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VN abolishes incentive to octogenarian heroines who take college exam

VN abolishes incentive to octogenarian heroines who take college exam

Wednesday, July 17, 2013, 11:50 GMT+7

The Vietnamese Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) has scrapped a contentious rule that would grant additional grades to Vietnamese Heroic Mothers – who are generally in their 80s, 90s – when they sit for national university entrance exams, following public derision.

MoET said Tuesday in a circular that bonus points will not be added to the total score of the mothers, women whose children died in wartime, if they sit for university entrance exams.

This new ruling will be in effect as of August 30 to replace the regulation issued on July 4 whereby these mothers, together with those who engaged in the country’s 1945 revolution against French colonial rule, would be given two extra points when they take tests to gain admission to college.

Opponents immediately pointed out that most of the mothers are too old to enroll in college, so it is nearly impossible for them to benefit from this preferential treatment.

A National Assembly Deputy, Nguyen Minh Thuyet, even dismissed the policy as “mechanical and unnecessary” because such mothers are in their 80s, 90s at the moment so few would ever think of taking the exams.

Dr. Nguyen Ngoc Dien, vice president of the Ho Chi Minh City University of Economics and Law, echoed Thuyet’s opinion by saying that the regulation was “weird,” “unrealistic,” and showed a sign of bureaucracy in introducing rules in Vietnam.  

A university admissions officer added that he had never seen any application from “the children of these mothers,” so the prospect of the heroines themselves taking admission tests to benefit from this policy was totally improbable.

Vietnam has about 44,000 Vietnamese Heroic Mothers who are still alive, statistics show, most of whom are living in poverty.

The Vietnamese Heroic Mother is a title that is awarded, sometimes posthumously, to mothers who have made numerous contributions and sacrifices for the cause of national liberation, national construction and defense, and the performance of international obligations, according to the portal of the Ministry of Justice.

The nation annually requires those aspiring for a college education to pass tests in a national exam, unlike many other countries that recruit students for higher education based mainly on their high school performance.

Vietnamese educators usually give extra points to certain candidates, like those who come from poor or mountainous areas and applicants whose family took part in the country’s wars against foreign invaders, in these exams to help them compete with students from urban regions.

Tuoi Tre

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