VietNamNet Bridge – The State plans to budget 5762 billion dong for the education and training development in 2012, an increase of 5.4 percent over the previous year. Nevertheless, schools still complain that with the modest budget, they would still face a lot of difficulties.
Schools still complain that with the modest budget, they would still face a lot of difficulties. According to the Ministry of Education and Training, of the budget of 5762 billion dong for education and training, 4832 billion dong would be spend on regular expenses, up by 15.1 percent in comparison with 2011, while 929 billion dong would be spent on development and investment, an increase of 3.5 percent.
The “budget cake” bigger, but “pieces of the cake” remain small
President of the HCM City Law University Mai Hong Quy said that in 2011, while emphasizing that budget is the most important tool that the ministry can use to force schools to follow its policies, said that it is necessary to reconsider while the budget allocated to schools in 2012 is not higher than previous years.
In 2011, the HCM City Law University, for example, received 10 billion dong from the state budget, and the same sum would come this year, even though the total budget for education and training would be bigger.
Meanwhile, the source of revenue of schools has narrowed because they have to reduce the number of students under the mode of non-regular training, and schools have to pay higher to university lecturers. “We still do not know where to arrange money to do that,” Quy complained.
Quy said that she advocates the policy of reducing the number of students under the mode of non-regular training, but she believes that it is necessary to reconsider the cutting of number of students. The numbers of students to be enrolled should depend on the training majors.
Sharing the same viewpoint, Dr Dinh Xuan Khoa, President of the Vinh University, also said that the decision by the Ministry of Education and Training to cut down the number of students has caused big difficulties for schools, because they do not have extra sources of income. His university has to cut down the number of students by 1000 in 2011, which means that the income of the school decreases and the income of lecturers decrease accordingly.
Vinh complained that in order to save money, his university now dares not send its staff to conferences and workshops in Hanoi regularly and to professional training courses. “Every year, we spend 3 billion dong on this,” he said.
Khoa has pointed out that the investment rate of the schools belonging to the Ministry of Education and Training is now much lower than that of local schools. 6 million dong per annum per students vs 8 million dong.
Khoa has proposed the ministry to keep the quotas for the number of students under the mode of regular training stable, and not to reduce the number of in-service students to less than 60 percent, so that schools can get good sources of income.
Meanwhile, President of the Civil Engineering University Le Van Thanh, said that he supports the idea of reducing the number of students. His school, for example, has reduced the number of regular training students from 3000 to 2800, which aims to improve the training quality. The school also encourages students to repeat learning if they want better learning results.
“Improve your training quality first, then ask for more money”
Speaking at a conference held recently in Hanoi, Minister of Education and Training Pham Vu Luan emphasized that it’s now the time for schools to reconsider their training quality. He said that he had to answer a lot of questions relating to the education and training quality before the National Assembly.
He affirmed that the principle of allocating budget in 2012 would not see considerable changes in comparison with 2011. Especially, by 2013, schools would know about the budget for 3-5 years instead of every year, so that they can draw up long term development plans.