With the expansion of productive forces and the prosperity of culture during the Zhou dynasty (1046-221 BC), more and more schools were established. During the Western Zhou dynasty (1046-771 BC) slave society was at its peak. Schools were divided into state schools and village schools.
State schools were established just for children of the nobility; and consisted of elementary schools and higher-level colleges. Village schools, also known as local schools, were divided into four levels: shu, xiang, xu and xiao. Generally speaking, students who studied well in shu could enter the next level and proceed upwards. If determined and persistent, they even stood a chance of studying in college.