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Foreign-invested schools lack rules

Update: November, 19/2013 - 10:01
There are about 50 foreign-invested schools in the city, half the total nationwide, according to the Department. During the 2012-13 academic year, they attracted 12,000 students, nearly 5,000 of them Vietnamese.— Photo afamily

HCM CITY  (VNS) — Foreign-invested high schools are winning over more and more parents in HCM City, offering perks like field trips and well-equipped classrooms with about 20-25 students per class.

However, the lack of a comprehensive legal framework for this kind of educational institute makes it difficult for authorities to ensure that students are getting what they are advertised.

The assessment was made by deputy director of the municipal Department of Education and Training Nguyen Hoai Chuong.

There are about 50 foreign-invested schools in the city, half the total nationwide, according to the Department. During the 2012-13 academic year, they attracted 12,000 students, nearly 5,000 of them Vietnamese.

The schools charge significantly higher tuition fees than local institutions, with preschool tuition of US$3,000-11,500, primary school tuition of $6,000-14,000 and high school tuition as high as $20,000.

However, while many schools use the term "foreign-invested school" to attract more students, they fail to provide the quality education and facilities that the name and price tag imply.

According to Chuong, poor teaching facilities and teachers who paid little attention to compulsory subjects such as Literature and History were common.

However, there is no criteria for evaluating the schools' performance due to their foreign-invested status.

Cao Huy Thao, principal of the Viet Nam-Australia English School, said that inspectors had visited the school but felt confused, as there was no legal document guiding the inspection of schools that used both international and Vietnamese curricula.

Director of the department Le Hong Son said that the department had worked with the Education Research Institute of HCM City University of Education to create a set of criteria that it would submit to the ministry in the future. — VNS

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