A highly-regarded urban public school educator in New Jersey for over twenty years, Principal Baruti Kafele distinguished himself in the classroom and as a school leader. As an elementary school teacher in East Orange, New Jersey, he was selected as the East Orange School District and Essex County Public Schools Teacher of the Year. As a principal, he led the transformation of four different schools, including "the mighty" Newark Tech, which went from a low-performing school in need of improvement to recognition by U.S. News and World Report Magazine as one of America's best high schools.
One of the most sought-after education speakers in America, Principal Kafele has delivered more than 1,000 conference keynotes, professional development workshops, parental engagement seminars and student empowerment assemblies since leaving his role as a principal five years ago. An expert in the area of "attitude transformation," Principal Kafele is the leading authority for providing effective classroom and school leadership strategies toward closing what he coined the "attitude gap," which he defines as "the gap between those students who have the WILL to achieve excellence and those who do not."
Principal Kafele is also the author of seven books, including his national best-sellers Closing the Attitude Gap: Motivating Black Males to Achieve in School and in Life and The Principal 50. His eighth book, The Teacher 50, will be released in August 2016.
Principal Kafele, whose African first name means "teacher," is the recipient of over 150 educational, professional and community awards, including the National Alliance of Black School Educators Hall of Fame Award, the Milken Educator Award, the New Jersey Education Association Award for Excellence. In 1998, the city of Dickinson, Texas, declared February 8 Baruti Kafele Day.
"We've got to make sure that we're ambassadors for education and that we're talking about the significance of education. We've got to..." (read more)
1986 Kean University, B.S.
1997 New Jersey City University, M.A.