A notice board hung over the entrance door of the building at No. 97 Nguyen Van Troi Street in Phu Nhuan district of HCM City, on which one would see some handwriting words that parents should contact the police to report the case and ask for help to demand for their money back.

The faint hope

Ho Tuan Anh from Binh Thanh district said that on November 10, when he accessed to Facebook, he saw a message from a foreign teacher who informed about the shutting down of Melior School in Vietnam and advised him to come to the school to demand money back.

However, Melior has completely disappeared. Anh tried to contact the school’s leaders via emails and got the reply that the school was trying to settle the problem as soon as possible.

Anh said he has paid tuition for the whole training course, including the English skill training worth 15,000 dollars. A friend of Anh’s has also paid tuition worth some 70 million dong.

A lot of parents and students flocked to the building at No. 97 Nguyen Van Troi Street every day, hoping that they would meet some leaders of the school to take back the tuitions.

The noteworthy thing is that the disappearance of the Melio Business School is not a surprise at all. Prior to that, the Ministry of Education and Training two times took inspection tours to the school and gave warnings about the school’s problems.

Government agencies too slow in intervening in the case

Melior Business School two times in the last consecutive years violated the regulations on the enrolment activities, while it did not get the permission from the competent agencies.

At first, in April 2012, the education ministry imposed the fine on Melior School and requested Melior to stop enrolling students for the training courses organized under the mode of joint educational programs.

In a document released by the MOET, the ministry requested the city’s authorities to instruct district localities to supervise the inspection agencies. A lot of drastic measures were also applied to stop the “problematic schools.”

However, it’s still unclear how the instruction has been implemented. It’s only obvious that violation cases were still found in the next inspection tours

The education ministry’s inspectors have found that Melior, together with other three companies, including ERC Vietnam, IFA and Sibme.

In October 2012, the education ministry even sent a dispatch to the HCM City authorities, requesting to instruct the city’s competent agencies to deal with the violations in the educational sector.

However, only on November 9, or three days before Melior’s disappeared, did the education department send documents to relevant departments to consult with the them about the revoking of licenses granted before to the four companies.

A senior official of the education ministry affirmed that if the education department and relevant agencies had intervened in the case earlier, Melior would have not been able to escape from Vietnam so easily.

In related news, on November 13, the HCM City Department of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs informed that it would revoke the operation licenses from the other two training establishments, namely ERC and Sibme.

By Le Huyen - VietnamNet Bridge - November 17, 2012