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How can private tutoring in Vietnam be better managed?

The Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) has proposed listing private tutoring as a conditional business field, but experts think this will not be a good solution.

Nguyen Thu Hang, a parent in Hanoi whose son goes to a secondary school in Cau Giay district, said the mathematics teacher of her son is present at all parents’ meetings, where he always complains about students’ learning capacity.

 

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“The students in this class are very bad at math. I am afraid they will fail the entrance exams to state-owned high schools,” he said.

After hearing the teacher’s repeated ‘presentations’, Hang and other parents realized that the teacher wants the students in the class to attend his extra classes. If they don’t, they may ‘fail the entrance exams to state-owned high school’.

According to Hang, some parents unwillingly send children to the teacher’s extra classes, because they fear the teacher will victimize the students who don’t go.

Going to extra classes for fear of persecution is what many students throughout the country are doing.

Parents have repeatedly called on MOET to prohibit private tutoring, saying that school hours are enough for students. Paying fees for extra classes is a burden for many families.

In order to put private tutoring under strict control, MOET released Circular 17 which says teachers have to register for their extra classes. At the beginning of new academic year, teachers are asked to promise that they won’t break regulations.

However, some experts warn that prohibiting private tutoring would be an extreme action, saying that many students have real demand for private tutoring.

In order to put private tutoring under strict control, MOET released Circular 17 which says teachers have to register for their extra classes. At the beginning of new academic year, teachers are asked to promise that they won’t break regulations. However, the management agency still cannot put everything under its control.

In the latest move, MOET proposed that the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) add private tutoring to the list of conditional business fields. However, the solution remains controversial.

Nguyen Quoc Binh, headmaster of Le Quy Don Secondary and High School, agrees that private tutoring is a real demand and the service should not be prohibited.

However, he believes that teachers at general schools should not be allowed to give private tutoring. This is the job of learning centers, where teachers are not from general schools, but are freelance teachers. In this case, students would have no fear of persecution.

Nguyen Quoc Vuong, an education expert, also thinks that it is necessary to exclude extra teaching from general schools’ functions. Teachers may be absorbed in teaching extra classes for money and spend less time on official school hours, and may show discriminatory treatment to students who don’t attend extra classes.

Thanh Lich 

 

Will private tutoring be considered a conditional business in Vietnam?

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