Parents and teachers concerned about change in school hours
  • By Quang Phong | | February 01, 2012 02:45 PM
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Hanoi will apply a change in office and school hours starting today (February 1), causing worries among both parents and teachers.

Many parents are worried that they will not be able to arrange times to pick up their children in the afternoon

According to the instruction of the Hanoi Department of Education and Training, pre-school, primary and secondary school students will attend school from 8am to 5pm. Vocational schools, colleges and universities will begin at 7am, with afternoon sessions ending after 7pm.

However, many parents are worried that they will not be able to arrange times to pick up their children in the afternoon. 

Also, a number of high school teachers who have children voiced the concern that the new timetables would make life more difficult. One, in particular, was quoted as saying, "Under the new timetables I have to work until 7pm, the same time my kids get out of school. I don't know how to arrange for them to be picked up."

Pham Thi Yen, the Headmaster of Thanh Cong B Primary School, said that the hour change will require teachers to work longer hours, but it is uncertain whether they will get extra pay. 

Nguyen Tung Lam, Headmaster of Dinh Tien Hoang High-School, said, high-school students usually have regular classes in the morning or afternoon, and the rest of the day is used for extracurricular activities, which amount to one or two hours. Then they have to leave the classrooms for other pupils. Under the new regulation, he said, the students will have to stay at school until 7pm. 

“We can manage regular classes, but I don't know how we will be able to deal with the extracurricular courses,” Lam noted.

Mrs Hai, the Vice Headmaster of Doan Ket High-School, in Hai Ba Trung District, said, “It gets dark very early during this season and it's dangerous for students to go home at 7 pm because not all of the roads are equipped with proper lighting. I don't know what the authorities were thinking when they came up with this regulation.”

Colleges and universities ignore the new rules

While pre-schools and high schools are actively implementing the new regulation, many colleges and universities have simply ignored it. Just a small minority of them are managed by the Hanoi People’s Committee, while the rest under ministries and agencies and are not under their jurisdiction.

An official from Hanoi University of Foreign Trade said “It is impossible for universities to conform to the change in hours. Currently, the morning hour of the university starts at 6:45 and afternoon hour ends at 5:00."

One official from the Hanoi University of Technology commented that universities will find it difficult to conform with the hour changes, because they have a limited number of classrooms and have to arrange shifts for different courses in order to serve all the students. 

Starting from today, high school, college and university students had to rush to school to get to class on time by the new hour of 7am. 

Adapting to the new rules

High-school students hurry to school

Traffic police at work at 6 a.m

Waiting in the cold for school to open

Students arrive at Ly Thuong Kiet High School at 7am

Many come late

Mild improvements in traffic, but jams still occur 

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