Director of Special Needs, Ministry of Education
Bold Idea: All learners and teachers in integrated schools —whether hearing impaired or not— are conversant in Kenya Sign Language.
Path to Metis: Sheilah envisions a Kenyan education system in which everyone belongs and no one is left out. She is a trained teacher in regular and special needs education. Her vast knowledge and expertise has clothed her with a great drive and passion to create awareness on the need for early intervention and placement in education of children with disabilities. Her belief is that no learner should be left behind despite any prevailing barriers in their physical, cognitive, emotional and social make up. It was Sheila’s deployment to Kibera Primary School and later Joseph Kang’ethe Unit for the Hearing Impaired, that changed her career and focus as an educator. Sheila realized that many learners, both with and without disabilities, went through the school system without much change and benefit from the learning experiences offered, thereby culminating into poor learning outcomes. The scenario was worse in the class for learners with hearing impairment with minimal resources and poor teacher to learner ratios. Sheila’s current position as a Special Needs Education Officer with the Ministry of Education; Directorate of Special Needs, Nairobi- Kenya offers vast and high profile participation in various forms. As a strategic thinker, she uses every opportunity that presents itself to create awareness and educate on disability awareness and inclusion in all education and social programmes. She is currently in charge of Teaching and Learning Resources including assistive devices and technologies. Sheilah also advices the ICT department and other relevant stakeholders on inclusive integration in education.
Sheila joined a Teacher Education Programme at Kericho Teacher’s College, then proceeded to Maseno University where she graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Special Needs Education- Hearing Impairment, English Literature.