Organization Name: Escola Maria Felipa

Focus Area: Growing Learners
Region: Brazil
Sector: Non-profit
Investment Year: 2023
Escola Maria Felipa (Maria Felipa) is a for-profit and private early childhood education and elementary school located in Salvador, Brazil. Maria Felipa centers the teaching of Afro-Brazilian and Indigenous history and culture in its curriculum. The school won the CEERT Educar award in 2022, for its anti-racist efforts in education.

Why We Invested

We are supporting Maria Felipa’s efforts to design and expand its curriculum to public school networks. Two decades ago, the teaching of Afro-Brazilian history and culture became mandatory with Law 10.639. But, a recent study from Alana Institute and Geledés Institute, who are also IF partners, found that 70% of schools take little or no action to implement it. We invested in Maria Felipia because we believe that it can significantly contribute to the continuity and sustainability of educational and pedagogical practices based on African and indigenous worldviews. We also believe its decolonial curriculum could help increase the self-esteem of Black students, while increasing racial literacy among all students.

An anti-racist education is an emancipatory education. This school is for all children. It is an Afro-Brazilian school that is guided by diversity. The idea is that we can build a critical, reflective and anti-racist society.
Cristiane Coelho, School Director, Escola Maria Felipa