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Ministry plans to merge vocational schools

Update: January, 16/2015 - 08:52
The Cam Lam District Vocational School which was designed to train 1,000 students each year but only managed to recruit 100 students. Some classes only had three students attending. — Photo baokhanhkhoa

HA NOI (VNS) — The Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs would ask its provincial agencies to evaluate and restructure vocational schools in order to improve their performance, said Duong Duc Lan, director general of the Vocational Training Directorate.

He said that the plan came from the fact that there were 500 vocational schools in the country including new facilities which were not equipped with standard curricula, equipment or teachers.

The ministry planned to merge groups of three to four schools in order to take advantage of their shared facilities and improve education standards, however, it would take years to complete the plan, he told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper.

Khanh Hoa Province had already piloted the plan, but a lack of support policies had inhibited its efforts, according to Le Xuan Than, vice chairman of the Khanh Hoa People's Committee.

He said that vocational education was ineffective due to poor management by provincial authorities that allowed numerous schools to be built with substandard facilities.

Than gave an example of Cam Lam District Vocational School which was designed to train 1,000 students each year but only managed to recruit 100 students. Some classes only had three students attending.

However, he said that the plan had not worked because the province had not received instructions from the Government, the Ministry of Education and Training and other related ministries.

He said the process had been too complicated and the People's Committee was unsure of how to rearrange staff at centres and schools.

A lack of students enrolling for vocational schools was also a problem for other provinces, including Dong Nai, as high-school students preferred to go to college or university.

According to the Dong Nai Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, 50 per cent of the 100,000 labourers needed by FDI firms and 45 per cent of the 40,000 labourers needed by private firms in the province must have vocational training degrees.

The Dong Nai Department of Education and Training wants to send 30 per cent of middle-school graduates to vocational schools in 2015.

However, 30,000 secondary students finish 9th grade and the same number of students apply for 10th grade each year in the province, meaning that no middle-school graduates are interested in going to vocational schools.

In addition, the province has 27,000 to 30,000 high-school graduates each year who send out 50,000 applications to universities and colleges nationwide, while only 5,000 high-school graduates including those coming from other provinces apply to vocational schools in Dong Nai each year. — VNS

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