Underpaid instructors advise students against teaching careers
April. 14th, 2010
Very few high school students have registered to take university entrance exams to pedagogical schools, raising concerns that Vietnam may lack teachers in the future.
Kim Anh, a Marie Curie High School teacher, noted that the school’s students made 2,400 applications for exams to universities and colleges. Most registered to take exams for economics schools; very few students have chosen education schools
According to Anh, only 26 students registered for exams at HCM City University of Education to become foreign language teachers. Ten registered for exams at HCM City Central College for Preschool Education.
Trung Vuong High School offered the same results. Only 17 students applied for exams at HCM City University of Education and no one chose HCM City Central College for Pre-school Education.
HCM City University of Education received registrations directly from students over the last two days, accepting a grand total of 300 applications (students can register for university entrance exams at their schools, at the Ministry of Education and Training, or directly at the universities). Officials believe that the number of registrations in 2010 will be lower than the previous year (24,500).
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Education and Training office in HCM City said that they have received only two out of 1000 applications to take exams at HCM City Central College for Pre-school Education.
Why don’t students want to study at pedagogical schools? Officers of training departments of universities and colleges admit that education schools have become less attractive. Some high school teachers admit that they have advised students against becoming teachers.
A V. High School teacher compared teacher salaries with those of a worker in another field to show students how low instructor incomes are, and advised students against this career.
A Tien Phong reporter met T.M, a student of HCM City University of Education, who has registered to take exams to an economics school. T.M. told the journalist that he wants to give up studies at this institution, so he will take exams for another school this year.
Ta Quang Lam, MA, Head of the Training Division of HCM City University of Education, also commented that many students told him that they do not want to continue, because they will not be able to earn a living as teachers.
Others want to become teachers, but their parents have forced them to choose other schools so that they can earn more money.
According to Lam, in 2000 the State began offering special privileges to pedagogical school students, including free tuition, in an effort to increase the number of education school students.
At that time HCM City University of Education received 42,000 registrations, but only needed 1000 students. Since then, the number of registrations has been decreasing yearly.
He agreed that even with free tuition to pedagogical schools, students are not interested because of low teacher salaries.