THE “PROBLEM” WITH BLACK BOYS

Much has been written about “the problem with black boys”: they have higher rates of school suspension and expulsion, they are disproportionately represented in special education, they are considered to be defiant and unable to focus in class, and they are at greater risk of future incarceration than their white and/or female counterparts.

Researchers have written about the reasons for these problems, and have offered workable solutions. Unfortunately, most of this information has remained within the realm of scholarly literature, never reaching the classroom teachers who could use it to improve their effectiveness in working with Black boys. By the same token, parents have few resources to help them to understand their own Black sons. Many of them feel intuitively that something is wrong in the classroom (“My son doesn’t act that way at home.”) They often engage in child-rearing practices that are counterproductive, even destructive. Without understanding what their sons need, and what to do differently, they repeat the practices that have been passed down through generations following slavery.

BLACK BOY ADVOCATE offers alternatives to the misconceptions about Black boys, sharing science-based strategies for maximizing their potential. Consultant services will be offered on an individual basis to parents and teachers, empowering them to advocate for their children in school. Mini-courses will help classroom teachers to incorporate brain-based strategies into their classroom repertoire. Parent training groups will assist parents in learning new approaches to prepare their sons for productive adulthood.