Circular No.15/2003/TT-BGDDT of March 31, 2003 guiding the implementation of a number of articles of The Government’s Decree No. 18/2001/ND-CP of May 4, 2001 prescribing the setting up and operation of foreign cultural and educational establishments in Vi

THE MINISTRY OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING
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SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF VIET NAM
Independence – Freedom – Happiness
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No: 15/2003/TT-BGDDT

Hanoi, March 31, 2003

 

CIRCULAR

GUIDING THE IMPLEMENTATION OF A NUMBER OF ARTICLES OF THE GOVERNMENT’S DECREE NO. 18/2001/ND-CP OF MAY 4, 2001 PRESCRIBING THE SETTING UP AND OPERATION OF FOREIGN CULTURAL AND EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS IN VIETNAM

To implement Articles 28 and 37 of the Government’s Decree No. 18/2001/ND-CP of May 4, 2001 prescribing the setting up and operation of cultural and educational establishments in Vietnam (hereinafter referred to as Decree No. 18), the Ministry of Education and Training hereby details a number of points regarding procedures and forms of dossiers of application for the setting up and operation, the granting, extension, amendment, supplementation and withdrawal of the establishment licenses, of the representative offices, associated establishments, independent educational establishments which operate in the education and training field to participate in developing education in Vietnam as follows:

A. GENERAL PROVISIONS

I. SCOPE OF REGULATION

1. This Circular prescribes the setting up and operation of foreign educational establishments in Vietnam in order to develop preschool, general, intermediate vocational, tertiary and postgraduate education for non-profit purposes.

2. Revenues from activities of foreign educational establishments, after minusing all lawful expenses, shall be used only for investment in developing the educational cause and building infrastructural works and for spending on activities in the common interests of foreign educational establishments in Vietnam.

3. Foreign educational establishments which operate for profit purposes shall not fall under the scope of regulation of Decree No. 18 but comply with the provisions of the Law on Foreign Investment in Vietnam.

II. ON THE NAMES OF FOREIGN EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS

Foreign educational establishment in Vietnam is a common appellation of educational organizations and establishments (such as representative offices, international schools, universities, cultural and art schools) which the State of Vietnam permits overseas Vietnamese, foreigners or foreign entities (referred collectively as foreign parties) to set up, or join in setting up, and organize their operation in the educational field in Vietnam.

III. FIELDS IN WHICH THE VIETNAMESE GOVERNMENT ENCOURAGES THE OPENING OF FOREIGN EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS

Training of technicians, scientific workers and managers of high professional qualifications in the economic, technological, scientific and technical, natural science and environmental fields; specialists in the cultural, art, musical and information fields.

IV. FOREIGN EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS SHALL BE SET UP IN THE FOLLOWING FORMS: REPRESENTATIVE OFFICES, ASSOCIATED ESTABLISHMENTS AND INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENTS

1. Representative offices are units of foreign educational organizations, having the tasks of representing their organizations in promoting the formulation of projects and programs of cooperation in the educational domain, which the Vietnamese side is interested in; urging and monitoring the implementation of education cooperation agreements already signed with Vietnamese educational organizations.

2. Associated establishments are foreign educational establishments set up on the basis of international agreements to which the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is a signatory or on the basis of contracts of agreement between the foreign parties and Vietnamese educational establishments.

3. Independent establishments are foreign educational establishments which are built, organized and run by the foreign parties totally with their own funds.

V. LEGALIZATION OF PAPERS AND DOCUMENTS OF FOREIGN EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS

Before being submitted to the Ministry of Education and Training, all papers and documents (included in the dossiers of application) granted by foreign competent agencies must be legalized at the Vietnamese Ministry for Foreign Affairs or foreign-based Vietnamese diplomatic missions or consulates, except otherwise provided for by international agreements to which Vietnam is a signatory (under Article 26 of the November 13, 1990 Consular Ordinance).

B. PROVISIONS ON PROCEDURES AND DOSSIERS OF APPLICATION

I. DOSSIERS OF APPLICATION FOR PERMISSION TO SET UP (OPEN) IN VIETNAM REPRESENTATIVE OFFICES OF FOREIGN EDUCATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS

Dossiers of application for the granting of licenses to set up (open) representative offices in Vietnam shall be compiled by foreign educational organizations on the basis of meeting all the conditions specified in Clause 1, Article 5 of Decree No. 18.

