Basic and inadequate, but these items play a major factor in allowing poor ethnic children having access to education. In these last days of the year, The Cosmopolite Guru would like to take you to the very edge of the remote areas of Vietnam to have a glance at the living standards and education quality of these poor children, via the prominent stories recorded by VnExpress, a Vietnamese national online magazine. The story told by those photos would definitely leave some serious and bitter thoughts on the inadequate life of the ethnic minority and raise question about the effectiveness of government megaprojects that cost Vietnamese taxpayers trillions of Vietnam Dong, or billions of US dollars on improving the life and education of ethnic minority groups.

According to UNDP statistics, ethnic minority high school students in Vietnam have to travel an average of 17.6 km (10.9 miles) to reach school. Only 41.8 percent of ethnic people make it to high school, according to a report of the National Assembly’s Ethnic Council.

Going to school in the mountains requires great effort on the part of students as well as their families.


VnExpress chose nine typical objects and images connected with the life of a high school student and recorded them at schools in Hoang Su Phi District, Ha Giang Province in the far northeast of Vietnam.

1. Plastic flip-flops