Oct 31, 2012

Vietnam - Parents besiege consulting firm to demand money back

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The office of a Ho Chi Minh City-based educational consulting firm in Binh Duong, the city’s neighboring province, was crowded over the weekend as many parents gathered there to reclaim what was theirs: deposits to book places for their children at Canadian schools.

Those parents paid the Atlantic International Education and Training Joint Stock Company, headquartered in HCMC’s District 1, US$4,000 to $10,000 more than one year ago in the hope that their kids would receive admission offers from their desired schools in Canada.

Contrary to Atlantic’s promise of such offers, they have received nothing since the payment.

Thinking they had been tricked by the company, the parents launched a “search” for the director, Mai Xuan Quang, but failed to find him until Saturday, when he managed to ask for a delay to pay them back.

Quang told Tuoi Tre newspaper that the firm is struggling with paperwork as Canada has just changed its policy for international students following the appointment of the new Consul General to Vietnam in the southern city.

The Canadian schools his firm is working with demanded a down payment before issuing a letter of acceptance, he explained on being asked about the deposits, adding that he will check with his accountants about the admission offers.

But Tuoi Tre has learned that Canada has not changed its policy for international students, and Canadian schools often send an offer letter to successful applicants before collecting any payment from them.


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