13/04/2015 15:19 GMT+7 Email Print Like 0

PM approves 36 mln USD textbook reform project

Hanoi, April 13 (VNA) – The Prime Minister has approved a national project to reform textbooks and curriculum for schools.

The project will cost about 36 million USD, much lower than a 1.7-billion- USD proposal made in 2014.

The project will change the entire education system (grades 1-12) and focus on building students' practical learning skills and increasing interaction between teachers and students.

According to the plan, a complete set of new textbooks will be gradually introduced starting from the 2018-19 school year.

The original cost of the project came under fierce fire in 2014. Education experts and the public were also concerned about its ability to provide students with skills for self-learning, communicating and logical thinking.

Concern was also raised at the preparations for teaching with the new materials.

One of the expected breakthroughs of this project would be ensuring that students can draw knowledge from various disciplines, giving them better skills and knowledge to deal with problems at school and life.

The first phrase of the project will be carried out from this month until June, 2016. It will focus on preparing sub-projects, building a steering committee - and training textbook writers.

The second phrase, from July 2016 to June 2018, will focus on writing and piloting at least one set of textbooks for grade 1, grade 6 and grade 10. This period will also be used to focus on training teachers.

The third phrase, from July 2018 to October 2023, will roll out new textbooks for various grades and start applying them gradually.

The Ministry of Education and Training will oversee the writing and publishing of one complete set of textbooks from grade 1-12 and encourages other publishers, individuals and organisations to write their own versions. But these versions will have to be approved by Government agencies.

The chosen set of textbooks will include from teachers, students and parents. The general curriculum will be built by the Ministry of Education and Training.

The 36 million USD cost will be funded by the Government, but there will be supplemental funding from private sources.

In an interview with Vietnam News in 2014, Deputy Minister of Education and Training Nguyen Vinh Hien said there would be constant assessments of the whole project.

He said the ministry wanted to increase healthy competition among textbook publishers to reflect the diversity of Vietnam's regions and cultures.