Tuition fee in subsidized schools is VND700,000 – VND900,000 higher than the year before. For instance, students in these school will pay VND9.8 million; VND11.7 million and VND14.3 million for different majors in 2021.
In spite of this, present tuition fee in Vietnam is still lower than that in other nations in the world.
According to the governmental decree No.86, from 2015 to 2021, ceiling fee of social science, economy, law, agriculture, forestry, fishery in state-run schools is VND18.5 million($797.1) a year from now to 2020 and it will be VND20.05 million a year from 2021.
Meanwhile, students majoring in natural science, technology, sports, arts and music, hospitality and tourism pay VND22 million to VND24 million, students of medicine and pharmacy school pay VND46 million to VND50.05 million for an academic year.
Twenty three self-financing schools have raised tuition fee from 2015 as per a road map set by the Prime Minister and did not exceed the government’s ceiling rate regulation.
Students’ tuition fee is school chief collection. Consequently, low tuition fee will not guarantee training quality resulting in low human resource compared to other countries in the globe. Nevertheless, tuition fee is a controversial issue because some people oppose to fee hike for fearing that it will make impact on students from poor families.
With the present fee, self-financing schools are able to pay lecturers and purchase supplies let alone to investment for future development.
Fear that raised tuition fee will be barrier for poor students is partly true. In reality, self-financing schools allocate 8 percent of fee and bank interest will be used to support students from low-income families, said a principal. The sum is for scholarships for needy students and children of social welfare brackets.
For instance, the fund for granting scholarship and supporting students increased from VND8 billion to VND28 billion after decision to allow schools to self-finance. However, schools was cut VND55 billion for regular spending whereas tuition fee is allowed to increase in a set road map resulting in it unable to make up the spending and lecturers’ payment, he added.
Similarly, many self-financing schools including Ton Duc Thang, International University , Economy , Open University, Marketing Finance and Ho Chi Minh City University of Food Industry mobilized tens of billion of Vietnam dong for a scholarship fund after four years of being turned in self-financed institutions.
Students of these schools can apply for a tuition fee reduction by writing a letter with local government’s confirmation.
According to the decision No. 751/QD -TTg, from June 15, 2017, a student of destitute families are entitled to ask for a loan of VND1.5 million a month.
Tuition fee raise is definitely not a barrier for poor students if there has been additional policies to help penniless students in the pursuit of studying. The government should increase the loan rate for needy students.