The Field Education System (FES) started in Cameroon in 1988. Prior to this time, SIL village teams had the sole responsibility for their children’s education. Each family ordered their own curriculum and taught their own children. Eventually, some parents started asking for help. Specifically they requested a unified curriculum and organized class times during which their children could have a classroom experience with their peers.
The Joint Learning Sessions (JLS) were created to meet the following goals:
• Provide opportunities for children to interact academically with peers and with teachers other than their own parents.
• Provide parents with opportunities to interact with other teaching parents and professional educators.
• Provide more teaching resources and a greater variety than any one family could provide on its own.
The program grew in 2003-2004 with the construction of the new Educational Resource Center (ERC). As elementary schooling options diminished for families in Yaoundé, there was an expressed need by Yaoundé-based families to have better full-time educational options available for their children. This would allow mothers the opportunity to help fill other roles in the branch. Teachers were recruited and the co-op program, then known as the Parent Run School (PRS), began in 2007 with three teachers covering grades 1-6. In 2013, PRS changed their name to The Greenhouse: A Learning Center for Missionary Children. While The Greenhouse seeks to recruit teachers to serve, times arise when parents are responsible for teaching children in the classroom.
We are blessed to have a beautiful two-story facility that was built in 2003-2004 by Wycliffe Associates that includes four spacious classrooms, a very large library (over 20,000 books on the computer system) and offices. We also have large grassy play areas, a playground, basketball/volleyball court and a pavilion.