MOET education reform raises concerns
VietNamNet Bridge - The public has been told that there will be a ‘revolution’ in general education initiated by the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET). But details have not been revealed. 

Vietnam, national high school finals, education reform, MOET

Nguyen Van Ngai, former deputy director of the HCM City Education and Training Department, noted teaching students in an integrated way is a growing tendency in the world. 

However, MOET’s draft education program does not clearly show the necessary preparations to go that way. 

The new education program is expected to be applied in 2018, which means that Vietnam only has three years more to prepare for program implementation in terms of teaching staff, curriculum and facilities.

Under the new program, secondary school students would have 7-8 compulsory learning subjects, while high school students would have four. Some subjects will be restructured to adapt to the new circumstances.

Ngai noted that the changes in the design of subjects will require new teaching methods. Teachers will need retraining to be able to apply the new methods. 

Meanwhile, he cannot find any words in the draft program about the retraining plan.

“It would not be a simple job to retrain teachers, who have become used to teach subjects separately and now have to learn to teach in an integrated way,” he said.

He emphasized that existing teachers will need to be retrained, while pedagogy schools will have to re-design their curricula. 

“In general, there are still too many things that need to be done,” he said.

Doan Nhat Quang from Marie Curie High School in HCM City warned that it would be a burden for schools to set schedules for thousands of students who have different choices of optional subjects. 

Schools will have to upgrade their facilities to satisfy the requirements for the new teaching method. This is a problem because of the scanty budget.

A high school teacher in Hanoi said that MOET wants to apply the world’s most advanced teaching technology and set high goals for Vietnam’s education, but does not show how Vietnam can reach that goal.

“Teaching this way will require modern teaching aids and teachers’ deep multidisciplinary knowledge. Meanwhile, MOET does not say how to get these things,” he commented.

Ngo Tuong Dai, deputy headmaster of the Quang Trung – Nguyen Hue High School in HCM City, said he doubts the new education program would help ease students’ study burdens.

“Easing overloading should be understood as reducing the amount of academic knowledge taught, but increasing practice hours. Easing the workload does not simply mean cutting the number of subjects,” he said.

Ngan Anh

Vietnam, national high school finals, education reform, MOET