A knifeman stabbed three children and a teacher to death and wounded five more pupils before killing himself in a rampage at a primary school in Hubei province yesterday, the latest deadly attack in the country against schoolchildren.
The attacker killed himself by jumping from a building following the carnage at a school at Shiyan, Xinhua and other media outlets reported.
The wounded pupils, two of whom were severely injured, were being treated at a local hospital, Xinhua added.
A female teacher, surnamed Liu, was stabbed in the chest and stomach and died of her injuries hours later, Xinhua said.
The authorities said the attack occurred at Dongfang primary school in Yunxi county.
The attacker was identified as Chen Yanfu, from the township of Anjia.
Chen entered a grade five class at about 10.20am and stabbed a female teacher and eight pupils with a fruit knife, local public security officials said.
Chen carried out the attack because the school refused to register his daughter for the new school year because she had failed to complete her homework, police said.
Yesterday was the first day of the new school year in many parts of the country.
Xinhua said it was not immediately known how Chen entered the campus, but state broadcaster China Central Television said Chen was allowed into the school after he said he went to register his daughter.
Security at many schools has been tightened following a spate of attacks on children in recent years. Those attacks include five incidents in 2010 that killed 17 people - 15 of them children - and wounded more than 80.
In March a man killed two relatives and then slashed 11 people, including six children, outside a school in Shanghai.
Earlier this summer, police in Qianjiang , also in Hubei, killed a man whom they believed was attempting to "take over" a primary school, state media reported.