Not in Our School | Not in Our Town

Not in Our School

The Not In Our School (NIOS) Parent Guide for Preventing and Addressing Bullying and Intolerance highlights what you—as a parent—should do when your child is a victim of bullying.
Students from Peralta Elementary School in Oakland, Calif. perform an anti-bullying skit. This assembly launched their school-wide anti-bullying campaign.
Start a campaign in your campus! Photo Credit: Paly Voice
Bring the powerful message of religious inclusivity from Waking In Oak Creek into the classroom. Spark dialogue about faith, bullying based on religious beliefs, and how to be an upstander for a targeted community with your students today.

About NIOS

Not In Our School highlights and creates networks of schools working to be safe, accepting and inclusive, and free of bullying and all forms of intolerance. Find films, lesson plans and campaign guides for your school.

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  •   Estudiantes líderes de la escuela secundaria  Del Sur en Lancaster, California visitan una escuela primaria local y enseñan a...
  •   Grade Level: Elementary grades K-5 Film Run Time: 4:51 En Español: Inténtenlo: Representación Anti-Acoso Escolar  ...
  •   Este video destaca una actividad interactiva llamada “Disolviendo estereotipos.” Se puede usar de manera efectiva con alumnos o adultos...
  • In this new video geared toward elementary schools, students from Grimmer Elementary School in Fremont, CA explore the impact of bullying and...
  •   En este video los estudiantes de Grimmer Elementary School en Fremont, California exploran el impacto del acoso escolar o “bullying” y...
  • A Community Rocked by Hate is Awakened and Transformed The documentary Waking In Oak Creek profiles a suburban town rocked by hate after six...
  • Find previews and information about Class Actions at niot.org/ClassActions Written by: Julie Mann, Newcomers High School...
  •  Description: This video provides a brief overview of the purpose and goals of NIOS. It includes brief interviews with Patrice O’Neill,...
  •  Students at Watchung Hills Regional High School in New Jersey were fascinated when they heard about an Orange Out against bullying in...
  • A Community Rocked by Hate is Awakened and Transformed The documentary Waking In Oak Creek profiles a suburban town rocked by hate after six...
  •   Alex Epstein is a college student who, during high school, was compelled to help rebuild New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Using the...
  •   "We are all Americans in this country." —Fred Korematsu (1919-2005) When Japanese-Americans were sent to camps during World War II,...
  •   During a dance performance on stage, Jackie Rotman's music suddenly stopped. In response, members of the audience joined Jackie on stage...
  •   Janet Miller, a teacher at Hoover Middle School, said that she was blown away by district-wide statistics that revealed the risk of...
  •   Although unable to speak, read or write in English when she came to the United States in 2005, Jennifer Gaxiola's innate sense of self-...
  •   At age 12, Aitan Grossman was inspired by An Inconvenient Truth and began a journey that led him to use music to advocate for the...
  •   The Royal Chicano Air Force (RCAF) is an artistic collective based in Sacramento, California.  It was founded in 1969 to express the...
  •   Florence Jones (1907-2003) was the spiritual leader and chief healer of the Winnemem Wintu tribe of Northern California. The...
  •   Tadashi Nakamura is a 30 year old, fourth-generation Japanese American and second-generation filmmaker. Besides carrying on his...
  • A Community Rocked by Hate is Awakened and Transformed The documentary Waking In Oak Creek profiles a suburban town rocked by hate after six...
  •   Alex Epstein is a college student who, during high school, was compelled to help rebuild New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Using the...
  •   "We are all Americans in this country." —Fred Korematsu (1919-2005) When Japanese-Americans were sent to camps during World War II,...
  •   During a dance performance on stage, Jackie Rotman's music suddenly stopped. In response, members of the audience joined Jackie on stage...
  •   Janet Miller, a teacher at Hoover Middle School, said that she was blown away by district-wide statistics that revealed the risk of...
  •   Although unable to speak, read or write in English when she came to the United States in 2005, Jennifer Gaxiola's innate sense of self-...
  •   The Royal Chicano Air Force (RCAF) is an artistic collective based in Sacramento, California.  It was founded in 1969 to express the...
  •   Florence Jones (1907-2003) was the spiritual leader and chief healer of the Winnemem Wintu tribe of Northern California. The...
  •   Tadashi Nakamura is a 30 year old, fourth-generation Japanese American and second-generation filmmaker. Besides carrying on his...
  •   Vajra Watson founded SAYS: Sacramento Area Youth Speaks to give young people a voice through hip hop and spoken word. “We underestimate...
  •   Estudiantes líderes de la escuela secundaria  Del Sur en Lancaster, California visitan una escuela primaria local y enseñan a...
  •   Este video destaca una actividad interactiva llamada “Disolviendo estereotipos.” Se puede usar de manera efectiva con alumnos o adultos...
  •   En este video los estudiantes de Grimmer Elementary School en Fremont, California exploran el impacto del acoso escolar o “bullying” y...
  •   "We are all Americans in this country." —Fred Korematsu (1919-2005) When Japanese-Americans were sent to camps during World War II,...
  •   Alex Epstein is a college student who, during high school, was compelled to help rebuild New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Using the...
  •   Janet Miller, a teacher at Hoover Middle School, said that she was blown away by district-wide statistics that revealed the risk of...
  •   Although unable to speak, read or write in English when she came to the United States in 2005, Jennifer Gaxiola's innate sense of self-...
