Private schools oppose full three-month summer holiday
  • | | July 13, 2020 03:22 PM
Private schools complain that they may not be able to stay in business as the Ministry of Education mulls over a new regulation that lets students take a full 3-month summer holiday, with schools not allowed to open during this time.


Having longer summer holiday will give children more time with family and other activities

The Ministry of Education and Training announced that they are planning to issue a regulation stipulating that Vietnam's new school year will start on September 5. The earliest date to gather the students to prepare the new school year is September 1 and no school would be allowed to start the curriculum before then.

For private schools, the ministry will adjust the Circular 13 which stipulates the operational regulations of primary, secondary and high schools. Even though it's unclear what the adjustments will be, many private schools have expressed concern and confusion at the news.

Nguyen Xuan Khang, head of Marie Curie Secondary School and High School, said the Covid-19 pandemic had put many schools on the verge of bankruptcy and they had struggled to maintain business. If the three-month summer holiday policy is applied, teachers will not have salaries for the whole three months. Therefore, Khang asked the ministry to continue letting private schools start classes four weeks earlier than public schools.

Nguyen Thi Hien, chairwoman of Doan Thi Diem High School, said, "If we only teach the ministry's curriculum, we'll not be able to survive. We have other programmes that need time to be implemented. Starting school early will make sure that they have time to teach all the knowledge and skills needed while starting co-operation programmes with international schools.

Nguyen Van Hoa, chairman of Nguyen Binh Khiem High School, agreed that three-month holiday is too long as private schools have many different programmes. Moreover, families in the cities will have difficulties in finding places and babysitters to look after their children in the summer.

Meanwhile, Tran Van Ha, a parent of two children in private primary and secondary schools in Hanoi, supported the decision to let students take a full three-month summer holiday. During this time, they can send their children to take swimming and football classes or visit relatives and friends. According to Ha, their children's summer holiday started in May but in July, they already had to take extra classes and started schools in August. Therefore, they only had a four-week holiday.

Thai Van Thanh, director of Nghe An Department of Education and Training said going to schools in both mornings and afternoons is enough for the children to follow the curriculum and other educational activities. It's necessary to have a long summer holiday for the children to attend sports and entertainment activities with friends and family.

Former NA Deputy Bui Thi An said she didn't agree with starting school before September 5 but she understood and supported schools in holding activities that meed children and parents' demands. The Ministry of Education and Training should assess the impacts to have practical adjustments.

The representatives of many schools in Hanoi have signed on a proposal to ask the ministry to review the timeline and have suitable adjustments for the private sector.

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