| Students in Hanoi attend their opening ceremony of the 2020-2021 academic year. (Photo: danviet.vn)
Students in Hanoi went to school on Saturday to open the new academic year. The opening ceremony lasted no longer than 45 minutes, most of which was dedicated to welcoming new students. Social distancing was strictly observed, according to Chu Xuan Dung, Director of the Hanoi municipal Department of Education and Training.
“There is neither parade nor balloon release this year. Students were not required to rehearse or perform at the opening ceremony to keep it at 45 minutes, thus ensuring safety for everyone,” Dung said.
To fight the COVID-19 pandemic, 105 hand wash sinks were installed at 35 state-owned high schools in Quang Ninh province.
Nguyen Thi Tien, Deputy Director of the municipal Department of Education and Training of Hai Duong province, where a number of areas were locked down, talked about preparation for the new school year, “The opening ceremony for a new academic year was observed locally except for wards in lockdown. The ceremony for small schools was attended by all new students and only representatives of higher classes.”
Schools in Da Nang city, a current COVID-19 epicenter in Vietnam, held their opening ceremony virtually and are engaging in remote learning until further notice. Le Thi Bich Thuan, Director of the Da Nang municipal Department of Education and Training, said that to supplement the online event, a TV program aired from 7 to 7.30 on Saturday, featuring documentaries and talk shows about a new academic year and congratulatory letters from city leaders.
|Students in Da Nang city, a COVID-19 hotspot, connect online to welcome a new school year. (Photo: thanhnien.vn)
Ms. Thuan told us, “Schools will upload this TV program, new school year plans, their introductions, and class lists onto their websites so that new students can find all information about their classes, teachers, and friends on these pages.”
In some other localities, students were welcomed back to school on September 1.
The Ministry of Education and Training has issued guidelines for the 2020-2021 school year, of which the main goal will be reform and quality improvement from pre-school to high school. The sector has pledged to enforce new policies to accommodate teachers and education authorities. Localities where social distancing is mandatory will continue remote learning via the Internet and television.