and Hydroelectricity, which cover five specialties: Agriculture, Husbandry, Veterinary Science, Forestry Science, and Electric Power System and Automation. The college also has a Basic Knowledge Department, Cadres' Training Department and Research Institute of Highland Ecology.
The Tibetan Nationality College is larger, covering an area of 100 hectares, the floor space of the school buildings being 53,000 square meters. It has an audio-visual education center and 33 laboratories, as well as a farm, pasture, forestry center, nursery, orchard, machinery, and electronics factory and power station _ all for teaching purposes. The college also has a well-equipped computer center. The audio-visual education center relays programs from Tibetan TV, China Central TV and Central Education TV. The library has a floor space of 4,000 square meters, with a collection of over 300,000 books and nearly 1,000 periodicals. Since its founding 20 years ago, the college has produced nearly 5,000 graduates, contributing significantly to agricultural and husbandry development in Tibet.
The development of education in the Nyingchi area has resulted in an increase in the local people's educational level. Before 1959, the illiteracy rate in Nyingchi was 98 percent; now it has been reduced to 70 percent, and in some villages the rate is 60 percent. In seats of government departments, the rates range from 5 to 10 percent.