Mao resorted to publicly belittling the academy. The last thing President Xi wants is to belittle Chinese universities, considering that he and his predecessors have worked so hard to build international stature for the institutions.
The first time I tried to learn French, my mother signed me up for a high school correspondence course. I remember cassette tapes, quizzes that were supposed to be proctored, and a family friend and native French speaker who was horrified I couldn’t conjugate basic verbs. I didn’t finish the course.