Black 365 Academy: Reclaiming, Regenerating, and Liberating Black Excellence 

Coming Soon  Vision and Overview

Black 365 Academy (B365) will be a New England college preparatory boarding school offering a rigorous academic course of study for Black males in grades 4-12 involved in the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families. B365 envisions its campus to be located in Massachusetts with state-of-the-art academic, artistic, and athletic facilities in the greater Boston area.


The vision of B365 is to educate and nurture Black male scholars who are global citizens committed to dismantling oppression and inequities to create a more just world. The mission of B365 is to provide high-quality education that is personalized, responsive to student needs, justice-focused, and builds a foundation for lifelong learning and civic action. B365 will be a 501(c)3 nonprofit school and will have a Board of Directors to provide oversight, approve policies, assure that all legal and audit requirements are met, consult about key issues for the school, and assist with the school’s fundraising goals and development needs.


What They’re Saying

I had the good fortune of working closely with Mr. Darnell Thigpen Williams for over 12 years and was continually impressed by the depth and breadth of his knowledge, understanding, skills, and wisdom as an educator, as a leader, and as an unwavering advocate for social justice, equity, inclusion, and culturally responsive practices. I worked as a colleague with Darnell for a few years on important youth development projects, but I got to know him best when I became the Executive Director of the largest Educational Collaborative in Massachusetts and he led the agency’s professional development work as part of our contract to transform and manage the education programs for all the youth in the custody of the state’s juvenile justice system. In that capacity, Darnell was truly brilliant. Over and over, he developed and provided outstanding and transformational professional development to educators that focused on both effective educational practice and the advancement of social justice, equity, and anti-racist work. Darnell also helped lead social justice, equity, and anti-racist work with a number of administrators, schools, districts, and agencies, including our Collaborative. This is critical work that is often challenging, especially in resistant contexts, yet Darnell’s astuteness, competence, engaging nature, and deep commitment to the work proved effective in meeting the challenges.

Of all the people I have worked with, Mr. Williams is among the very top in both effectiveness and commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies that support culturally responsiveness and anti-racist work. He is a skilled communicator, a collaborative leader, a compassionate colleague, and a person of high integrity and exemplary values.”

(William Diehl, Ed.D., former Exective Director, Collaborative for Educational Services, retired)

I have had the pleasure of working with Darnell Thigpen Williams in his role as Associate Director of DYS Professional Development. I have known Darnell since August of 2011. Darnell has exhibited staunch professionalism and competence in all areas of his position and he has been an absolute asset to the advancement of our Professional Development programming. He is competent, personable, and committed to working with the administration teams, schools and teachers to provide transformational professional development training that showcase the most current evidence-based practices and strategies that help support student academic growth and social development. One of the areas of expertise that Darnell focuses on as part of his professional development menu is that of social justice and equity. Darnell is truly committed to providing professional development that provides the participants with strategies and guidance that support diversity, equity and inclusion, culturally responsive practices and anti-racist approaches within the educational setting. His professional development is not just informative, but also interactive and collaborative while raising awareness of current themes to support the deep integration of the content in educational and community settings. Darnell’s professional development training is impactful and sustainable, which is essential for the deep understanding and implementation of the practices which create success and competency within the focus areas. It has been a pleasure working with Darnell!

(Debbie Rivera, M.Ed., Associate Director of Education and Transition Services, Collaborative for Educational Services)