Sunday, October 16, 2016

Universities to gain autonomy

Public universities in Vietnam are to become autonomous in academic knowledge, human resources, and finances and will tighten their accountability.
Universities to gain autonomy
Government management mechanism at universities to be removed.
Universities must clarify their scholarship mechanisms to ensure the right of poor students to access university studies, according to a government directive released after its October meeting.
The State will reduce intervention by line agencies at universities, and government management mechanisms will be gradually removed. The management model at universities will be changed to one involving a university council, which will ensure the rights of all staff and teachers.
The government assigned the Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) to revise the Law on Higher Education, the Law on Public Officers, and related legal documents to reflect the removal of government management in public universities.
Pilot projects in autonomy will be enhanced at universities so they may renew their management. MoET will also prepare legal documents to clarify the rights and responsibilities of the university council.
The removal of government management at universities was first proposed in 2010, but steps have had to be taken to ensure universities are capable of exercising autonomy.   
At a recent conference on university autonomy, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam pointed out three obstacles: finance, government management, and the management model.
He acknowledged that when State investment in universities is cut, almost all will have to increase their tuition fees and face pressure from public opinion. He affirmed that the State will not cut investment but will change the types and methods of investment.
The establishment of university councils will be the greatest challenge. Deputy Prime Minister Dam said that the introduction of university councils will reduce intervention by the State but the rights of university councils will remain limited.
Professor Tran Hong Quan, Chairman of the Association of Non-State Colleges and Universities, said that financial autonomy is making universities concerned but believes the State will adopt an appropriate timeline for the change. He predicted that in the future the State will not invest directly in universities and will change to other investment methods, such as ordering scientist research or engaging universities to consult on building modern laboratories.
Issued in April last year, MoET’s Circular No. 07 stipulates the process for evaluating the quality of university graduates, from Bachelors to PhDs. In November last year a draft legal document evaluating the quality of education and training was also issued. The two create a legal framework for universities to implement autonomy.
Under the circular, MoET will not intervene in how universities create the standards students must meet to graduate. Some universities, however, still believe that MoET will create such standards at each academic level.
MoET figures for 2015 show that student numbers reached about 22.21 million, 337,937 higher than in 2014. There were 4.42 million preschool (up 180,000), 15.08 million primary, secondary, and high school (also up 180,000), 350,000 vocational training (down 72,000), and 2.36 million university students (up 38,000) students.

Teachers and lectures totaled 1.24 million, an increase of 14,383. There were 277,684 teachers in preschools, 856,730 in primary, secondary and high schools, and 10,911 in vocational schools, as well as 91,183 lectures at universities and about 300,000 senior managers at all levels.
Read more at dtinews


Post a Comment