The Anglophone Problem – Education and Training
This section of the problem definition outlines, from tertiary to primary education (academic and professional), what was inherited from the federal period, 1961-1972, details how the status has been systematically and deliberately eroded by La Republique du Cameroun, and the adverse impact that that systemic dismantling has had on the West Cameroonian .
The Anglophone (West Cameroon) educational system was typically structured to mirror the UK education system from Primary (6 years), Secondary (5 years), High School (2 years) and Tertiary Education (post High School). The Primary education leads to a first school leaving certificate (FSLC), the Secondary to the General Certification of Education (GCE) Ordinary level and the High school leads to the Advanced level certificate (“A” level) while the Tertiary takes various forms depending the option chosen after high school.
- Tertiary Education
This is where the adverse impact of the systematic and deliberate dismantling has been felt the most by West Cameroonians. This is very significant as it is the gateway to the working and business life that has shaped the last half century to put the West Cameroonian at a severe disadvantage.
- What we inherited
West Cameron was supposed to have 2 initial universities which were incubated as colleges – The Cameroon College of Arts, Science and Technology. One was based in Kumba in the SW Province and the other in Bambili in the NW Province. The understanding was to evolve these into fully fledged universities with faculties spread over the territory of West Cameroon.
Professional schools were created to ensure the training of professionals needed for the development of West Cameroon.
- The main Teacher Training College in Bambili
- The school of Posts & Telecommunications in Buea
- Public Works Schools
- Schools of Public Administration
- Nursing Schools
- Current Eroded Status
- The Cameron Colleges of Arts Science and Technology were downgraded into ‘Lycées’ – The French equivalent of Sixth form, instead of being evolved into tertiary institutions of higher learning –such as the British Polytechnic as was initially envisaged.
- The main Teacher Training College in Bambili became an annex to the Teacher training college in Yaoundé and the college in Yaoundé became a Higher Teacher’s Training College. The center in Bambili was thus relegated to being secondary to that in Yaounde
- The school of Posts & Telecommunications in Buea became an annex and a Higher School of P&T was opened in Yaoundé. This represented a relegation to playing a secondary/support status.
- Public works schools, schools of public administration and nursing schools followed the same pattern.
- All Entrance exams into the professional higher institutions of learning are in French with a syllabus based on the Baccalaureate. The English educational system was thus assimilated into the French version post high school.