2019 is a milestone marking the 15th year of Vietnam Australia International School (VAS) with many innovations. Founded as a kindergarten and early years programme, VAS has grown into a large-scale educational organisation with 8 campuses in Ho Chi Minh City, and more than 8,500 students enrolled from kindergarten to secondary.

Having learned from challenges and keeping focused on the goal of long term and sustainable development with effective education programmes, VAS is day by day improving to constantly provide the best value for its students and faculty. We have joined Mr. Marcel van Miert, Executive Chairman of VAS, who highlighted the organisation’s achievements.

As we’re talking about the 15-year journey of Vietnam Australia International School’s development, can you share your thoughts on what were the most salient factors that bring continued success to the organisation?

In my role over the last few years, managing an educational system, I think the fact that VAS is bringing true value to students through its on-track orientations, with education as its sole expertise, is the most significant achievement. People always are the most important factor in the development of an organisation. VAS has assembled one of the best teams I have ever worked with. My colleagues learn quickly and adapt their knowledge and expertise effectively to the international standards at VAS.

As a career business person, I highly value the benefits to students, teachers and parents, while balancing them with our business goals. Therefore, VAS takes its profits and continuously re-invests in developing educational programmes, training our people, adding more resources, recruiting international education experts to improve the ways of management and operation, and striving to elevate the profession generally. As a result, the value to the community has increased and is visibly shown through parents’ satisfaction and pro-active co-operation with the school, through the outstanding achievements of VAS’ students nationally and internationally; and also through faculty’s tenure.

There have been opinions saying VAS’ education model is considered a “role model” by many education units, what are your thoughts on this?

Allow me to call VAS’ model a pioneer. Since the starting years, VAS has already built a high-quality education model combined with top-notch client service; it was our stepping stone to bring this model into the market, satisfying the needs of families with average to high incomes. We researched, built life skills and values programmes almost 10 years ago and brought them into teaching, along with the main curriculum. From the years 2014 to 2015, VAS was once again the pioneer in executing the International Cambridge Education Program in parallel with the National Education Programme through all levels in Ho Chi Minh City. And next was our first-in-Vietnam Education Based Core Values Programs.

In 2018, VAS officially brought a complete International Cambridge Education Programme into teaching in selected campuses, thus becoming the only organisation with complete and full education routes that meet all students’ learning requirements. VAS’ model constantly innovates and develops by responding to changes in the world and international education trends. We hope that VAS setting high standards in education, management and operation will contribute in raising the bar for the international education system in Viet Nam in general.

I’m glad to know that VAS’ approach is considered a role model. I think it’s a positive sign that this system can be applied broadly because it means that other students will also receive similar benefits.

VAS once delivered an impressive message about children’s future is VAS’s mission, what is the current status?

Not only is it a message, but also a criterion for every educational activity at VAS. When a student’s future is put first, they become integral to the root of VAS’ development. Our vision and mission were built on the trust that the ultimate goal of education is to bring happiness to the people. The increasingly high results of VAS students are a partial success. The biggest motivation of VAS faculty, who have shown deep attachment to the education profession, is seeing clearly how students improve and grow in their own ways, with solid values.

We are progressively developing VAS into a learning environment of the future. We prepare students with the necessary skills to pursue academic achievements, as well as future careers in many countries in the world. I also want to emphasise that VAS is a place for your children, ours as well, to learn and to carry out daily life’s activities. Before they become “global citizens” we hope that they first can become decent people, a source of inspiration for good values, and be able to pass it on to people around them. That mindset is the moral compass for every activity of VAS.  


Can you tell us the next journey for VAS? What challenges will be expected?

First, we hope to expand the Cambridge 100% International Programme to other campuses to meet the increasingly high demands of current VAS students as well as other students in the city. It is within our 5-year plan of development that VAS will continue to expand the campuses and bring the high-quality international education model to other families in other cities.

For community activities within our expertise, we have plans to develop the Training and Career Nurturing Center for Cambridge Assessment International Education (CAIE) in order to improve the teaching quality of CAIE programmes in Viet Nam.

Perhaps the biggest challenge is to exceed VAS’s already great successes, making the impossible possible. VAS is no longer competing against other organisations, but ourselves! There are projects and programmes we’re building for students and parents as well in the upcoming yeas. We believe that the team’s efforts will increasingly bring more good value to impact society.

Vietnam Australia International School (VAS), founded in 2004, is currently the only organisation providing a complete learning pathway suitable for each student’s needs:

  • Pathway 1: Cambridge 100% International Education Programme (Grade 9-12)
  • Pathway 2: Cambridge International Education Programme, combining with National Educational Programme.
  • Pathway 3: Cambridge Advanced English Programme, combining with National Educational Programme.

Students enrolling in Cambridge International Education Programme (Pathway 1 & 2) will graduate with a Cambridge IGCSE and AS & A-Level, given by Cambridge Assessment Council. The Qualification is recognised worldwide and is also a ticket for students who wish to apply for top Universities in countries such as England, America, Australia, Canada, Singapore, the Netherlands, and New Zealand. Many American Universities have given credits for first year’s subjects to students who achieved good results in A-Level programme.