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"Building Boys Into Men"


What is SABA?

Located in our new Chapel Hill, NC facility, SABA utilizes an arts-based curriculum to “B.U.I.L.D. Boys into Men.” By focusing specifically on the cultural backgrounds and needs of culturally and linguistically diverse boys, SABA cultivates a Brotherhood for boys to develop their critical thinking, artistic, and academic skills through specialized cultural programs.


SABA curriculum and instruction is Unapologetically designed to cultivate knowledge of self and expose students to rich and diverse culturally responsive learning opportunities. SABA empowers students to understand that they are multi-faceted individuals who contribute to the school and society in many ways.


Using Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple Intelligences, students will engage in lessons that cultivate a growth mindset. SABA students will learn to be Leaders, world-changing problem solvers, and stewards of their community. SABA students will learn that their lives matter and are able to thrive with Dignity in a school environment that nourishes their mind, body, and soul.

The mission of SABA is to empower and BUILD boys, especially culturally and linguistically diverse boys, to be strong, creative academic scholars, critical thinkers, and community leaders through a culturally responsive arts-based education.


Achieving the Mission

When SABA is achieving the mission, all boys will BUILD themselves academically, mentally, physically and culturally through a culturally responsive learning experience. Personalized Education Plans (PEP) will be developed for all students to individualize instruction. Teachers will differentiate the curriculum to meet specific learning targets for all students.


The use of Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences will address how students learn, the use of AVID strategies will allow students to sustain what they have learned and the arts-based curriculum will allow students to apply their learning of the core content in a variety of art forms. All boys will be expected to read, write, think and speak daily. All boys will develop, design, BUILD and present a culminating project throughout the school year to demonstrate mastery of the skills that encompasses everything they have learned through the instructional framework; critical-thinking, math, reading, writing, presenting, etc.


SABA will utilize artists in residence to collaborate with teachers to support the core content and develop independent and group projects, as well as presentations or performances.

What's in it for the students?

Students at SABA will be able to see themselves in every aspect of the learning environment, BUILD meaningful relationships with staff and students, take ownership of their learning, become an integral part of the decision-making in the school community and advocate for themselves. With community and parental support and engagement, SABA will change the trajectory of every child that enters the doors of the school building.

Welcome to SABA.



Valencia Toomer


Valencia Toomer, Founder of School of the Arts for Boys Academy (SABA), is a native of Chatham County and resident of Lee County.  Mrs. Toomer has an extensive career in public education. She has taught at the elementary and middle school level, served as a K-8 and high school assistant principal, and most recently as the Principal of Horton Middle School in Chatham County. Mrs. Toomer’s observation of and the knowledge of the education system’s failure to appropriately serve African-American students, especially Black and Brown boys, resulted in her vision for SABA. 


Mrs. Toomer has taught at the collegiate level teaching courses such as Classroom Management, as well as Diversity in Schools and Society.  She also traveled as an Open Court Reading Consultant.  Valencia Toomer was named recipient of the 2018 North Carolina Association of Scholastic Activities Principal of the Year. 

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