Burundi is a republic in East Africa. It has an essentially rural and agricultural economy. From the cultural viewpoint, Burundi is basically a monolingual nation, Kirundi, the national language, being supplemented by French as the language of administration and teaching at intermediate and higher levels. It achieved independence in 1962 after 40 years of Belgian colonial rule.
From the latter the country has inherited a number of characteristics as far as education is concerned. These include an elitist, academicoriented school system, a very centralized structure of education administration, a fragmented and weak teaching profession, teacher education being organized at different levels and admitting the least able candidates.