State-owned schools complain about restrictions in autonomy policy
VietNamNet Bridge - Twenty-three state-owned universities are following the autonomy policy on a trial basis under a government resolution. However, they say they don’t have the right to make decisions on personnel and budgeting. 


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Twenty-three universities are following the autonomy policy



Under Resolution No 77 dated in 2014, these schools can enjoy autonomy in issues related to training, scientific research, personnel and finance.

In the last three years, these schools have been allowed to use imported curricula and cooperate with international schools and organizations without having to ask for permission from the governing body. 

They also can take the initiative in making investment in research. It takes 3-6 months to get permission to open new majors instead of one year as previously.

However, schools complain that many rights still cannot be implemented, especially those related to finance and personnel.

Do Van Dung, rector of the HCM City University of Technical Education, said the school has to ‘dodge the laws’ to make decisions, or their plans will be canceled. 

The schools are still under the control of MOET. All the assets belong to the state and the school has to observe the Law on Public Investment.

“We are a ‘self-determined’ school, but we still had to ask for MOET’s (Ministry of Education and Training) permission to tile the motorbike park,” Dung said.

The school only received the go-ahead from MOET several months after it filed the application, even though the school, not the state, spent funds on the tiling. 

Dung said that Resolution No 77, though setting more flexibility for such schools, cannot neglect provisions stipulated in other laws. The schools are still under the control of MOET. All the assets belong to the state and the school has to observe the Law on Public Investment.

He said that such schools cannot ignore the Law on Cadres and Civil Servants to recruit senior or foreign specialists, and they cannot make decisions on procurement contrary to the Law on Public Investment.

Some enterprises, domestic owned and foreign invested, wanted to lease land at the school to set up experimental units, but the school had to refuse. 

Dung said he will have to make proposals to many different agencies and undergo complicated procedures. 

Meanwhile, if the leasing can be implemented, the school can earn no less than VND10 billion a year, which can be invested to improve the curriculum, exempt tuition for some students, and raise lecturers’ incomes.

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam emphasised that Vietnam will continue to give autonomy to public universities after the pilot project on the autonomy of universities is completed.


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Thanh Lich

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