Brief History

Know Us Better

Phases Gone Through

The Presbyterian College of Education began mainly as a Seminary (Akropong Seminary) with the core mandate to equip teachers with sound basic education and sound attitudes necessary for living exemplary lives. Strict discipline was key to their training and this reflected in their lifestyles.

The name Akropong Seminary was similar to the Seminary Institute in Basel, Switzerland which was also started in July 1816. Both institutions were founded by the Basel Evangelical Society, for the training of men to become teachers and preachers of the Gospel among heathens in different lands.

The Basel Evangelical Society (Evanglisches Missions Gesellschaft, Basel) which was set up in 1815 had certain unique characteristic features embodied in its constitution:

  1. The living factor that moved all the members was pietism – the doctrine which insists that faith is not merely an intellectual grasp of the pure and true teachings of the Word, but transformation of life based on those teachings and effected through conscious spiritual exercise.
  2. Much importance was attached to the influence of the personality of the men at the helm of affairs rather than to the avowed purity of the doctrines they held.
  3. It was not a product of a Church like the Wesleyan Methodist Missionary and the Church Missionary Societies which sprang from established churches (Methodist and Anglican respectively). Yet like these societies, it had its antecedent: the Basel Missionary Society sprang directly from the spirit of pietism advocated by Spener and Francke nearly a hundred years before.

The achievement of the Basel Mission Society was made possible by the efforts of the missionaries in two directions at the beginning of the period 1843-50. The first was the careful selection of the Africans whom Widmann and his colleagues admitted into the seminary at Akropong on July 3, 1848 and at Osu where another one was opened in 1850 which, in 1855 was transferred to, and merged with the one at Akropong (KristofoSenkekafo, August 1915). The second was the mastery of the Twi and Ga languages which the missionaries, in time, reduced into writing and used as the medium for the spread of the Word of God and of formal education.

In 1850, at a meeting of the European missionaries at Akropong, a decision was taken which laid down the following rules for selecting candidates for admission into the Teachers’ Seminary.