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    Country Name:
    Conventional Long Form: Togolese Republic                   1.0
    Conventional Short Form: Togo
    Location: Western Africa, between Benin and Ghana
    Population: 5,548,702
    Ethnic Groups:
    99% African (37 different tribes)
    The largest and most important are Ewe, Mina, and Kabre. European and Syrian-Lebanese comprise less than 1%.
    French is the official language. Ewe and Mina are spoken in the south and Kabye and Dagomba are spoken in the north.
    Togo's economy depends heavily on both commercial agriculture and subsistence agriculture. These two types of agriculture provide employment for 65% of the labor force. Cotton is the most important cash crop. Togo is the world's fourth largest producer of phosphate. Attempts are being made to reform the economy, encourage foreign investment, and bring revenues in line with spending. Togo is working to implement a debt reduction plan.
    phosphate mining, agricultural processing, cement, handicrafts, textiles, beverages
    Agriculture: coffee, cocoa, cotton, yams, cassava (tapioca), corn, beans, rice, millet, sorghum, livestock; fish
    French Togoland became Togo in 1960. General Gnassingbe EYADEMA was installed as the military ruler in 1967. He continued to rule into the 21st century until his death in 2005. He was succeeded by his son, Faure GNASSINGBE, who is still the current ruler. Togo has been in the spotlight from international organizations for human rights abuses and is plagued by political unrest. Currently, most aid to Togo remains frozen; however, some organizations began to send aid, once again, to Togo in 2004. This aid is dependent upon Togo expanding opportunities for political opposition and the liberalization of portions of the economy.
    Family Life
    Western influences have filtered into the towns of Togo. This is evident in the modern houses and facilities. Much of the countryside remains untouched by this influences. Traditional mudbrick homes and communal wells are still a part of the rural areas. Togolese life centers on the extended family.
    School System
    Togo's compulsory education begins at the age of 5 and continues until the age of 15. Students begin Primary School at the age of 5 and attend until they are 11 years old. At the end of this time, they receive an elementary certificate. Students attend the First Cycle Secondary starting at 11 and continuing until the age of 15. They attend for 4 years and receive a certificate at the end of this time.
    Other students may attend Technical Secondary. This program also lasts for 4 years and a certificate is awarded at the end of this time. The next program is the Second Cycle Secondary, which lasts for 3 years. Students begin at age 15 and complete the program at age 18. They are awarded a diploma at this time. Paralleling this is the Technical Program. It is also 3 years long running from age 15 to age 18. A diploma is awarded at its completion. (Information taken from IAU, World Higher Education Database (WHED).
    Classroom Applications
    • Professionals should address family members formally. Because of the family structure, when addressing student needs it is best to utilize the strong support of family.

    • If a student feels intimated when asked questions, his or her response might be limited. The teacher may then conclude that the student has poor expressive language skills. This is NOT the case.

    • Professionals should remember that some children learn best when interpersonal interaction is fostered rather than independence. Encouragement, affection, and praise are highly affective.

    • Some students learn best through listening instead of visually. Also, incorporating African music, literature, art and history into learning activities has helped to enhance learning.

    Avoid asking personal and direct questions during the first meeting with some students. Questions may be taken offensively. For example, asking questions like: 'Can you tell me about your family?' can be offensive because the student does not know you well.
Last Modified on January 4, 2013