Over the recent years, Vietnam has become an ideal destination for people from the Republic of Korea to live and work. As one among them, I wish to establish a kindergarten in Vietnam. What conditions and procedures that I have to meet and carry out for doing so?
According to the Vietnam’s Table of WTO commitments on services, the country has now opened its door for foreigners to invest in education. The Vietnamese law also provides specifically for the establishment of foreign-invested education institutions (Decree 86/2018/ND-CP dated June 6, 2018, on foreign cooperation and investment in education).
As per regulations, an investment project on establishing a foreign kindergarten must have an investment ratio of at least VND 30 million per child (excluding land use levy). The total minimum capital may be calculated based on the peak time of education scale. Besides, the investment capital plan must suit the projected scale at each stage.
The number of Vietnamese children enrolled in such a kindergarten to be educated under a foreign education program must be lower than half of the total number of children enrolled under such foreign education program.
* Requirements on physical facilities and equipment
- A kindergarten must be located in a place with healthy environment. Its construction area must match the number of classes and children, with at least 8 m2 or 12 m2 per child for urban or rural areas, respectively;
|A class of Maple Bear Kindergarten in Hanoi __Photo: Internet|
- It must have classrooms, children’s bedrooms and other functional rooms with appropriate space, light, desks, chairs and equipment for taking care of and educating children;
- It must have an administrators’ office, an administration room, a clinic, a security room and staff’s rooms with appropriate areas and equipment for managing, taking care of, nurturing and teaching children;
- It must have a clean water system and water drainage system and appropriate toilets with safe and clean sanitary ware for all children’s daily activities;
- If preparing meals for children, its kitchens must be organized according to the one-way process with suitable utensils ensuring food safety and hygiene;
- It must have a playground, surrounding walls and a gate with a board showing the kindergarten’s name;
- There must be trees within its area. All construction designs, equipment, utensils and toys must be safe for children;
- Blocks for nursery groups, preschool classes and service personnel must be separated, ensuring safety and educational requirements for each age group and have emergency exits and fire prevention and control systems;
- All of these facilities must be accessible for children with disabilities.
* Requirements on education program
A foreign-invested kindergarten may use a Vietnamese or foreign education program, which must demonstrate educational objectives, have no contents detrimental to the national defense and security and public interests, must neither spread religions nor distort history nor exert adverse impacts on culture, morality and fine traditions and customs of Vietnam.
* Requirements on personnel
A principal must possess an intermediate preschool teacher training degree or the equivalent and have at least five consecutive years working in the preschool education. In case of special requirements of the title, a person appointed or accredited as a principal may have fewer years of working experience.
In addition, he/she must have completed a manager training course, have political, ethical, lifestyle and professional quality prestige and capacity of school and preschool organization and management, and be physically fit.
- Vice principal:
A vice principal is required to fulfill the above requirements applicable to principal, except that on completion of a manager training course. Besides, he/she is only required to have at least three consecutive years working in the preschool education.
- Teachers and staff:
While a teacher is required to possess a collegial preschool teacher training degree or the equivalent, preschool healthcare and accounting staff must have an intermediary degree in their assigned working fields. Those who work as treasurers, librarians, archivists, cooks or security guards must be trained in their assigned working fields.
* Requirements on class organization
The maximum number of children to be enrolled in one group/class is prescribed as follows:
- For children of nursery age:
+ Children aged 3-12 months: 15 children/group;
+ Children aged 13-24 months: 20 children/group;
+ Children aged 25-36 months: 25 children/group.
- For children of preschool age:
+ Children aged 3-4 years: 25 children/class;
+ Children aged 4-5 years: 30 children/class;
+ Children aged 5-6 years: 35 children/class.
The number of teachers for one group/class is prescribed as follows:
- For children of nursery age: 5 children/teacher;
- For children of preschool age: 10-12 children/teacher.
* Order and procedures for establishment of preschool education institutions
As per Vietnamese law, an investor who wishes to establish a foreign-invested kindergarten has to apply for an investment registration certificate, a decision permitting the establishment of the institution, and a decision licensing the educational activity, which must be publicly announced on the website of the licensing agency.
Chairpersons of provincial-level People’s Committees may decide on the establishment of kindergartens. A dossier of application for permission for establishment of a kindergarten must comprise:
- An application for permission for establishment of a kindergarten;
- A certified true copy or a copy enclosed with the original of the investment registration certificate;
- A plan on establishment of a kindergarten;
- A certified true copy or a copy enclosed with the original of the written approval for land lease by the provincial-level People’s Committee, if the physical foundations are to be built (clearly stating the address, area, and boundaries of the land plot) or the in-principle agreement on lease of available physical foundations, and other relevant documents of title;
- A detailed plan on physical foundations or an investment project on building physical foundations, including an information presentation and detailed designs of the kindergarten;
- Documents proving the investor’s financial capacity up to the prescribed level.
* Procedures for permitting the establishment of kindergartens
An investor has to send one set of dossier directly or by post to the provincial-level Education and Training Department;
Within five working days after receiving a complete dossier, the receiving agency will check the validity of the dossier and send it to related agencies and units for their opinions;
If finding the dossier incomplete, within five working days after receiving it, the receiving agency will notify such in writing directly, by post or via email to the investor. Meanwhile, related agencies or units will have to give their opinions in writing within ten working days after receiving an official letter from the receiving agency;
Within 30 working days after receiving a complete dossier, the receiving agency has to submit the dossier appraisal report to the competent authority for consideration and decision on permitting the establishment of the foreign-invested kindergarten;
If the dossier is rejected, within five working days after receiving opinions from the competent authority, the receiving agency has to notify such in writing directly or by post to the investor, clearly stating the reason.
After two years after the decision permitting the establishment takes effect, if the kindergarten is not allowed to carry out educational activities, such decision will be invalidated.
A foreign-invested kindergarten may operate for up to 50 years counting from the date of grant of an investment registration certificate, and its maximum operation duration must not exceed the land lease term.
A foreign-invested kindergarten’s proper name must neither be identical nor cause confusion with the name of a previously registered educational institution or an investment project-implementing enterprise; and may not contain words or symbols in direct contradiction to the national tradition, history, culture, ethics and fine customs of Vietnam.
A foreign-invested kindergarten must have transaction names in Vietnamese and English (or another common foreign language) of the same meaning.- (VLLF)