  •   At age 12, Aitan Grossman was inspired by An Inconvenient Truth and began a journey that led him to use music to advocate for the...
  •   The Royal Chicano Air Force (RCAF) is an artistic collective based in Sacramento, California.  It was founded in 1969 to express the...
  •   Florence Jones (1907-2003) was the spiritual leader and chief healer of the Winnemem Wintu tribe of Northern California. The...
  •   Slater Jewell-Kemker is a 17-year-old filmmaker and reporter who celebrates the best of humanity, empowering young people to change the world with media and technology. Through her work, Slater has empowered a global network of young environmentalists and met with important trendsetters and lawmakers. By using the tool of EXPRESS, Slater and the youth that join her are creating positive social change. This lesson addresses the following Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) strategies and you can have students look for these issues and examine them in themselves.
  •   At age 12, Aitan Grossman was inspired by An Inconvenient Truth and began a journey that led him to use music to advocate for the preservation of the natural landscape around him. He wrote a song, “100 Generations,” and started his own non-profit to raise funds for wildlife conservation. His goals were to raise awareness, have students from many countries record his song, and inspire young people that at any age, they could make a difference.
  • In this video, students use role-playing scenarios to depict experiences with prejudice or name-calling and practice effective interventions to combat or stop the bullying or harassment. This process can be an effective tool to use with students in your own classroom and school. Please use the guidelines below and review the “Note of Caution” to ensure a positive and productive experience.
  •  Overview:
  •   Chukou Thao, executive director of National Hmong American Farmers, immigrated to Fresno, CA with his family at age 8, after Laotian citizens were granted asylum in the US after the Vietnam war. Many of the first Hmong farmers suffered from discrimination, so Thao left his "cushy" job at the city of Fresno to ORGANIZE his community in a fight against injustice. Using the experiences of community members, Thao has grown NHAF to promote economic development, training and assistance to create positive social change in his community.
  •   Although unable to speak, read or write in English when she came to the United States in 2005, Jennifer Gaxiola's innate sense of self-worth compelled her to succeed.  
  • Engaging students in dialogue about prejudice and discrimination is a very powerful tool in combating hate and bullying and ensuring respectful classrooms and schools. Such dialogues can be led by classroom teachers, school social workers or counselors, or by other students trained to lead and facilitate dialogue.  Having students view the “Students Tune In and Speak Out” video to begin such a dialogue is an effective way to open this process.
  • Schools and college campuses are screening Not In Our Town: Class Actions across the country. Here we will compile ideas on how to use this PBS program in your classroom. Thanks to Newcomers High School (Long Island City, NY) teacher Julie Mann and Lakewood High School (Lakewood, OH) teacher Joe Lobozzo for preparing these comprehensive materials.  Pre-Screening Activities 
  •   "Once social change begins, it cannot be reversed. You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. And you cannot oppress a people who are not afraid anymore. We are the future, and the future is ours."
  •   Janet Miller, a teacher at Hoover Middle School, said that she was blown away by district-wide statistics that revealed the risk of violence that transgendered youth experience. Moved by the statistics, Miller made an impassioned plea to her colleagues that it was their responsibility to create a safe learning environment for ALL students and that any type of discrimination should not be tolerated. This lesson addresses the following SEL strategies and you can have students look for these issues and examine them in themselves.
  •   Estudiantes líderes de la escuela secundaria  Del Sur en Lancaster, California visitan una escuela primaria local y enseñan a estudiantes de 4º y 5º grado cómo ser defensores. A través de dramatizaciones y actividades interactivas dirigidas por los chicos de secundaria, los alumnos de primaria aprenden el significado del término “defensor” o “upstander” y cómo intervenir de manera efectiva, buscar ayuda y apoyar a un compañero que está siendo acosado. Este proceso puede ser una herramienta efectiva para utilizar en el salón de clases con los estudiantes. Por favor siga las siguientes instrucciones y revise la “Nota de cautela” para asegurar que sea una experiencia positiva y productiva. Nota: El proceso completo puede durar de 1 a 3 clases o reuniones de los estudiantes Instrucciones:
  • Palo Alto High School student Kevin Ward challenges the stereotype of African-Americans as "gangsters," and says that "smart is the new gangster." The 16-year-old is working to bridge the achievement gap for students of color, through the school's Unity Club and a program called Bridge, connecting students from affluent Palo Alto and East Palo Alto, a neighboring low-income community. This lesson addresses the following SEL strategies. You can have students look for these issues and examine them in themselves.
  • In this new video geared toward elementary schools, students from Grimmer Elementary School in Fremont, CA explore the impact of bullying and ways to be an upstander.  After intermediate students share personal experiences, they decide to take action and invent the "Leaving a Positive Footprint" activity, where the pupils paint blue footprints with positive messages "walking" though their campus. Later, they work with first grade buddies to discuss bullying and speaking up, and together they make paper footprint cut-outs and create their own upstander messages to post around the school.
