The school at the Buddha’s gate

Published: 07/09/2012 03:12



One hundred and twenty one students from the families with difficult conditions--would be supported up 100 percent of the tuitions and meals when studying at the Bo De Phuong Duy private school in the southern province of Long An

Gathering at the Buddha’s gate

In recent years, local residents in Thu Thua town have got familiar to the scene that Monk Thich Quang Tam of the Long Thanh Temple went to the competent agencies to fulfill the procedures to register the 100 he kept at the temple for study.

However, 121 children at the temple would study right at the temple, because a new school has been set up there.

Nguyen Ngoc Loc, Nguyen Ngoc Luong and Nguyen Ngoc Van from the former Ha Tay province in the north prove to be the happiest children at the temple. Born into a poor family, where parents separated when the children were small; the children had to experience a lot of dark days.

Their mother then went to the Central Highlands to seek jobs, bringing Vuong and Loc with herself, while Van stayed in Ha Tay with the grandmother.

However, though working hard, the mother still could not feed the children. Hearing that the Long Thanh Temple received street children, she decided to bring all the three children to the temple, asking for helping to raise them.

“The three children felt so happy when they could meet each other again after many years of separation. Being whole brothers, but they speak Vietnamese with three different accents of the northern, central and southern regions,” said Monk Ut.

“They are very obedient and disciplined,” he added.

Loc goes to the 9th grade this year, Vuong to the 7th, while Van would be a fourth grader.

The special timetable of the special school

The children at the temple follow a disciplinary timetable as if they are in the army. They get up at five am, do physical exercises then have a wash. Smaller children would be taken care by Monk Ut and elder brothers. 

They have to go to bed at 9 pm, while those, who have to do home exercises, would stay in another place. After school hours, the children here can also learn English and informatics right from the first grade. They can also learn martial arts and lion dance.

When talking about the teachers of the special school, Monk Thich Quang Tam said the teachers work there on the voluntary basis, because the pay is very modest.

The new school of the poor children has been set up in an area of 1200 square meters, including nine classrooms, two laboratories, one library and one kitchen. The total cost for building the school, estimated at 3 billion dong, was contributed by donors.

According to Monk Ut, there are 12 permanent teachers and 35 teachers working under seasonal labor contracts.

The classes at the school prove to be relatively special. There are 27 7th graders, but there are less than 10 students for the remaining graders.

Nguyen Van Dung from Binh Dinh said he feels very happy to live and study at the temple.

“I will try to learn well, so that I can grow up independent, and if I can, I will return to the temple to teach students, like the elder brothers,” Dung said.

The “elder brothers” that Dung mentioned were the children who once lived at the temple, and now teach students there. One of them is Le Thanh Tung. Ten years ago, Tung lived at the temple for three years, then studied at the Long An Pedagogical Junior College. Tung is now a secondary school teacher and regularly visits the temple where he once lived, and teaches the students there

                                                                                                                                             Source: Vietnamnet

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