“Dem Boys” Are Rewriting the Education Narrative

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  • Among top scorers on the SAT—those scoring between a 750 and 800—60 percent are Asian and 33 percent are white, compared to 5 percent Latino and 2 percent black (Brookings)
  • For college-bound SAT users, the SAT national average score was 1083 ; for African-Americans and Hispanics scores were 950 and 980 respectively.  (Brookings)
  • With an income of <20,000, the average test score for the SAT is 970. With an household income of >200,000, that number was 1230! (Brookings)
  • It is estimated that in the entire country last year at most 2,200 black and 4,900 Latino test-takers scored above a 700 on the math section. In comparison, roughly 48,000 whites and 52,800 Asians scored that high. (PrepScholar)
  • There were only 9 states with SAT averages LOWER than Georgia in the last year.

The mission:

We can’t change the education system. Unfortunately, there are barriers around education that make helping some of our students a “moving target”. It is increasingly difficult to mentor, tutor, and follow a student through their three years of high school prior to their standardized testing. It IS possible, however, to dramatically increase the chances of a successful standardized test scores that will influence admissions decisions, scholarship dollars, and special program acceptances.

Right Before Magazine partnered up with a group of 25 Black males, “Dem Boys”, looking to do our part to level the socioeconomic education playing field! Imagine if it were possible to take a high achieving student, right at the precipice of college admissions and give them the confidence to apply to their dream school knowing that their SAT score is in the upper 75th percentile. A lot of times this confidence is made possible in schools that offer significant test preparation or with families that have the finances to provide testing assistance. We want to create something for students in schools without these resources.

We will be giving away FREE merit-based SAT prep courses as well as providing weekend mentoring that can help on subjects such as essay writing, the application process, and research. This opportunity will be application based but designed to take students at the point Right Before applying to their dream school and push them over the edge. We will provide course books, instructors, individual mentors in Athens, application waivers, and the moral support teenagers need to aspire for more!

The idea:

It all started how a lot of things start, as a New Year’s Resolution. I bounced the idea around numerous group messages I was involved in, hoping to just get ONE to bite. “What if, over the course of this year, we all decide to give a little bit of money every two weeks in order to give away a lot of money in a few months?”  As a secondary thought, “What if our community did the same, with GroupMes around the world gathering funds together for one larger cause?” … It was a big reach; bigger than most would be comfortable with, but aren’t those the kind of reaches we need to take our people to the next level? The idea itself isn’t new. Micro-financing or “crowdfunding” is one of the fastest growing trends for startup ideas and ventures.

Like most resolutions, the hardest part was getting things moving and pushing deeper into month two. The concept of giving money to someone every two weeks is/was enough to scare a lot of people off. Some of the best people, even with good intentions, never got around to replying. When it comes to starting something new, there are some who get on board at the beginning and others that tend to become a part after it launches. Right Before is extending the opportunity for readers everywhere to get involved now.

To donate please visit:


Call to Action:

We want to raise enough money to positively affect change in the lives of many students who have already worked hard enough, but just need the additional resources to reach the plateau that often comes with standardized testing. Help us be the change in these students lives, and the effects will come back to benefit our communities in the long run. Our goal to bring this program to fruition is $3,000. That will give us a classroom worth of materials and the ability to help each student apply to their dream school, free of charge. We have a YouCaring that has already raised $750 of our goal, but just need your help to push us over the finish line.

Former President Barack Obama once said “If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.” There are a lot of individuals waiting for something good to happen to them; who deserve something good to happen for them. Help Right Before and the 25 Black men behind this goal to make the difference in these students’ academic careers. 

To donate please visit:


Kenneth Duncan is the founder of Right Before and a regular contributor. He focuses on the education of financial literacy in underprivileged communities.

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