Nelson Mandela once said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” And in this changing era, it might just be our answer to the systemic metamorphosis of our motherland to greater and bigger heights. One such person who understands this great responsibility we have towards our children is NANCY MBUGUA, the school principal of the newly opened Nairobi Leadership Academy a girls’ high school located in Nairobi, Kenya.
The school is one of the few springing up all over the world that is joining up with the tech rush by introducing touch screens to replace the traditional blackboards and whiteboards. They are still following the country’s curriculum, popularly known as 8-4-4*, however, they are taking it a step further. Each student is required to take a Leadership Class (LC) where they will get a deep understanding of leadership principles and its manifestations – with focus on Servant Leadership and 5 transformational leadership essentials: Character, Service to all, Effective communication, Teamwork and Building partnerships.
On top of this, they also offer an entrepreneurship program where the Academy will partner with individuals and corporates to offer mentorship and managerial advice. The students will be required to draw start-up business plans and present them to a board (and/or financiers). They will also be given real life predicaments through which they will be guided to activate business and social entrepreneurial ideas and opportunities that will address the situation.
“Leadership and entrepreneurship curriculum will be engrained into the 8-4-4 which is a great curriculum, but the things they learn, they never get to practice and put them into real life experiences,” says Mbugua. And she echoes the sentiments of teaches across the globe where the issue of young adults getting into the professional world have no real idea or skills to tackle the challenges they face.
According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), it is estimated that each year of real education a child receives (not repeating a grade) could increase his/her individual earnings by 10% and lift annual GDP globally by 0.37%. This revolutionary academy is taking charge in ensuring the Kenyan people’s future, and by extension, Africa’s future on the global economic scene.
The Academy first opened its doors on 4th February 2016. Applicants are selected after filling in an online form. These are reviewed by a committee that score each application based on the applicant’s history and potential. 200 slots are available every year.
Similar schools of its kind exist such as the ever famous African Leadership Academy, and Nova Academies, who also have a boys’ highs school in Nairobi sharing much of the same revolutionary teaching techniques such as the above-mentioned.
* 8-4-4 System of education, was adopted in 1985 and implemented by former president of Kenya, Daniel Arap Moi. It employs 8 years of primary education, 4 years of secondary education and 4 years of university education. With the introduction of the 8-4-4 system CPE became KCPE (Kenya Certificate of Primary Education) while KCE became the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE).
Find out more about the Academy at nla.co.ke and follow them on Facebook.
Credits: nla.co.ke and unesco.org
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