Friday, August 10, 2012

Number of Students Increasing Rapidly, Universities Getting Overloaded

Number of students increasing rapidly, universities getting overloaded.

According to the Ministry of Education and Training, there are 46 universities and 17 junior colleges in Hanoi. Besides, there are also nearly 40 vocational high schools with the total number of students accounting for 43 percent of the number of students in the whole country. Meanwhile, there are 112 schools in HCM City.

Hanoi and HCM City are the two big cities where most of the key universities with very high numbers of students are located.

Material facilities poor, number of students increasing rapidly – what to do?

Tran Thanh Binh, Director of the School Design and Research Institute under the Ministry of Education and Training, said that the average area of schools is too low Most of the schools have the land of less than 10 hectares, lack basic functional areas, and their the education environment is generally bad.

Analysts have blamed the current situation on the too rapidly increasing number of students. Meanwhile, schools’ actual land area have been reduced because parts of the land have been used for different purposes.

The Hanoi University of Technology with 34 hectares of land was designed in 1960s to fit 2000 students. Meanwhile, the number of students has increased 10 times.

newly established schools have been running in even worse conditions. The classrooms are located on small areas or in houses which were not designed as classrooms. It is common that students of the same schools have to go to classrooms located in different places. Meanwhile, the schools are not located in easily accessible areas.

some schools have made large investment of hundreds of billions dong to upgrade their facilities. The Hanoi Economics University, for example, carried out the project to fit 15,000 students of the school. However, the school is located on Giai Phong Road near the key traffic point. Meanwhile, many other schools are located in the area with no urban roads, thus making it difficlut to travel.

Relocating schools to suburb areas? It’s not easy

The only solution to the current problem is to relocate the schools to suburb areas, where the there is more available land. The HCM City authorities have reserved 2210 hectares of land in Dong Bac new urban area for 50 schools to move in.

Hanoi is also planning to bring 40,000 students of the Hanoi National University to Hoa Lac new urban area, 30 kilometres from the city centre More than 10 universities and junior colleges will be moved to satellite urban areas such as Gia Lam (the area will gather agriculture, polytechnique and technology schools), Soc Son (polytechnique and information technology), and Son Tay (social sciences, pedagogical and tourism schools)

However, experts have warned that it is not easy to relocate and re-equip the schools, because the project will need a huge sum of capital which goes beyond the capacity of schools, while the state budget remains limited.

Then a new solution has been suggested that schools can exchange their campuses in the inner city for the capital to be invested in suburb areas.

This measure has been applied by the HCM City University of Physical and Sports Education is after getting the approval from the Ministry of Education and Training and HCM City authorities. This means that the city’s authorities will auction a land plot (which has the same value with the current land plot of the school) in order to get money to help the school build a new campus. After everything is prepared at the new campus, the school will hand over its current campus to the city.

However, the project is facing a lot of difficulties. An official from the school said that the land plot for auction has not been sold.

Dr Pham Van Nang, President of the HCM City Economics University, said that the school has been talking about the relocation for the past 10 years. However, no considerable progress has been made so far.


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