Teachers dream of “Tet bonus”
  • | VietnamNet | December 29, 2011 06:00 AM

While office and business workers have been anxious these days to know how much they will get for Tet bonuses, teachers say Tet bonus proves to be an “abstract dream” for them.

Nguyen Thi Dung, Headmaster of the Kim Son Secondary School in Gia Lam district of Hanoi, said that the word “Tet bonus” is not true for teachers, while what they receive should be called “the small year-end gifts.”

“We anticipate that the year-end gifts would be the very small sums of money that we would feel self-pity when receiving,” Dung said.

The state budget does not allocate any spending items for Tet bonus for teachers. The “year end gifts” for teachers would be sourced from the budget for regularly expenses that schools can save. Dung said that in the last two years, every teacher got VND700,000 (USD33), and the same gift is expected to be awarded to them this year for their devotion to the education.

Bui Kim Thuy, Headmaster of the Hoang Hoa Tham Primary School in Ba Dinh district of Hanoi, said that the teachers of the schools call the sums of money the receive the “Tet allowance”. It is expected that every of them would receive VND500,000 (USD23.8) in Tet allowance, the same with the previous year.

Phung Thi Tinh, Headmaster of the Cam Linh Secondary School in Ba Vi district, simply said: “Where to arrange money for Tet bonuses?” The teachers of the school have been leading poor lives, because they do not have extra income from private tutoring or any other extra income. Meanwhile, they always have to persuade students to go to school and not to drop out.

Tinh said in 2010, every teacher was awarded VND200,000 (USD9.5) from the school, and another sum of VND100,000, which was the gift from the student parents’ association.

The schools in the suburbs of HCM City say the concepts “Tet bonus” or “the 13th month salary” have never been existing for them. While the schools in inner city can save money in spending to award their teachers, the schools in the suburb areas cannot. Therefore, poor teachers always have “poor Tet celebrations.”

Vo Thi Truc Mai, a teacher of the Binh Khanh Nursery School in Can Gio District, complained that the school’s leaders have informed that there would be no Tet bonus this year, because the school has spent all of its money to upgrade the material facilities.

Meanwhile, the teachers in Quang Ngai province say they would feel happy with the modest Tet bonus of VND100,000, because they know they are happier than others, who never receive Tet bonuses.

When asked about the expected Tet bonuses, Nguyen Tra, Headmaster of the Tra Nhung Primary School in Tay Tra district, smiled and said: “I have never heard about Tet bonuses and Tet gifts over the last eight years, since I began working for the school in the mountainous area.”

“In 2010, we heard that we would get Tet bonus, which made us excited. However, the Tet bonus did not come. Only in September 2011, we got VND100,000 which was explained as the Tet bonus, which we should have not got February,” he said.

According to Tra, in order to have money to give Tet bonuses, schools need to have a lot of funds with the money collected from different sources. However, in mountainous areas, such funds cannot exist.

Tra is not alone. All other teachers in the Tay Tra district and other mountainous districts of Quang Ngai province are facing the same situation.

Tran Kim Mau, a teacher in Quang Ngai City, said that he has returned from the trip to the home village to carry rice to the mountain place. The rice would feed them when he teaches for the Ba Le Secondary School in Ba To district.

Leave your comment on this story