CO-FOUNDER, ELIMU SHOP
Bold Idea: Launch a platform for African teachers to share lesson plans and high-quality resources, improve their skills, and collaborate on innovative solutions for 21st century teaching and learning, through a financially sustainable social business.
Path to Metis: Lilian’s experiences as a learning designer, teacher, and instructional coach in all types of Kenyan schools equipped her with a deep understanding of the challenges facing Kenyan teachers. She began her career teaching for 11 years at Keveye Girls High School in rural Kenya, where she saw firsthand the obstacles facing students including early marriages, teenage pregnancy, high drop-out rates due to lack of fees, and lack of successful role models. She then taught at Alliance Girls High School, the top performing public school in Kenya, where she saw what outcomes are possible with higher quality instruction. As an Instructional Coach at Dignitas, she supported leaders and teachers in low-fee private schools in informal settlements to improve their school quality. As a Learning Designer and Lead Teacher at Nova Pioneer, she supported the launch of the chain’s first mid-fee private school in Kenya and designed a model that incorporated blended learning, an inquiry-based approach, and project-based learning. Over the course of her career, Lilian saw how the teaching profession does not have a high status in Kenya, and teachers are given minimal support to innovate and little recognition for their hard work. In June 2017, she co-founded Elimu Shop to solve this problem. Elimu is a platform that enables teachers to create, sell, and buy high-quality resources. For a small monthly fee, teachers can access the platform for support as they innovate approaches to teaching and learning. Elimu is in seed stage and is currently building its online platform, fundraising, and marketing to users in Kenya, with plans to expand across the continent. Lilian is currently completing her Masters in Education from Kenyatta University and is in a business accelerator program run by Sinapis. Out of 250 entrepreneurs in the program, she was selected as one of 5 finalists for their 2017 business plan competition.