Parents hesitate about optional fees

Though Ho Chi Minh City’s Department of Training and Education asked schools to clearly explain the different between compulsory and optional fees to parent in the beginning of this academic year, parents still hesitate about non-mandatory optional fees.


Students participate in a class at Dong Da primary school in Hanoi.

The department has required both district and city education authorities to publicize all the different types of fees.

In the first parents’ meeting at L.T.R preschool, some parents said they have to pay VND700,000 – 800,000 (US$35 – 40) in the beginning of this academic year, not including other fees such as uniform and breakfast.

After the school reported the amount for the entire academic school, a representative of parents association asked each parent need to pay more VND200,000 with reason – the school is not enough toys, so parents need to buy more toys.

At the L.D.C primary school, before the beginning of the academic year parents had to pay VND277,500 for English course, health insurance and material facilities. In addition, parents had to pay more VND500,000 for tables and parents’ fund.

A parent said she had to pay VND900,000 in the beginning of the academic year. She wonders how much she will have to pay more in the middle of the academic year.

Under the requirement of the department, Parents had the choice about payment of non-mandatory optional fees, such as health insurance, and teachers were not allowed to collect this money.

Schools must also publicise the negotiated fees for meals, study aides, and hygiene and security for students.

Private schools were allowed to set their own school fees, but pre-schools and secondary schools were required to publicise the amount for the entire academic year.

By Thanh Thanh, A.Khoa _ Translated by Thanh Huong

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