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December 3, 2021, 2:31 am

Nursery schools shut down, where will children go?

(11:23:42 AM 25/12/2013)
( - Hanoi and HCM City local authorities have vowed to shut down the unlicensed nurseries, or the household run classes which fail to meet the requirements on safety for babies. But this means that the children from poor families and immigrant workers would have nowhere to go.


The decisions have been made after a lot of child abuse cases were discovered recently.


Just within four weeks, two babies died from the accidents that occurred at private nursery classes, operating without licenses.


Most recently, a video clip was handed over to the police, showing a lot of children beaten brutally by two babysitters in HCM City. The images stunned the public which has asked to heavily punish the cold blooded babysitters.


Local education and training departments have become the “aiming points” for the public’s criticism. Parents believe that the watchdog agencies have to take responsibility for the existence of the unlicensed household run classes and the untrained teachers.


In answer to the criticism, Hanoi and HCM City Education and Training Departments have announced that they will shut down unlicensed and substandard nurseries by mid January 2014 at the latest.


What will happen if the nurseries have to shut down?


Nguyen Tho Truyen, Deputy Chair of Thu Duc district People’s Committee, said if unlicensed household run classes can no longer exist, children would have to be put into licensed schools and classes. If so, the licensed schools and classes would become overloaded.


Truyen said the local authorities still cannot arrange seats at schools for 415 children in Binh Chieu ward and 100 children in Linh Xuan ward.


The current laws stipulate that at least one state owned nursery school must be built in every ward. However, nine wards in HCM City still don’t have state owned schools.


In Binh Tan district, there are still no state owned nursery schools in Binh Hung Hoa A and Binh Hung Hoa B wards. The local authorities have land fund, but don’t have money to build schools.


According to Tran Thi Kim Thanh, Deputy Director of the HCM City Education and Training Department, 870 nursery schools have been licensed in the city, 52.2 percent of which are non-state owned. Of the 309,279 children, 148,207, or 47.9 percent, go to non-state owned schools. The figure would be very big, if counting on the children going to unlicensed nurseries. Meanwhile, the majority of schools only accept the 18-month or older children.


According to Thi Thi Tuyet Nhung, Deputy Head of the Cultural and Social Affairs Committee of the HCM City People’s Council, of the 1,293 classrooms built in 2011, only 184 were reserved for nurseries.


Commenting about the plan to shut down unlicensed schools, Nguyen Thi Quyet Tam, Chair of the HCM City People’s Council said local authorities need to find out reasonable solutions to the problems, not just to put a ban.


The officials from districts’ education sub-department said that household run nurseries should be accepted to help ease the serious lacking of state owned schools. And once accepting the classes, the local authorities need to find out reasonable measures to put them under the strict control.


Thanh Mai

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