Over-enrolled universities dismiss MOET reprisals
Jan. 19th, 2010
Education inspectors have discovered some universities that enrolled double the number of students allowed, even though they well know that the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) will mete out punishments.
Accepting as many as they want
MOET Chief Inspector Nguyen Van Chien told VietNamNet that after MOET issues enrollment limits to every university, provincial authorities expanded these quotas.
Khanh Hoa authorities raised the limits above those set by MOET for the Nha Trang Culture, Art and Tourism Junior College. The Ministry of Industry and Trade spontaneously adjusted limits in its schools without consulting MOET.
Eighteen universities and junior colleges were fined 40-60 million dong in 2007 because they enrolled more students than allowed. Also in 2007, MOET discovered 34 universities that had accepted over 20 percent more students than permitted.
The number of “black-listed” universities grew to 40 in 2008. In 2009, 38 schools had a student population higher by 15 percent than acceptable.
Phan Thiet University is a prime example. Enrollment in 2009-2010 was 91.73 percent higher than the allowable level (750 vs. 1,438). MOET fined the university 60 million dong for its violation.
Can Tho Junior College also had a surprisingly high number of students: it accepted 2,075 students when it was only allowed 1,100.
Vocational schools empty
While universities and junior colleges seem to easily enroll more and more students, vocational schools complain that they cannot enroll enough.
In 2009, the schools used only 93 percent of their “quotas.”
Pham Nhu Nghe, a MOET senior official, has observed that if schools continue expanding their scale and study branches and increase the number of students by 10 percent every year, vocational schools will have no students to enroll.
The demand for students is bigger and bigger every year, while the number of students finishing high school is not growing. Many universities are now offering vocational training (2-year training), which may force specialized vocational schools to close.
The principle of supply and demand
MOET plans to increase ceilings for student enrollment at universities (4-years training) and junior colleges (3-year training) by 10 percent in 2010 (571,000 students), and to increase the quota for vocational schools also by 10 percent (460,000 students).
As such, the total limit for students for universities, junior colleges and vocational schools will be 1.5 million.
Meanwhile, there are only 1.1 million students in total, including students who finish high school in 2010 and students who failed university entrance exams last year and may repeat exams in 2010.
A MOET official remarked that the gap between supply and demand will certainly lead to many schools without enough students.