Such a dossier consists of:

1. The application for the opening of a representative office, with the contents inscribed in the set form;

2. The Operation Charter or Regulation of the foreign educational organization applying for permission to set up a representative office in Vietnam;

3. Written certification of the legal person status (for foreign educational organizations), financial sources and capabilities of the foreign educational organization applying for permission to open a representative office, by the competent agency of the place where the foreign educational organization is headquartered, issued within 30 (thirty) days before it is submitted to the Ministry of Education and Training;

4. The resume of the person planned to be appointed as director of the representative office, with the certification by a competent agency;

5. A summary of the formation and development of cooperation between the applying foreign educational organization and Vietnamese educational organizations;

6. Written summaries of the cooperation programs and/or projects already agreed or planned to be signed between the applying foreign educational organization and Vietnamese educational organizations;

If the following relevant documents are available, they should be also submitted together with the dossiers for reference purposes:

7. A document introducing the foreign educational organization, with the certification by a political or social organization at the place where the foreign educational organization is headquartered;

8. The operation scheme, clearly stating the necessity and reasons for opening the representative office; the organizational model, staff, material foundations and financial sources;

9. The list and brief personal records of Vietnamese and foreigners planned to be recruited to work for the representative office;

10. Documents related to the place where the representative office is planned to be located.

II. DOSSIERS OF APPLICATION FOR PERMISSION TO SET UP ASSOCIATED ESTABLISHMENTS BETWEEN THE FOREIGN PARTIES AND VIETNAMESE PARTIES IN THE EDUCATION AND TRAINING FIELD

The dossiers of application for the granting of licenses to set up associated establishments shall be jointly compiled by the foreign and Vietnamese parties on the basis of meeting all the conditions specified in Clauses 1 and 2, Article 6 of Decree No. 18. In addition, the associated establishments in the tertiary and postgraduate education field must also satisfy the conditions specified in Appendix No. 1 enclosed herewith.

Such a dossier consists of:

1. The application for permission to set up the associated establishment, with the contents specified in the set form;

2. The contract of agreement between the associated parties with the principal contents specified in the set form;

3. The written certification of the legal person status of the associated parties, their financial sources and capabilities in the education field, issued by competent agencies within 30 days before it is submitted to the Ministry of Education and Training;

4. The operation scheme clearly stating: the necessity and reasons for association; the training or fostering objectives and contents; the organizational model; the planned teaching personnel and material foundations (including equipment and facilities in service of teaching and learning), financial sources, subjects to be enrolled and diplomas and certificates to be granted. The quality assurance mechanism of the associated parties.

5. The Organization and Operation Charter or Regulation of the associated establishment, containing the following principal contents:

a/ The tasks and powers of the establishment.

b/ Organization and management.

c/ Teaching, scientific and technological activities.

d/ Tasks and rights of teachers.

e/ Tasks and rights of learners.

f/ Property and finance.

6. A summary of the formation and development of the cooperation between the two associated parties;

7. The list and brief personal records of Vietnamese and foreigners planned to be recruited to work at the associated establishment;

8. The resume of the person planned to be appointed as director (or principal) of the associated establishment in the education field, with the certification by a competent agency.

III. DOSSIERS OF APPLICATION FOR PERMITS TO SET UP FOREIGN INDEPENDENT EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS IN VIETNAM

The dossiers of application for the granting of permits to set up foreign independent educational establishments in Vietnam shall be compiled by the foreign parties on the basis of meeting all the conditions specified in Clause 1, Article 7 of Decree No. 18.

Such a dossier consists of:

1. The application for a permit to set up an independent foreign educational establishment in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, with the principal contents specified in the set form;

2. The operation scheme, including the following contents: the operation principles and objectives; the organizational and executive system, contents of the training programs; the plan on building a contingent of lecturers, the plan on building material foundations (including equipment and facilities in service of teaching and learning), the scale of enrollment in the first year and subsequent years, enrollment sources, the training process, school fees to be collected, diplomas and certificates to be granted, and the quality assurance mechanism of the foreign educational establishment. A detailed plan on the implementation of the operation scheme;

3. The written certification of the legal person status, financial sources and capabilities, issued by the competent agency of the foreign party within 30 days before its submission to the Ministry of Education and Training;

4. The Organization and Operation Charter or Regulation of the foreign independent establishment, with the following principal contents:

a/ The tasks and powers of the establishment.

b/ Organization and management.

c/ Teaching, scientific and technological activities.

d/ Tasks and rights of teachers.

e/ Tasks and rights of learners.

f/ Property and finance.

