20. Memorandum submitted by
the From Boyhood to Manhood Foundation (FBMF)
FBMF is an independent school having received
Ofsted independent school status in September 2004. It was founded
in 1996, in response to requests from parents and the community
to provide support for black boys of African and Afro-Caribbean
descent who were in danger of, or were already educationally and
socially excluded. FBMF provides a service for black boys aged
12-16 years and young men 17-21 in its "Lifestyle Management
and Self-Development Programs".
From Boyhood to Manhood Foundation.
The client age group is typically 11-17 years,
with the peer mentor scheme targeting 17-21 year olds. Around
150 young people pass through the school each year.
The FBMF Lifestyle Management program provides
basic education in math, english and science, as well as, anger
and lifestyle management, community service and extra curricular
activities. Students are referred by schools, Pupil Referral Units
(PRU's), Youth Offending Team's (YOT), social services, criminal
justice system, parents and self-referrals.
Funding: FBMF is project funded by the Government
Office For London, the Greater London Assembly, Southwark Council,
Connexions, Community Safety and Peckham Programmes. Its major
income is from its services provision to schools.
1. The main issues you deal with in your work
with young people
2. Finding sufficient funding to cater our
services. We run a full time service which provides full time
education, counselling, therapy, mentoring, parenting and positive
3. Affording adequate accommodation in order
to cater for the educational and training of an increasing number
of black males who are 16+. We find if they don't receive adequate
support when they leave school, or drop out of further education,
many young black males drift into crime or turn to street hustling.
It is our experience that with the right support, young men can
break out of this cycle of personal and social destruction.
4. The extent to which you believe there are
particular problems affecting young black people, and the reasons
5. Black Boy: Mis-diagnosed with Special Educational
According to a growing chorus of parents, educators
and activists whom FBMF work with, far too many confront a stifling
kind of bias that destroys their interest in school. This prejudice
can have hurtful consequences: cultural insensitivity, lowered
expectations, unduly harsh discipline, and the systematic shunting
of black boys into remedial or special education classes.
6. School ignoring their limitation to deal with
issues of black males
Our experience that many schools do not seek
the help of outside black organistions when they are dealing with
black male issues. In most cases, many schools believe that the
issues black males face in school, are no different from other
students. The consequences with this stance, is that the school
ends up excluding more black males from the classroom and putting
them in special educational units. Moreover, schools only seek
help, when the young person is in danger of exclusion, involvement
in crime, or truancy.
The types of interventions, which you have
found to be most helpful
8. Complementary parenting
Trying to provide a secure and nurturing environment,
so as to facilitate a successful transition from boyhood to manhood.
9. Positive Virtues
Fostering a sense of academic responsibility
and the promotion of the values and virtues of education and honest
Supporting parents as the young person's first
moral teachers, and encouraging parents to support FBMF in its
efforts to foster good social and community values.
11. Collaborative work with Statuaries and Voluntary
Engaging in collaborative work with other agencies
to facilitate a more comprehensive approach in dealing with black
youth disaffection, anti-social behaviour, gun, violent and youth
12. Constructive Activities
Providing educational and constructive activities
during the school day for long-term school "refusers",
and hard to reach 16+.
13. School Partnerships
Working with schools in order to prevent exclusions
and disruptive behaviour.
14. Mental Health Intervention
Providing a safe and caring space where young
black males can receive counselling and therapy in order:
To have a feeling of belonging.
Clarify life's dilemmas, which are
impacting on the transition from boyhood to manhood.
Non-judgmental support in order to
help with issues impacting on SELF and Identity.
Free from labelling, stigmatizing
and a sense of not being heard.