Less than three years have gone by since Sheikh Muhammad Mugerwa embarked on what many people thought was an impossible journey to run a school. He had everything in short supply except determination.
After conceiving the idea of establishing a school at Salama in Makindye division in Kampala, Mugerwa started to assemble facilities by soliciting for support from well wishers both in Kampala and abroad.
But just two years since he opened the gates of Muniira Junior School to the community of Salaama, many eye witnesses cannot believe the successes that have been registered by the school in such a short time.
With just two years since it was opened, Sheikh Mugerwa’s efforts have seen the population of Muniira rise to a surprising 220 pupils starting from baby to primary four.
Last weekend, parents, trustees, staff and pupils came together to celebrate the successes of Muniirah junior school’s many achievements at the school’s graduation sports day.
While addressing parents and well wishers of the school, Sheikh Mugerwa cited the need to provide light to the village as the inspiration for the school.
He said he thought of the Arabic phrase of “Al Elimu Nur” which means “Education is Light”. He said this was the philosophical foundation that guided and still guides his vision for the school because it gives his team focus to serve the community as opposed to investing in other businesses.
“When we saw this hill along Salaama road, we decided that we would put all our efforts and resources to see that the children around this area are enlightened by the light we were about to bring. So it’s not a coincidence that on our emblem there is a sun emitting light.”
He urged parents to stop planning for their children buts instead prepare them to be good planners themselves by instilling in them a good education coupled with good manners.
Despite its Islamic name and background, Muniira’s owes a lot of its success to its broad focus from not simply providing Islamic education but also providing secular education.
This approach, according to some parents who spoke to this reporter, endeared them to many parents who are not muslims.
One parent who preferred anonymity said: “Unlike other Muslim-founded schools, Muniirah is much more flexible in that ,they don’t discriminate the pupils because of their religion. After all, the pupils learn Arabic which is growing in influence all over the world and as we stand now it’s the most spoken language in Africa.”
Thanks to the rapid growth, Muniira expects to start offering boarding facilities come 2017.
The Headmaster Zakaria Turyamwesiga, was all praises for the LC1 chairman Godfrey Kyobe for his support to the school and for always open to developmental ideas which has gone a long way to help the school.