5. A summary of the formation and development of the educational organization applying for the permit to set up the foreign independent establishment in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

6. The resume of the person expected to be appointed as director (or principal) of the independent establishment, with the certification by a competent agency;

7. Dossiers related to the location (building, land) where the foreign educational establishment is planned to be based in Vietnam.

If available, the following relevant documents should be submitted together with the dossiers for reference purposes:

8. A document introducing the foreign party, made by a political or social organization of the country which the foreign party bears its nationality;

9. The list and brief personal records of Vietnamese and foreigners planned to be recruited to work at the associated establishment;

IV. ORDER AND PROCEDURES OF APPLICATION FOR PERMITS:

1. Foreign individuals or foreign educational organizations wishing to set up representative offices, associated establishments or independent establishments to operate in the education field must each make 8 (eight) dossier sets as prescribed in Sections I, II and III of this Circular and send them to the Ministry of Education and Training (the International Cooperation Department). The dossier-receiving agency must have a book for monitoring the dossiers and give receipts thereof to the dossier submitters.

2. The Ministry of Education and Training shall assume the prime responsibility for organizing the evaluation and the gathering of opinions of the concerned ministries and branches as well as the People’s Committees of the provinces or centrally- run cities where the foreign educational establishments are to be established before deciding according to its competence or submitting to the Prime Minister for consideration and approval or disapproval.

3. Essential requirements on evaluation:

The evaluation of dossiers of application for permits to set up foreign educational establishments in Vietnam must ensure the following essential requirements:

a/ The setting up of associated or independent establishments is compatible with the education development requirements of the localities and the country and is not contrary to Vietnam’s undertakings, policies and laws.

b/ The educational programs at each educational grade or level or training level meet the Education Law’s requirements on contents and methods.

c/ The operation schemes are feasible, first of all the plans on building material foundations as well as the contingent of teachers.

4. The time limits for evaluating dossiers is prescribed as follows:

a/ For independent educational establishments and educational establishments providing tertiary and postgraduate education (specified in Clause 1, Article 9 of Decree No. 18), within 90 days after receiving the complete and valid dossiers, the dossier-receiving and -evaluating agencies must finish the evaluation thereof and submit them to the Prime Minister. Within 7 days after obtaining the Prime Minister’s opinion deciding to grant permits or notifying the refusal to grant permits, the Ministry of Education and Training shall notify in writing the applicants thereof.

b/ For education and training establishments specified in Clause 2, Article 9 of Decree No. 18, within 30 days for representative offices and 60 days for foreign educational establishments to associate in education at the preschool, general education, intermediate vocational and/or college level, the Minister of Education and Training shall consider, decide and notify the results in writing to the applicants.

c/ Where dossiers have been compiled at variance with the provisions in Section I, II or III of this Circular, the declared contents contain such errors and/or omissions as incomplete or inconsistent declarations in the dossiers’ papers, the name of the foreign educational establishment being identical to or confused with, that of another foreign educational establishment of the same type already registered in the same province or centrally-run city, conditions and dossiers of the foreign educational establishments failing to comply with the provisions in Article 5, 6 and 7 of Decree No. 18, within 20 days after receiving the dossiers, the Ministry of Education and Training must notify the applicants of the contents which need to be supplemented so as to complete the dossiers.

V. OPERATION REGISTRATION

1. Under Article 12 of Decree No. 18, within 90 days after being granted the permits, the foreign educational establishments must complete the procedures to register their operation with the People’s Committees of the provinces or centrally-run cities where they are headquartered.

2. Within 30 days after completing the operation registration procedures with the People’s Committees of the provinces or centrally-run cities where they are headquartered, the foreign educational establishments must publicize over the central and local newspapers for five consecutive issues the following contents:

a/ The name of the foreign educational establishment: representative office; the associated or independent establishment in Vietnamese or a common foreign language;

b/ The establishment permit (serial number, issuing date and agency);

c/ The full name of the director;

d/ The address of the head office, telephone and fax numbers, logo and website (if any), e-mail;

e/ Bank accounts for transactions.

3. If, within the above-said time limit, the foreign educational establishments fail to complete the operation registration procedures, they shall, depending on the seriousness of their violations, be subjected to the violation-handling forms as specified in Chapter V of Decree No. 18 or be handled according to Vietnam’s current law provisions.

