Baraka Marawi kenya, 17
project: Mwalimu Information System
basic human NEEDS: EDUCATION
Theme Song: “Love Yours” by J Cole
When Baraka was in the eighth grade, his national exams were postponed due to a teacher strike that lasted months. Growing up in Kenya, teacher strikes occurred frequently and hindered the education of Baraka and his peers. Baraka learned from his physics teacher about the time-consuming, arduous challenges teachers faced to create lesson plans since many didn’t have access to syllabi, teaching aids and course books. Teachers were also responsible for tasks outside of the classroom such as preparing large documents for inspections from the Teachers Service Commission. They were also required to lead extracurricular activities, keeping track of all students’ activity on top of their academic performance. Baraka created Mwalimu Information System, an app for teachers at the primary, secondary and university level to ease their intense workload and raise awareness for teachers’ needs.
The app’s features include access to teaching materials, as well as a faster digital method to prepare for inspections and mobile storage of records, both of which are currently done entirely using hard copy documents. After a pilot run in his school, the teachers continue to use the app because it has eased their workload. Baraka plans to officially release Mwalimu Information System this year to approximately 2,000 teachers, and soon after, the remaining hundreds of thousands of teachers throughout Kenya. He believes Mwalimu Information System will impact the educational system throughout Kenya, the continent of Africa, and eventually the world.