TAIYUAN, Jan. 31 (Xinhua) -- Education authorities in a north China city on Tuesday banned schools and kindergartens from carrying out palm-reading tests that could allegedly tell a child's intelligence and professional aptitude.
"We have issued a circular to criticize the three kindergartens that offered palm-reading tests for 1,200 yuan (190 U.S. dollars) per person," said Ma Zhaoxing, education bureau chief in Taiyuan, capital of Shanxi Province.
Meanwhile, the education bureau has set up an investigation team to find out if the kindergarten management had been ripped off by the company that provided the palm-reading service, Shanxi Daomeng Culture Communication Co., Ltd., Ma said.
He said all the three kindergartens were privately-run.
Earlier in January, some parents in Taiyuan complained to Xinhua that they had been offered the test, which could allegedly help them find out their children's aptitudes in music, mathematics or languages, so as to cultivate these talents accordingly at an earlier age.
Though some parents eagerly took their children to the test, many others complained of the high costs and doubted if it was scientific or superstitious.
Mei Mingzhi, a company executive with Shanxi Daomeng, said the test could help determine a child's innate intelligence and potential and was applicable to all children aged over three months.
The test, however, was described as pseudoscience by Zhao Yulin, a family education specialist with Shanxi Academy of Social Sciences.
Zhao, who did some research work on palm-reading three years ago, said the test was originally based on genetics and the multi-intelligence theory, but had apparently gone beyond science and could be misleading.