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

Created in September 1997, Lycée de Tohoun was housed in buildings constructed by the teachers and students themselves. Such buildings are constructed from locally available trees and thatch and called "apatames". Each year, two new apatames have had to be constructed, since the Lycée began with two tracks (math/science and language/literature) of tenth graders who have gone to the next grade while new classes of tenth graders have been added. In the Fall of 1998 there were 76 students and 143 students were enrolled for the 1999-2000 academic year.

The picture above left shows two of the completed apatames, with the construction of a new one progressing in the background. The picture to the right is a closer view of the construction process. The man with the briefcase to the right in the picture is the school's Principal.
Construction of more permanent buildings started in December 1999 on a site about a mile away. The new building will provide space for four classes and offices. A second nearby building will house additional classes when it is completed. In the meanwhile two apatames will be built on the site. Construction of the first new classroom building is complete and mango and teak trees were planted along the entry way in June. 11th and 12th grade classes will be held in the new classrooms starting in July, 2000.
The Principal is to the left and the construction site watchman to the right in this photo. The first building was near completion as of February 2000, with well-digging and landscaping remaining to be done. During the Spring, construction and roofing were completed and the dirt road in front of the new lycée was bull-dozed and regraded. The principal is in the process of applying for funds to build 60 more desks or "table-bancs" for his students.

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. Anyone interested in contributing funds or donating materials should contact Susan White

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