The Chinese child who was dubbed “Ice Boy” after photos were shared to social media of him arriving at school in Yunnan with rosy cheeks, swollen feet and frosted hair, has been thrown out of his new private school.
Video of Wang Fuman, an 8-year-old student at Zhuangshanbao primary school, vent viral and sparked poverty debates across China. The video was posted by his principal in Ludian County and showed Wang arriving to school in a thin jacket after walking an hour in -15F weather.
After Wang went viral for trekking 2.8 miles in freezing conditions, the headmaster of Xinhua Schoolin the Yunnan town of Zhaotong, offered him a free place at the private boarding institution.
But on Tuesday, only a week after Wang started, Wang was thrown out of Xinhua Schoolin and is now going back to state school.
Headmaster Yang explained to Wang Gangkui, the 8-year-old’s father, that he originally wanted to “do some good” for the poverty-stricken boy but have since decided he can no longer stand the media attention.
"At first, I didn't know... but later, I found out that Fuman had been identified by the Ministry of Education as a key figure to be helped in the government's poverty alleviation efforts," Yang told the South China Morning Post.
He added, "As a result, during these days of having him in my school, we received numerous requests from various levels of government departments to inspect us. Many media outlets also insisted on interviewing us. It was impossible for me to reject many of these requests. This was not what I wanted, so I had to tell Fuman's father to take the boy back to his original school."
As a consolation, Yang gave Wang’s father $2,365 and promised he would help them if they encountered any problems in the future.
Wang was disappointed at the decision and told the Post on Wednesday that he really liked his new school.
“The teachers taught better than those at Zhuanshanbao Primary School. Pupils don’t talk in class and everyone is focused on studying. I lived there and didn’t need to walk a long way to get to school. I only needed to join running exercises every morning,” he said.
“I ate better, too. Unlike at home, when my granny is busy, my sister and I need to find food for ourselves... because we don’t know how to cook, we just boil potatoes, but at Xinhua school I ate so many different things,” Wang added.