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Carol Owala

Founder And Executive Director, Kenya Big Picture Learning

Bold Question: How might we support teachers to develop relationships of trust with students and families?

Path to Metis: Carol Owala is an educational trailblazer and leader committed to supporting schools and education leaders to create high quality, non traditional schools designed to tackle systemic issue related to high quality education. Having grown up in Kibera, Africa’s second largest slum, Carol is dedicated to serving children in Nairobi’s informal settlements, children who have few opportunities to thrive in life if they don’t receive a quality education. As a teacher, Carol co-founded Tabasamu Inclusive Centre and pioneered ground-breaking methods of working with children with special needs.

As a coach of coaches at Dignitas, she worked to share transformative adult learning practices. As a community organiser, Carol deepened connections with mothers in the communities she serves. Carol is now leading Kenya Big Picture Learning, a non-profit organisation that serves the neediest youths in Kenya. They provide intensive training, followed by long-term coaching for teachers and school leaders who then facilitate hands-on passion projects and community-based, professional internships for their students. Most recently Carol was awarded the prestigious Seymour Sarason award in recognition of her leadership in education reform.


Carol Owala
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