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A New High School, Lycée de Tohoun, in Tohoun, Moyen-Mono Préfecture

Created in September 1997, Lycée de Tohoun was initially housed in buildings constructed by the teachers and students themselves. Such buildings are constructed from locally available trees and thatch and called "apatames".The picture to the left (Fall 1999) shows the construction process. Today the Lycée has four new classrooms, two new offices, two apatames that require yearly maintenance, and a temporary teacher's room and bicycle garage. There are nine teachers, two administrators, one secretary, and a watchman.

The new high school under construction is shown to the right. (Jan. 2000) The school is sited near the top of a hill to the North of Tohoun. Many students and teachers arrive by bicycle and despite the increased traffic, the area retain somes of its rural tranquility. Peasants continue to traverse the area on their way to remote farms, palm oil trees, or their fields.
Construction of more permanent buildings started in December 1999 on a site about a mile out of town atop a peaceful hill. The new building provides space for four classes and offices and was completed in July, 2000. A second nearby building will house additional classes when it is completed. The dirt road in front of the new lycée was bull-dozed and regraded, a wooden bridge constructed, and a soccer field levelled. The administrators are shown entering a new classroom for the first time.
Books and equipment for the school are still being gathered. Maps, technical and reference books, laboratory equipment, sports equipment are in short supply. There is currently no on-site source of electricity, but a generator, making possible use of other powered equipment, is hoped for. The Proviseur arranged for funding to build 60 more desks or "table-bancs" to be made from locally harvested teak trees.
The Proviseur stands in front of his new lycée. (Jan. 2001) During the Lycéee's first year at its new site students planted mango trees, built latrines, and smoothed the soccer field. Because a well has yet to be dug, students carry buckets of water for drinking and watering the plants. A local woman prepares fried dough and other treats for the students during recess.

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