The South Orange-Maplewood (SOMA) Black Parents Workshop, Inc. was established in 2014 by Black parents determined to address patterns of racial discrimination in the South Orange-Maplewood School District in Essex County, New Jersey. The organization cited racial disparities in access to advanced-level and Advanced Placement (AP) courses, racially disparate outcomes in student discipline, the dearth of Black teachers in the district, and the racial achievement gap. SOMA-BPW supports Black student organizations in the district and collaborates with the MapSO Freedom School, a community-engagement initiative that focuses on social justice and cultural competency.
The South Hudson (SoHUD) Black Parents Workshop was launched in April 2018 as an organizing platform for Black parents in the communities of Hoboken, Jersey City and Bayonne in Hudson County, New Jersey. SoHUD focuses on equity issues in the three school districts in these Hudson River urban communities. While the demographic profile of each school district is different, the challenges Black students face are similar. While SOMA – BPW is working in two, predominantly white, middle-class suburban communities, SoHUD -BPW confronts the complexity of gentrification, and working-class communities and poverty.
We seek to support students representing the global Black community – African-American, Afro-Latino, Caribbean and African. If you are a Black or Latino parent-resident in a local school district where there is evidence of discriminatory practices or patterns of discrimination that undermine Black student success, please reach out to us so we can help organize an affiliate of the Black Parents Workshop. Contact us through e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.