Many parents and Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi are forcing a well-rounded education on their five-year-olds despite their kids’ reaction.
“Mom, I’m afraid of school,” Bao Ngoc, a five-year-old girl in Hanoi’s Hoang Mai District told her mother one day after running after one extra class after another at Phuong Nam Primary School.
Bao Ngoc isn’t alone.
These days, in an effort to prepare their children for the first grade, parents are sending their five-year-olds to extra classes that teach 1st-grade curricula despite a government ban on such activities.
At these classes, kids are often taught Vietnamese, math, English, arts, and life skills.
An endless circle
A teacher at NDC Primary School in HCMC’s Binh Thanh District said this is all a matter of demand and supply.
She said schools are merely offering what parents want.
For their part, parents say they are themselves being caught up in a circle.
Doan, a female factory worker in District 9 in HCMC who has enrolled her child to such classes for 2 months, told Tuoi Tre that she has to do what other parents are doing for their children because she doesn’t want her child to fall behind.
Other parents agree.
“My kid would be unable to catch up with others in the 1st-grade if I did not send him to these classes,” Hoai Lien, another mother, said.
In the meantime, ads for these classes can be seen everywhere.
Tuition range from VND300,000 to VND500,000 for a monthly course that meets three times a week. And the smaller the class size, the higher the fee.