  •   The son of Filipino immigrants, Laurence Tan was studying to be a doctor when the vision of becoming a teacher presented itself in a dream. Now a fifth grade teacher in Watts, CA, Laurence uses the tool of TEACH to inspire and educate students in an area where opportunities are slim. Laurence has also helped establish the Watts Youth Collective with former students, an organization that promotes social change through media. Laurence’s 12-hour teaching days and his work with the collective are efforts to produce positive changes in each individual and the community. This lesson addresses the following Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) strategies and you can have students look for these issues and examine them in themselves.
  •   Dr. Joseph Marshall Jr. is an author, activist, and veteran street soldier. Founder of the anti-violence movement Alive & Free, Marshall draws audiences from across the country to his weekly radio program, Street Soldiers—a name Dr. Marshall uses to describe people working to eliminate violence in their communities. To help keep his own community safer, Dr. Marshall co-founded the Omega Boys Club after years of working as a middle school teacher and seeing too many of his students lost to drugs and violence. This lesson addresses the following Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) strategies and you can have students look for these issues and examine them in themselves. Self-awareness: Dr. Marshall helps students become aware of their own lives and make the choice to be part of “the solution.” Self-management: Dr. Marshall says that “change begins with you.” He provides tools and opportunities for students to change themselves.
  •   "Once social change begins, it cannot be reversed. You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. And you cannot oppress a people who are not afraid anymore. We are the future, and the future is ours." Erica Fernandez has memorized these words, originally spoken by Cesar Chavez, and put them into action. Beginning in Oxnard, CA, Erica used the power of PROTEST to rally against a large energy corporation that planned to erect a liquefied natural gas (LNG) pipeline around affluent California coastal communities and through Oxnard, primarily occupied by monolingual Spanish-speaking immigrants. Not only would the LNG pipeline cut through the agricultural land vital to the economy of Oxnard, it would bring millions of tons of pollutants to one of the most beautiful areas in California.
  •   Chukou Thao, executive director of National Hmong American Farmers, immigrated to Fresno, CA with his family at age 8, after Laotian citizens were granted asylum in the US after the Vietnam war. Many of the first Hmong farmers suffered from discrimination, so Thao left his "cushy" job at the city of Fresno to ORGANIZE his community in a fight against injustice. Using the experiences of community members, Thao has grown NHAF to promote economic development, training and assistance to create positive social change in his community. This lesson addresses the following Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) strategies and you can have students look for these issues and examine them in themselves. Self-awareness: Chukou Thao recognizes the injustice happening to the Hmong community and realizes that he has the ability to help fight for those that are unable to speak for themselves.
  •   Slater Jewell-Kemker is a 17-year-old filmmaker and reporter who celebrates the best of humanity, empowering young people to change the world with media and technology. Through her work, Slater has empowered a global network of young environmentalists and met with important trendsetters and lawmakers. By using the tool of EXPRESS, Slater and the youth that join her are creating positive social change. This lesson addresses the following Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) strategies and you can have students look for these issues and examine them in themselves. Self-awareness: Slater is confident in her own abilities and is therefore able to talk to all sorts of different people. Self-management: Slater started filmmaking from an early age and realizes that although she is young and sometimes not taken seriously she doesn’t let it stop her from being a prominent voice of change for her generation.
  •   SUGGESTED QUESTIONS FOR STUDENTS AFTER READING THE CHRISTMAS MENORAHS, VIEWING NOT IN OUR TOWN, OR VIEWING OR PERFORMING PAPER CANDLES. By Janice I. Cohn Fighting Bullies         The residents of Billings stood up to bullies despite the risks. Why did they do that? Do you think that would have happened without the help of people like Chief Inman and Margaret MacDonald? Do you think that would have happened if Tammie Schnitzer had not “gone public” with what happened to her family? What were the risks these people took by taking a stand? What can each of us do in our own lives if we must confront − or someone we know must confront − bullying?
  •   Kiki is an extraordinary Sacramento student who, through her perseverance, strong character, and ability to forgive, has been able to celebrate life, finding happiness and success. Ten years ago, Kiki and her sisters were badly burned in a house fire in their native Vietnam that took the life of their mother. Raised by her father after securing treatment in the United States, Kiki and her sisters endured taunts and bullying and were separated when their father died of lung cancer a few years later. They have since been reunited.   However, Kiki does not focus on the pain from her loss. In her own words, "There is of course a part of me that is still hurting, but not from the fire. I'm hurt at the fact that I didn't forgive myself and others earlier...But now I have learned to forgive completely. I'm ready to move on to my next journey in life.”  

School Groups

Across the country, NIOS groups are creating new ways to make their schools safe for everyone. Start your own NIOS group page, and share how you're standing up for acceptance and inclusion!