Interview with the Principal of HCIC, Yaounde

Interview with the Principal of HCIC, Yaounde


How are activities moving on the campus after two months of school resumption in Cameroon?

Before reopening, I had a lot of anxiety due to COVID-19 which is affecting not just Cameroon but the whole world. I was wondering if, with the presence of these children who are coming from far and near, we are going to have a COVID-19 free and safe environment but thank God that I feel so grateful that as of this moment, we have not had any issue with regard to the pandemic. All the barrier measures put in place are being implemented and after the first month of a peaceful stay on campus, the children proved that they are all well and safe. 

The second doubt and fear were with regard to studies because after spending over six months in the house, it was very normal that the students will go a step or two backward as far as academics is concern. The administration and the staff have done their best because the six months or more at home have not created any negative impact as far as the academic life of the children is concern. 

We work day and night with them because they are with us 24/24 to ensure that slow learners improved. Until now, we are grateful that everything is going on well and a few weeks from now, students will be going back home for their Christmas break, healthy, and safe, and growing academically.

As far as the health pandemic is concern, Has HCIC registered any case of the coronavirus.

No, until now and I am sure that we shall all be safe to the end of the academic year. 

What measures have the school taken to ensure that the environment is safe and free from COVID-19?

We are a boarding school and it has been actually very easy to manage them. Before classes resume, we encouraged them to take the COVID-19 test because we know that we are an international college with students from far and near. When they brought in their test results, all of them were negative. In the first two weeks in school, we did intensive precautions. In the third week, we did observation and until now, we didn’t see any sign or symptom on the child suffering from COVID-19. 

We had very few with malaria. The feeding program and other measures that we have put in place given the fact that we are a boarding school makes it very easy to manage the pandemic. We, therefore, remain free and save. We have very few teachers who come from outside and right at the gate, measures are been taken to ensure that they come in safe and right in school, measures are taken to ensure the safety of all. 

How can you access the performances of the children after their sequence evaluation?

First, in HCIC, we are sure that nobody is dull. We have slow learners very well and we are quite aware. With the 25 and above staff in the campus, we work with the children, day in, day out. Those slow learners are being helped after their regular classes to upgrade and update them to better understand what they studied in class. 

We encourage each staff member to be an academic coach to students or group of students and because you are a coach to these students, we are sure that they will follow up these children, encourage them and check where they have difficulties, and get in contact with persons who can best help them. The first evaluation that we had wasn’t super good following our own standard but was very good. 

Some parents were very impressed and we were also very impressed with the results. Some students needed just to be coach and encourage so that they keep striving to produce the best that is in them. 

What are some of the challenges you are facing since the school year started and how are you overcoming them?

It was very strange that last week I made a comment with some of the staff members that it is very difficult to believe that this term is ending without any major crisis. I just want to think that all that we have done to keep the environment friendly for learning has helped the children and will continue to help the children. The quality of the teachers we have is also good. They are well paid, they are devoted and they offer the best so the best also can come out from the children. That is why we have continued to have the kind of results that we have. 

Can we say that despite the late start of the academic year, HCIC will attain all its academic objectives?

We are sure. Last year when classes were interrupted due to COVD-19, when they came back, we worked so hard and they were able to excel in their exams. Therefore, health pandemic or no health pandemic, our only force is to see that we bring the best out of these children. We create a healthy environment and from there the children are able to produce the best. Thank you to the teachers, to parents who have not disturb this year, and to students also.

What message do you have for teachers, parents, and students?

For the teachers and students, I will continue to encourage them to keep up the collaborative and hardworking spirit. For the parents, I am not going to discourage them but the fact that we didn’t have visiting has made this term one of the best terms we have ever had in Holy Cross. I think and hope they will understand with us that visiting brings a lot of distractions and disturb the children. If we don’t have visiting in the future, I will be very happy and the school will be very happy too. We will continue to do very well in academics.

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