As Ho Chi Minh said, there are three “national catastrophes” for Vietnam – famine, foreign invaders, and illiteracy.
Vietnam is not in the top-list for the prestige of education in the world. Vietnamese universities and schools, in particular educational institutions in the capitals, do not suffer from the lack of foreign teachers. The practice of involving specialists from the USA and Europe is widespread. Many students who have graduated from universities in their country looking for a job in Vietnam, because it is quite easy to get a job with a good salary.
So what’s the deal?
The educational program is divided into levels: preschool, primary school, secondary, high school, and higher education. In general, the school system assumes 12 years of study, of which 5 years are a primary school, four years are secondary, and three years are a high school, then a university. Full-time education prevails in the morning or evening shift.
In addition to the standard classification, there are “prestigious” schools, which, in addition to high results in entrance exams, often require a certain social status and financial capabilities. Subsequently, admission to the university is determined by the height of the score gained during the final school exams.
Lacking the necessary funds, children from low-income families are doomed to study in low-class schools. As a result, they cannot or simply do not even try to enter a prestigious university.
The thing is that before the main task was always the fight against illiteracy, i.e. developed not the quality of teaching, but the quantity, and achieved in this no doubt brilliant success. School education is available to everyone and everywhere, in any remote mountain village. The number of institutes, universities, colleges in the country from 2000 to 2010 increased 2.5-3 times. But.. more than half of the graduates have problems with finding a job.
With one of the highest GDP growth rates in the world, only in 2013 the country’s authorities, together with the Ministry of Education, drastically increased the budget for providing educational institutions. Now about 20% of GDP is allocated to the education system every year! The Vietnamese government has set a new task – to radically change the quality of education. Special programs were developed, for example, the preparation of 10,000 PhD by 2020 abroad, $ 15,000 per year were allocated for each student. Also a very well working program to attract foreign teachers and create private foreign training centers, which are currently among the best in the country.
Smoothly, we have come to the topic of most interest to our reader. Where and how to study for the children of parents who are considering living in Vietnam. We will answer simply – a private school. Fortunately, there is a choice. It can be either a private school of a European type, with a predominance of Vietnamese students, or a private school, formed for the needs of foreign students. So, in the cities of Nha Trang, Phan Rang, Danang, of course, in the capitals of Saigon and Hanoi, there are definitely such schools, these are the ones that we know personally.
Thanks to the worldwide leap in information technology and such dramatic changes related to COVID-19, we recently saw a change in the practical approach to face-to-face education standards when students were transferred to home education. And while the quality of education in Vietnam continues to gain momentum, it is likely in the coming years will be possible partially get away from the physical visits of educational institutions, such assumptions and ideas were expressed in the Ministry of Education about future of the education system.