Students at Chi Lăng Primary School in HCM City's Gò Vấp District. — VNS Photo Gia Lộc
HCM CITY — HCM City will ensure that all school-aged children will be able to attend school and that first graders will study under the new training programme this year, Dương Anh Đức, deputy chairman of the city People’s Committee, said at a recent meeting with the Department of Education and Training and district people’s committees.
He made the statement to reassure the parents of more than 1,000 children in District 12 who are at a risk of not going to school because they have not yet been designated to enter any public school in the district. The families do not meet the demand of more than one-year residency in HCM City.
Đức instructed the department to provide assistance to schools to ensure that all children who are at the age for first grade to go to school as regulated by law.
A representative of District 12 People’s Committee said the number of first graders at public primary schools in the 2020-21 academic year will total 8,120. The number at private schools will be 320.
The district has 1,484 children who are first- grade age but have not been designated to enter any public primary school because there are not enough classrooms. To resolve the problem, the district will increase the number of students studying during the day to ensure that these students have classrooms, the representative said.
According to the district’s initial planning, each classroom would have 44 or 45 students. However, the number of classrooms will not be enough. So the district has decided to increase the number of students in each classroom to 50.
The district will not have new primary schools in the 2020-21 year.
Đức instructed other districts to review public invested projects on building new primary and secondary schools to ensure progress.
HCM City faces an increased population with many people coming from other provinces and cities in the country, while the Education Law requires better conditions for students, in which infrastructure development must be sped up to meet demand.
The land rate for the education sector is not enough under current regulations. He instructed the Department of Planning-Architecture to urge district people’s committees to increase their land planning for education.
The department should work with the Department of Education and Training and make new land plans.
The 2020-21 school year is the first to carry out the new training programme for first grade which requires students to study during the day and classrooms to have no more than 35 students. However, the increased population in districts has created a challenge to carry out these requirements.
According to the Department of Education and Training, six out of 24 districts do not have enough classrooms. The districts are 12, Gò Vấp, Tân Phú, Thủ Đức, Bình Tân and Bình Chánh.
Lê Hoài Nam, the department’s deputy head, said that the number of second-to fifth graders who study during the day will be reduced and that these classrooms will be used for first graders to study during the day.
In the long term, the city will have to build more schools, Nam said, adding that the city will have more policies to develop private schools and provide tuition assistance for poor students if they study in private schools.
Tạ Tân, head of Tân Phú District Educational Division, said the district has 7,097 first graders. To ensure classrooms for them, second to fifth grades will not study the whole day.
All children in the district will not be required to have either permanent or temporary residency books, he added.
In Bình Chánh District, first to fifth graders will study only half a day because of the high number of students. The district has 10,638 first graders this year.
HCM City will see an increase of 54,600 students in the 2020-21 school year, including more than 378,000 without permanent residency books. — VNS