Homeschooling model raises controversy

Created 01 June 2017
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Though opinions differ about homeschooling, many Vietnamese believe it is not a good education model for children.

Dang Thai Anh, Dang Nhat Anh and their father

 

The arguments about homeschooling were raised after stories about two homeschooled boys appeared in local newspapers recently. They are Dang Thai Anh, born in 2003, and Dang Nhat Anh, born in 1998. Their parents Dang Quoc Anh and Le Thi Thanh were university lecturers.

Their elder child stopped going to school in 2014, and the younger child followed the move. 

Thanh told the press that her children suffered injustice at school. The elder child and 20 other students, who did not learn their lessons, were asked to stand in front of the teachers’ room as a punishment. The young child was told to do many home exercises  because he did not attend extra classes run by the teacher. If not, he would suffer physical punishment.

Anh and Thanh believe that the education method applied by the school is not effective. Also, they found the curricula was overloaded with unnecessary knowledge.

In 2014, Anh decided to resign from his post, stayed at home and taught the children himself.

After three years of staying at home and only studying what they liked under the parents’ guidance, Dang Thai Anh (14) and Dang Nhat Anh (19) have gained impressive achievements.

In September 2016, Thai Anh got a 8.5 score on IELTS when he was 13. Nhat Anh got an 8.0 in IELTS in July 2015. Nhat Anh is going abroad to follow higher education with full scholarship.

However, the impressive achievements gained by the two boys were not enough to persuade Vietnamese educators and parents that homeschooling is a good model for children.

Nguyen Khanh Trung from IRED, an education institute, said school is not only a place where students learn, but where students’ personality forms. 

“If students stay at home, they won’t have many opportunities to communicate with friends, which will affect their personality development,” he said.

Nguyen Quoc Vuong, a postgraduate from Kanazawa University, said family plays a very important role in educating children, but in order to have comprehensive development, children need all three factors – family, school and local education.

Some educators have called on the Ministry of Education and Training to recognize the legitimacy of the homeschooling model.

While homeschooling has been very popular in developed countries, it remains unfamiliar to Vietnamese. However, the concept has been imported to Vietnam by the parents who have the chances to work and live in the countries and it has, step by step, become more popular.

 

Source: VietNamNet

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