National Black Education Group Launches Social Innovation Challenge

After 17 years of being the leading voice for increased parental choice and high quality education options that support low-income and working-class Black families and their children, today the Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO) announces a new phase in that fight with the launch of an ideas and action challenge to create the next iteration of BAEO or an entirely new Black-led education organization.

The BAEO Social Innovation Challenge (#BAEOChallenge) is a call for “big thinkers” and “big action” – people with audacious ideas, new approaches, and disruptive solutions to innovatively address and solve “how” to best serve Black children and ensure they have access to high-quality education options.

“It’s time for a new generation of Black leaders to step up, take the stage, and rethink how we advocate for Black children,” said BAEO President, Jacqueline Cooper.

A key feature of the #BAEOChallenge is the opportunity for the winning submission – from individuals or a team – to receive a $500,000 investment as seed funding to bring their organizational and action ideas to fruition.

“We’re excited to invite all facets of our community to consider getting engaged in the process. We are seizing this moment to take a bold step forward because we know an audacious, dynamic opportunity to better serve Black children, our children, is on the horizon. Together, we will ensure our children inherit a future worthy of their gifts and dream,” said BAEO Board Chair Emeritus, Dr. Howard Fuller.

Phase I (one) of The BAEO Social Innovation Challenge – the video application – is now live at  Applicants can find additional information about the process, including a full timeline and upcoming deadlines.

Additional details on the BAEO Social Innovation Challenge:

The Opportunity: The BAEO Social Innovation Challenge is the opportunity to receive a $500,000 investment to transform ideas and action plans to create the next iteration of BAEO or an entirely different Black-led organization that will carry out the mission of BAEO, to increase access to high-quality education options for Black children by actively supporting transformational education reform initiatives and parental choice policies that empower low-income and working-class Black families. 

Selecting a Course of Action: What does innovative advocacy look like in the 21st century to realize the mission of BAEO: The BAEO Challenge aims to solicit innovative ideas and sustainable organizational designs and action plans to fulfill the mission.

Who Can Participate: The #BAEOChallenge is open to applicants ages 17+ applying as individuals or teams. The Challenge calls on all students, parents, educators, innovators, community and business leaders, activists, tech leaders, and entrepreneurs (and anyone we left out) who have audacious and dynamic ideas.

What You Can Do: You can apply yourself at or you can nominate someone that you think would be great to be a part of the BAEO Social Innovation Challenge here:

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