HCMC requires Apax Leaders to fulfill tuition fee payment commitments

By Nhat Le   January 30, 2024 | 11:26 pm PT
HCMC requires Apax Leaders to fulfill tuition fee payment commitments
Parents surround an Apax Leaders center in Phu Nhuan District, March 5, 2024. Photo by VnExpress/HN
HCMC has tasked the Department of Education and Training to work with Apax Leaders, demanding the fulfillment of their commitment to repay tuition fees owed to parents.

Last week, the office of the HCMC People's Committee issued a notification of conclusions drawn by vice chairman Duong Anh Duc regarding the operations of non-public educational institutions.

This includes Apax Leaders' tuition fee debts to parents and their continuous requests to postpone repayment.

Duc instructed the education department, in coordination with relevant units, to work with the leadership of Apax Leaders, a chain of English language centers for children, demanding them to fulfill their commitments, devise a remedial plan for the damages, and take responsibility towards the students.

Moreover, this department, along with the Department of Planning and Investment, the Tax Bureau, and the HCMC Social Insurance, are to assess the conditions for Apax Leaders' continued operation.

Duc requested a compilation of information and advisory on a definitive resolution to be made public. These matters must be reported to the People's Committee by Feb. 10.

The HCMC People's Committee leadership also tasked the police to enhance security and order at locations with potential safety and public order risks related to Apax Leaders.

Apax Leaders has been licensed since 2016. According to its website, it has about 120 centers nationwide, with approximately 120,000 students.

In 2020 and 2021, many parents paid for their children's English classes at Apax Leaders, only for the courses to be disrupted due to center closures.

After several negotiations, last March, they were divided into two groups with different debt repayment schedules.

Many parents from the first group have already received full refunds through three installments from June to August 2023.

The second group was promised a tuition refund in five installments, each 20%, scheduled from October 2023 to April 2024.

However, Apax failed to honor this commitment. Hundreds of people gathered at the center in Phu Nhuan district to demand repayment in mid-October last year.

Apax then proposed a new repayment schedule extending to the end of 2025, before announcing last month their inability to pay.

Ho Tan Minh, Chief of the Office of the Department of Education and Training, stated that in late December 2023, Apax Leaders proposed a plan to use 20% of the profits from their operational centers to repay the tuition fees, starting no later than October 2024.

Currently, Apax Leaders has only two operational centers in Phu Nhuan and District 6. The company also owes salaries to teachers and staff, as well as rental fees for these two centers.

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