Mountain-top village of only 100 residents is cut off from the outside world, apart from ladders leading to valley below
Brave schoolchildren use the wooden ladders with no safety precautions to get to school every day
Five-year-old Liu Dan explained: ‘It’s quite high but I try not to look down’
These schoolchildren in southern China are so keen to get to school that they make the perilous journey on narrow wooden ladders every day, with no safety precautions.
Their village in the remote Badagong mountains in Sangzhi county is surrounded by sheer drops on every side, making the school run a daily struggle.
The only way out of Zhang Jiawan village, unless the children have time for a four-hour cross country detour, is via a series of rickety-looking ladders leading down to the valley below.
Their anxious parents have no choice but to let them use the ladders if they want to get an education.
So when youngsters like five-year-old Liu Dan start school at the nearest town, the first thing they have to learn is how to climb.
‘In centuries past these mountains were a fortress for the villagers. The land is good and the farms thrive but it is hard to get in and out,’ said one local.
Liu admitted: ‘It’s quite high but I try not to look down.’
‘My parents showed me how to do it safely and now I don’t think too much about how high it is,’ she added.
Villagers have asked local officials to supply a road down to the valley so that these children do not have to risk their lilves.
However, the road over the difficult terrain would cost nearly £10 million so residents are not getting their hopes up that it will happen any time soon.