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‘Secret code’: smart China boy uses ‘hanging bag’ trick to catch school bus

People & CultureTrending in China

‘Secret code’: rural China boy hangs school bag on door as honk-horn signal to driver to avoid missing bus for 30km commute to lessons

Mother who works far away in city spots secret signal when she views footage from surveillance camera installed at countryside homeMillions of so-called ‘left-behind children’ populate China’s rural areas as parents move to live and work in citiesTrending in ChinaFran Luin BeijingPublished: 6:00pm, 19 Sep, 2023Why you can trust SCMP

The story of a boy in rural China who shares a “secret code” with a kind-hearted bus driver to make sure he does not miss his 30km (18 mile) ride to school has captivated mainland social media.

Chen Shifei is a so-called “left behind child” Secondary Three student who lives in a village in southwestern China’s mountainous Chongqing municipality.

The term “left-behind child” refers to those who remain in rural regions while their parents live and work in the country’s urban centres.

Chen commutes 30km to school from his home in the Wanzhou district every week.

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