President Ho Chi Minh paid close attention to education. He spoke at several schools and wrote 23 letters to the education sector. He always underscored the importance of “combining study and practice” and the key role of teachers.
To carry out President Ho Chi Minh's Thought, the Party, the State, and the education sector have fundamentally renovated education to produce better citizens.
Education combines study and practice
In a letter to students on the opening of the first new academic year of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam on September 5, 1945, President Ho Chi Minh said a new education system will train useful citizens for Vietnam and maximize each person’s potential. The President said a new education system must serve the nation and people and education must derive from practical demands.
President Ho Chi Minh said knowledge is important but curricula should be appropriate to a student’s age and grade. In a letter to educators and students on October 31, 1955, he said tertiary education must combine scientific theory and practice, learn lessons from other countries and apply them to Vietnam’s reality, and materially benefit national construction.
President Ho Chi Minh emphasized that in order to obtain good academic results, the correct educational methods must be used, which will inspire students to be proactive in their studying. This will enable them to absorb knowledge more efficiently.
Associate Professor Doctor Nguyen Chi Thanh said “President Ho Chi Minh said theory must be combined with practice. Through work, we gain experience and can better evaluate theoretical knowledge.”
President Ho Chi Minh analyzed education’s role, content, and methods and proposed solutions for education reform. Collaboration between schools, families, and society was one important solution.
Ho Chi Minh's Thought applied to modern education
The Vietnamese Party and State consider education a top national priority. A resolution of the 8thParty Central Committee set guidelines for education and training development in the national industrialization and modernization process and tasks to 2000.
In November 2013, the Party issued a resolution on fundamentally and comprehensively reforming education and training. It identified education and training as a national priority and said education development should increase general knowledge and train human resources.
Education should serve socio-economic development, national defense, and technological advancement. Education reform must be open and flexible. The education sector should meet global integration requirements.
Vu Dinh Chuan, Director of Vietnam’s Upper Secondary Education Department of the Ministry of Education and Training, said “President Ho Chi Minh deemed that student-centered learning requires the teacher to be, not just a source of knowledge, but an organizer and supervisor guiding each student. The teacher should organize the student’s activities and motivate the student to seek knowledge.”
President Ho Chi Minh's Thought on combining study and practice is embodied in UNESCO’s 4 pillars of learning: learning to know, learning to do, learning to be, and learning to live together.