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Kindergarten teachers in Vietnamese province do unpaid work for months

Kindergarten teachers in Vietnamese province do unpaid work for months

Sunday, March 20, 2022, 10:21 GMT+7
Kindergarten teachers in Vietnamese province do unpaid work for months
A teacher and students at a local kindergarten in Muong Lat District, Thanh Hoa Province, Vietnam. Photo: Ha Dong / Tuoi Tre

Many kindergarten teachers in the mountainous Muong Lat District of Thanh Hoa Province in north-central Vietnam are facing financial obstacles as they have not been paid for nearly three months, although they still have been at work since the beginning of this year.

These teachers have written to Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper saying that they work as contract teachers following the provincial chairman’s and the prime minister’s decision dated October 26, 2011.

By December 31 last year, all of the teachers subject to this employment mechanism had their contracts suspended and they have no longer received wages and monthly allowances like before.

As a result, they have got into financial difficulties for the past three months.

Some teachers have had to borrow money from relatives to cover their children’s tuition fees and other daily expenses.

Therefore, they proposed the local authorities pay their wages of the first three months of 2022, so that they can feel secured to continue working.

“I’m a single mom of two, with one being an eighth grader and the other in second grade," Ngan Thi Hanh, a contract teacher for many years at the Pu Nhi kindergarten in Muong Lat, told Tuoi Tre.  

“Every day, I commute around eight kilometers by motorcycle to the school to teach and take care of the kindergarteners.

"I’m doing my job well.”

Kindergarteners of the Pu Nhi kindergarten in Muong Lat District, Thanh Hoa Province are seen playing in the break time.

Kids play at the Pu Nhi kindergarten in Muong Lat District, Thanh Hoa Province, north-central Vietnam. Photo: Ha Dong / Tuoi Tre

However, she has not received monthly wages and allowances over the past three months, which has put her life and her children into trouble and forced her to borrow money to pay their tuition fees.

Besides Hanh, many other kindergarten teachers at Pu Nhi and other schools in the district are encountering the same fate, though they still go to work daily.

Tong Thi An, principal of the Pu Nhi kindergarten, said the preschool has nine contract teachers that have done unpaid work for months and are facing financial woes.

The school could do nothing but encourage them to continue their work and wait for local authorities to address the issue.

Nguyen Van Binh, chairman of Muong Lat, admitted that 58 contract kindergarten teachers in the district have not been paid since January this year.

Their labor contracts were terminated from December 31 last year as the prime minister’s Decision 60 expired.

The provincial chairman has assigned relevant agencies to map out measures to address payment issues facing contract teachers across this north-central province, including the 58 kindergarten teachers in Muong Lat.

By the end of this month, the government of Muong Lat will send a proposal to the district’s People’s Council on tapping the local backup budget to support each of the affected contract kindergarten teachers with VND3-3.5 million (US$131-153) per month, Binh added.

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Minh Duy - Ha Dong / Tuoi Tre News

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