Vietnamese parents rethink overseas study for children
VietNamNet Bridge - Vietnamese parents once thought that sending their children to overseas schools was the best choice to help them make their way in the world. 


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“There are always two sides of a coin,” Le Truc, a parent in Hoang Mai district said about his daughter. 

Truc flew to the Netherlands some months ago to bring his daughter back to Vietnam.

Truc and his wife decided that their daughter needed to study overseas to receive a modern education and find a good job in the future.

“We began preparing for her overseas study when she entered the ninth grade,” Truc said, adding that he and his wife carried the girl to foreign language center in shifts everyday.

After four years of studying English, she got 6.0 for the IELTS exam, just enough to enroll in a school in the Netherlands.

Vietnamese parents once thought that sending their children to overseas schools was the best choice to help them make their way in the world. 

The girl experienced very difficult days in the Netherlands. She called her parents and complained about being homesick, and the unfamiliar food, weather and people. She said she wanted to go home.

The girl also told her parents that her English was not good enough to understand the lessons. 

However, Truc thought that his daughter would overcome the difficulties, like many other Vietnamese students studying overseas.

But he was wrong. Things got more serious. Her friends called Truc and informed him that his daughter had been absent for two weeks. She stayed at home all day and refused to communicate with friends and teachers.

Truc then decided to bring the girl to Vietnam and found that she had been suffering from depression.

“We dare not send our daughter to the Netherlands again, even if she is well again,” Truc said.

Pham Duc Chuan from the Children’s Psychology and Cardiology Research Center commented that people talk about the positive effects of overseas study, but they tend to ignore the negative effects.

“It is really a blunder if someone thinks that sending children abroad is a miracle cure for their kids,” he said.

Many parents think that once their children live alone, they will have to become independent instead of being reliant on their parents. And many children can easily get adapted to new circumstances. However, many others cannot. They become even worse in unfamiliar environments.

A report of the Ministry of Education and Training released recently showed that Japan, Australia, the US and China are the countries where Vietnamese students like studying the most.

There are 130,000 Vietnamese citizens studying overseas. These include 38,000 in Japan (29.2 percent), 31,000 in Australia (23.8 percent), 28,000 in the US (21.5 percent) and 13,000 in China (10 percent). The number of Vietnamese students is lower in the UK, about 11,000, or 8.4 percent.

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Thanh Mai

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