4. After completing the operation registration procedures with the People’s Committees of the provinces or centrally-run cities where they are headquartered, the establishments shall deploy their operation as follows:

a/ Representative offices shall deploy their activities immediately according to the objectives, contents, scope and duration stated in their permits.

b/ Associated or independent establishments shall have to concentrate on building the contingent of administrators, teachers as well as material foundations according to the plans already registered in their operation schemes. Only after the establishments satisfy the minimum staff and material foundation conditions shall the Ministry of Education and Training issue decisions permitting them to enroll students for their first training courses. Only from then can the establishments make enrollment announcements according to the objectives, contents and scope of operation as stated in their permits.

c/ Within 12 months after completing the operation registration procedures with the People’s Committees of the provinces or centrally run cities where they are headquartered, if the foreign educational establishments fail to be organized and operate according to the approved schemes and plans, the Ministry of Education and Training shall have to propose the Prime Minister to withdraw their permits or shall withdraw their permits according to its competence.

VI. REGISTRATION OF CHANGES IN THE NAMES, HEAD OFFICES, DIRECTORS, SETTING UP OF BRANCHES, ADDITION OF FUNCTIONS, TASKS, SCOPE OF OPERATION, OR EXTENSION OF PERMITS

1. When the foreign educational establishments need to change their names, head-office addresses, directors, to set up branches, add new functions, tasks and/or scope of operation, or extend their permits (hereinafter referred collectively as alteration and supplementation), they must report to the Ministry of Education and Training and can effect such alteration and/or supplementation only after they obtain the written approvals of the Prime Minister, for establishments specified in Clause 1, Article 9 of Decree No. 18, or the written approvals of the Minister of Education and Training, for establishments not specified in Clause 1, Article 9 of Decree No. 18.

2. A dossier of registration of alteration and/or supplementation consists of:

a/ The application for alteration and/or supplementation, with the following principal contents:

– The complete name and address of the foreign educational establishment;

– The establishment permit (serial number, issuing date and agency);

– The operation registration paper (serial number, issuing date and agency);

– Objectives, contents, scope and duration of operation stated in the permit;

– Reasons for alteration and/or supplementation;

– Contents to be altered and/or supplemented.

b/ Enclosed documents to ensure the feasibility of the alteration and/or change. Specifically as follows:

– The dossier of the planned location of the new head office, for cases of office relocation;

– Resume of the expected new director, for cases of change of directors;

– The additional operation scheme, for cases of setting up branches, supplementing functions, tasks and/or scope of operation, or extending permits.

3. Upon receiving the dossiers of registration of alteration and/or supplementation from the foreign educational establishments, the Ministry of Education and Training (the International Cooperation Department) must keep a book for monitoring the dossiers and give receipts thereof to the submitting foreign educational establishments.

4. Within 30 days after receiving the written approvals of competent Vietnamese bodies, the foreign educational establishments must publicize on the central and local newspapers for five consecutive issues the permitted changes.

VII. ACTIVITY REPORTS, SUPERVISION AND INSPECTION

1. The foreign educational establishments shall have to strictly implement the reporting regime prescribed in Article 27 of Decree No. 18. The International Cooperation Department, the Education and Training Services of the provinces or centrally- run cities where the foreign educational establishments are headquartered shall have to monitor and urge the implementation of the reporting regime; receive annual activity reports; sum them up for submission to the leadership of the Ministry of Education and Training or the People’s Committees of the provinces or centrally-run cities where the foreign educational establishments are headquartered, so that they can work out plans for supervising, inspecting and evaluating the organization and operation of the foreign educational establishments.

The annual financial reports of the foreign educational establishments (in case they carry out activities with revenues) shall be sent to the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Education and Training (the Planning and Finance Department).

2. The foreign educational establishments shall have to organize regular self-supervision of their activities under the provisions in Decree No. 18, their establishment permits and Organization and Operation Charters or Regulations.

3. The departments for different educational levels and the Planning and Finance Department shall have to coordinate with the Education and Training Services and the Finance and Pricing Services of the provinces and centrally-run cities where the foreign educational establishments are headquartered in periodically supervising the professional activities and financial activities (in cases where revenues are collected) of the foreign educational establishments; evaluate their activity results, report them to the Ministry of Education and Training, the provincial/municipal People’s Committees and the Ministry of Finance; and publicize the supervision and evaluation results.

4. The inspectorates of the Ministry of Education and Training and the provincial/municipal Education and Training Services shall have to inspect the foreign educational establishments under the provisions of the Government’s Decree No. 101/2002/ND-CP of December 10, 2002 on the organization and operation of the Education Inspectorate.

VIII. ON TERMINATION OF THE OPERATION OF FOREIGN EDUCATIONAL ESTABLISHMENTS

1. At least 30 days before the representative offices, associated establishments or independent educational establishments terminate their operation at the expiry of the duration stated in their permits or at the requests of the foreign educational establishments or under the license-withdrawing decisions, the Ministry of Education and Training (the International Cooperation Department) shall have to notify the foreign educational establishments and the concerned provincial/municipal People’s Committees thereof.

