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Principal's Message

In 2013, the New York City Department of Education launched the Expanded Success Initiative New School Design Fellowship (ESI Fellows). The ESI Fellows were charged with designing a new school model that would:

  • Close the Achievement Gap:

  • Close the Discipline Gap:

  • Help to end The School to Prison Pipeline:

  • Create schools that were Culturally Relevant/Responsive:

  • Academically and Intellectually Empower Students:

In January of 2014, the ESI Fellows announced the opening of two EPIC Schools (EPIC North and EPIC South, and in April 2014, after the ESI Fellows shared their model with the Boys and Girls Campus and greater Bedford Stuyvesant Community, Tabari Z. Bomani were asked to incorporated the newly formed Nelson Mandela School for Social Justice (NMSSJ) into the EPIC Network of schools.

Using restorative practice, The NMSSJ community is characterized by a high sense of trust, a strong and effective involvement of families, collaboration and authentic student empowerment. NMSSJ school community seeks to stem the tide of the over suspension of young people of color, and therefore help to eliminate the school to prison pipeline.


Matthew Anderson

  • NMSSJ formed the first High School based Black Lives Matter chapter in a NYC DOE school.

  • All NMSSJ students are assigned a Rites of Passage Advisory: Our Advisory program is dedicated to promoting healthy and culturally relevant/responsive understanding and commitment to brotherhood, sisterhood, community, manhood and womanhood.

  • Last year, before the Pandemic, NMSSJ was set to open its Fabrication Lab and our first Computer Science Lab. These two labs will be the foundation of our developing CTE and STEAM programs.

  • Fall 2020 NMSSJ was given a $150,000 grant from Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams: These fund will be used toward improving our CTE and STEAM Labs

  • We believe that you cannot build a successful individual without providing for both social emotional and academic skills. NMSSJ has several programs to ensure that all scholar’s academic and social/emotional needs are met.

  • NMSSJ scholars have participated in the Early College Scholar’s program at LIU Brooklyn and the College Now Programs at John Jay and Medgar Evers College.

  • NMSSJ is dedicated to creating a culturally relevant academically rigorous learning environment that has a focus on Social Justice learning and action. Our classes are culturally relevant, project based and built around social justice themes.

  • NMSSJ participates in AP for All, and has successfully launched four AP courses

  • NMSSJ uses Restorative Justice/practices to resolve conflict, thereby focusing on strategies of discipline that promote personal growth and accountability.

  • Nelson Mandela School for Justice is the recipient of the 2018 Blackboard Award for Academic Excellence

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