Zach Louw, ‘Cape Maclear Secondary School - Malawi’, 2016, Museum of African Design (MOAD)


Coming from the South African school system, it was rare that I was ever placed in class with a student who was different in age from me. Everyone started school at 6 years old and matriculated 12 years later at 18. After visiting over 20 schools I’ve come to realize that age is not a determining factor of your educational progress but more of a guideline. I met Victory Andrews in Cape Maclear Secondary School. After learning about his age, I asked him why he was 20 years old and in grade 11.

"I am late because my parents are poor and they couldn't pay the school fees. Right now it's 10 000 kwacha ( $15 ) per term. I didn't go to school for two years. I didn't have a job, I just did nothing. Now I pay my own fees by fishing. I fish on the weekend or sometimes after class. I catch Usipa using a boat that I rent from a local fisherman and sell my catch on the shore".

About Zach Louw