11 September 2017

Cameroon: Chombeng Festus, Chalk in Hand

The English Language Tutor and Senior Discipline Master with GTHS Buea narrated his extra commitment to foster children's education.

The English Language was the first catch-up lesson for students at Government Technical High School Buea last Saturday. "This Saturday morning I have been teaching English Language to my students, particularly the eight parts of speech, for catch-up classes", Chombeng Festus told Cameroon Tribune that came investigating on 9 August, 2017. Serving dual functions as English Language Tutor and Senior Discipline Master with GTHS Buea, Chombeng Festus is experiencing a change from his former daily routine. "I have, additionally, to be in school on Saturdays from 8am to 12 noon for catch-up classes as instructed by my hierarchy" he explained. "The few students who showed up today were enthusiastic with the class and I believe the others will follow suit next week in their numbers", the devoted teacher spoke. Chombeng began his lesson by introducing the parts of speech and started with the noun. The types of nouns and when nouns are used constituted this first lesson of Saturday classes in GTHS Buea. It was a matter of drilling the children that the noun in language is a word that refers to a person, place, thing, event, substance or quality. 'This is the programme of last year and it will carry on till November when we give the students a diagnostic test and see whether those who perform well will remain in the class. Those found wanting may have to go back to repeat their classes. From mid-November we are going to introduce the work scheme for this academic year", the instructor explained. Asked if this catch-up programme would not affect this year's scheme of work now designed for two terms instead of three, Chombeng replied, "We are going to make sure that even when these catch-up classes end we can still be using Saturdays to catch-up for this year's work too. Does this make more work for the teacher? Chombeng affirms it as true but adds; "The interest of our students is at heart and so we can sacrifice without remorse" He went further to say "It is going to be a difficult year but I think as a servant of the State I can sacrifice some of my private time to make sure that the students gain and follow up their academic progress. It is also gratifying if the general public can gain more serenity by this action. For us in technical schools it is not much of a problem because we normally close at 4pm. And so we can add one hour to 5pm for our own catch-up programme" For the first week of the 2017-18 academic year, teachers and students alike were taking to new habits. First, they have to invest more time, chew faster and swallow much to meet up with lost courses. This is to regain the two terms vanished last year in the name of ghost schools that started haunting in November, 2016. The Teachers have till mid-November to quash last year lessons before tackling the new academic year work. To accomplish this, instructions from the Ministry of Secondary Education are clear to keep students and Teachers busier. They have to employ additional one hour daily from Monday to Friday and to engage Saturday from 8am to 12noon for corrective lessons.

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