2. Within 90 days after being notified of their operation termination, the foreign educational establishments must complete all related procedures, including publicizing on the central and local newspapers their operation termination, paying all debts, taxes, wages, house rentals, liquidating properties and contracts, returning their permits, seals, and sending reports to the licensing agencies and concerned competent agencies. In special cases and if it is approved by the licensing agencies, this time limit can be prolonged but not exceed one year,

IX. IMPLEMENTATION PROVISIONS

1. This Circular takes implementation effect 15 days after its publication on the Official Gazette.

2. For the foreign educational establishments operating for non-profit purposes and established with the Vietnamese Government’s permission before the promulgation of Decree No. 18, the International Cooperation Department shall have to assume the prime responsibility and coordinate with the Inspectorate of the Ministry of Education and Training in reviewing their operation conditions and establishment dossiers; request these foreign educational establishments to satisfy all the conditions and complete their dossiers as prescribed by this Circular; report such to the Minister of Education and Training to assign the concerned departments for different educational levels and the Planning and Finance Department to coordinate with the Education and Training Services and the Finance and Pricing Services of the provinces or centrally run cities where the foreign educational establishments are headquartered in monitoring and urging the foreign educational establishments to implement the reporting and supervision regimes prescribed in Section VII, Part B of this Circular.

3. If organizations and individuals of the foreign educational establishments violate the Vietnamese law provisions, the provisions of Decree No. 18 and this Circular, they shall be handled according to the Vietnamese current law provisions and the provisions in Chapter V of Decree No. 18.

The concerned units are requested to promptly report any problems they face in the course of implementation to the Ministry of Education and Training for study, amendment and supplement if necessary.

 

 

MINISTER OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING

Nguyen Minh Hien

 

APPENDIX NO. 1/DKTC

REGULATIONS ON CONDITIONS FOR ASSOCIATED TRAINING AT THE TERTIARY AND POSTGRADUATE LEVELS

I. TEACHING CONDITIONS

1.1. Teaching programs

+ Teaching programs must be compiled in such a way to enable students and trainees to grasp the basic knowledge and raise the knowledge they learned at the lower educational level or at the tertiary level; to modernize specialized knowledge. Each subject must have a detailed outline, clearly stating:

– The teaching objectives, contents and methods for each part, chapter and section.

– Lecturing and practicing timetables.

– The list of reference materials, which must be available at the universities’ libraries in Vietnam.

– Requirements for assignments, essays, regular exams, and final exams of subjects.

– The full names, academic titles and positions of foreign lecturers and Vietnamese facilitators.

1.2. Lecturers, facilitators, translators and interpreters

– For the tertiary education programs, foreign lecturers must have at least tertiary university diplomas in the majors they will teach and have worked for at least three years in the domains on which they will lecture; for the postgraduate training programs, lecturers must be doctors or doctors of science, associate professors or professors, and have worked for at least five years in the domains of the training majors.

– Before foreign lecturers entering Vietnam for teaching, they must send their academic records, teaching and reference materials relevant to the framework programs already agreed upon when signing written agreements or association contracts.

– Where lectures need to be interpreted, the training establishments should arrange interpreters who are knowledgeable of the majors so that they can help trainees to understand lectures or help trainers to respond to trainees’ questions in the teaching process.

2. Forms of association

2.1 Associated training with diplomas awarded by foreign universities

– University students must be trained according to the training programs being applied at the foreign educational establishments in the host foreign countries.

– Master students must have the opportunity to study at the overseas establishments of the associated universities for at least six months at the end of the program or attend short-term training courses and defend their dissertations in a foreign language.

– Doctoral students must have the opportunity to participate in researches at the laboratories of foreign universities in the intertwining form under the guidance of co-supervisors and must prepare and defend their theses in a foreign language required by their universities.

2.2. Associated training with diplomas signed by both universities

– The framework programs shall be formulated by the two involved partners and submitted to the Ministry of Education and Training for approval.

– At least 50 of subjects must be taught by foreign lecturers and students are encouraged to defend their dissertations or theses in a foreign language.

2.3. Associated training with diplomas signed by Vietnamese universities

– The framework programs shall be compiled according to the regulations of the Ministry of Education and Training.

– At least 20 of subjects are taught by foreign teachers.-

 

 

MINISTER OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING

Nguyen Minh Hien

 

 

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