Minister of Education and Training Pham Vu Luan on April 14 met his Singaporean counterpart Heng Swee Keat to discuss the operations of the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organisation (SEAMEO), as well as ways to foster bilateral cooperation in education.

Luan, who is President of the SEAMEO Council for the 2013-2015 tenure, is visiting Singapore from April 13-15 for the first time since he took office as education minister.

During the meeting, the two ministers talked of a number of SEAMEO’s multilateral operations, such as a post-2015 education agenda for Southeast Asia, activities in 2014 and 2015 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the organisation and the group’s affiliation with other education groups in other regions.

Minister Luan highly valued the support of the Singaporean Government and its Ministry for Education in facilitating the operational efficiency of the SEAMEO Regional Language Centre (SEAMEO REL) in Singapore, contributing to training English teachers for SEAMEO member countries, including Vietnam.

Within the framework of the education agreement between the Vietnamese and Singaporean Ministries of Education signed on April 25, 2007, the Singaporean side has assisted Vietnam in upgrading English teaching methods for high school teachers at the SEAMEO RELC.

By the end of 2011, as many as 10 training course has been organised for 300 Vietnamese teachers.

The Minister proposed that Singapore continue helping train English teachers for Vietnam, and holding more conferences to share the country’s experience with Vietnamese experts and lecturers in the fields of biotechnology, logistics, e-commerce and university and college management.

Vietnam is keen on learning Singapore’s experience in applying information technology in teaching, he said, adding that more joint activities and student exchange programmes should be conducted.

Minister Luan also affirmed that Vietnam is eager to study the education model of Singapore, as it is working towards comprehensive education reform.

Heng Swee Keat said he believes that the Vietnam-Singapore close education partnership will continue playing an important role in the development of bilateral ties between the two countries.

The same day, the Vietnamese Minister also visited the Crescent Girls’ School, one of the 13 excellent-rated schools in Singapore .

SEAMEO, a trans-governmental organisation in Southeast Asia , was established in 1965. Its members consist of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor Leste and Vietnam.-VNA

SEAMEO has 20 regional centres and a network to conduct its research and training programmes in different areas including education, science and culture.