40 HCMC Apax centers to be suspended

By Viet Duc, Le Nguyen   April 13, 2023 | 03:47 pm PT
40 HCMC Apax centers to be suspended
An Apex Leaders center in HCMC's District 6 is closed, March 15, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Le Nguyen
The office head of the Ho Chi Minh City education department said Thursday that 40 out of 41 Apax Leaders English centers may be suspended.

Ho Tan Minh, office head of the municipal Department of Education and Training, said Apax Leaders has 41 approved centers in HCMC, but a surprise inspection at 5 centers on February 15 found that only one center in Phu Nhuan District was open for business.

"The non-public education facility management division would discuss the suspension of 40 out of 41 Apax Leaders centers. Even though they have closed down, the department would still issue the suspension to prevent the centers from reopening without reporting to authorities," Minh said.

The one center in Phu Nhuan District would remain open, but would be fined due to several violations, he added.

On April 9, Apax Leaders said it reopened three centers in HCMC. But Minh said the education department had yet to receive any of the required official reports from the company regarding the reopening of the centers.

Minh said 1,717 people have filed requests for Apax to return their tuition fees. The department has sent relevant documents regarding the company’s activities to the police.

Apax Leaders, an English education center network for children, was founded in 2016. It claims to have 120 centers across Vietnam with around 120,000 students. The company claims some 15,000 of those students are in HCMC.

But September 2022, the company has been accused by several parents of providing subpar services qualities. Large groups of disgruntled customers have been demanding tuition refunds ever since.

Several meetings between HCMC parents and Nguyen Ngoc Thuy, the company’s chairman, as well as Nguyen Anh Tuan, the general director, were held in March and April. On April 9, Apax Leaders drew up a roadmap for tuition refunds for parents who no longer want their children to study at the centers.

The tuitions are expected to be refunded between June this year and April next year, according to the roadmap.

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