education | Not in Our Town


Working with Watchung Regional High School is always inspiring. The connection between Not In Our School and Jamie Lott-Jones and her colleague Mary Sok began with the production of a film about their school’s efforts to address cyberbullying. The partnership did not stop there. Not In Our School has been hosted at the school, met with two superintendents, and has featured Watchung’s efforts many times on
As a school district administrator, Matt Tullis has played an important role in linking his school district to the Marshalltown Not In Our Town community effort to address bullying and intolerance. With his leadership, the school district has taken a strong stand, sponsoring Not In Our School schoolwide activities like Friday Night Lights and classroom activities. In 2013, Matt was sent as an emissary from Marshalltown to Hungary as that country began to set up their efforts. Marshalltown will be present in force with a contingent at the Not In Our Town National Leadership Gathering where you can learn more about their inspiring efforts. —Becki Cohn-Vargas, Not In Our School Director Tell us about your school community.
By Becki Cohn-Vargas, Not In Our School Director  Schools love to do anti-bullying assemblies to motivate the student body. Students may learn in motivational assemblies, but change can only happen when assemblies are part of a long-term plan with students in the driver’s seat. Not In Our School designed a model for a student-led assembly that can be carried out in any school, youth group, or community. The assembly incorporates the Not In Our School Core Principles with students taking the lead in addressing bullying and intolerance. Students learn to be upstanders and work toward an accepting and identity safe school environment with the support of the larger community. This assembly was successfully piloted in two schools. The guide provides step-by-step tools to design your school assembly. Feel free to customize it to your needs. And the good news is: it does not cost a penny. Not In Our School now offers the Anti-Bullying Launch Assembly Kit, including:
High school senior created Facebook compliments page to challenge bullying, spread positivityWe hear a lot about cyberbullying, but some students are using social media to encourage others as oppose to bringing them down.Wilson To, a high school senior in Nevada is one of those students. He launched a page called “Atech Compliments” so students could leave anonymous complimentarity messages about members of the student body.For the first year Wilson ran the page without revealing his identity. "A lot of quiet individuals don't think much of what they do, but when they get compliments for things they didn't realize about themselves, it helps to build self-esteem," he explained to The Huffington Post. The project has since become such a hit that Wilson taught administrators how to take over after graduation.
Jump to resources by theme:  Anti-Bullying Cyberbullying Bridging Differences LGBTQ School Climate Education Hotlines Official Legal & Law Offices  ANTI-BULLYING The Bully Project Launched with the film Bully, the Bully Project highlights solutions that both address immediate needs and lead to systemic change to combat bullying. Cartoon Network Cartoon Network’s anti-bullying program, Stop Bullying: Speak Up, focuses on spreading the word about bullying awareness and prevention. Their website has educational videos and games for students, and useful guides and tips for educators and parents.
This article, written by Dr. Becki Cohn-Vargas, originally appeared in the June/July 2012 California State PTA newsletter. Not In Our Town has partnered with CAPTA to work together to address bullying and intolerance in schools throughout California. Dr. Cohn-Vargas is the director of Not In Our School and an experienced educator. We hear a lot about bullying, but do we ever stop to really think about what it is and the consequences of bullying? After all, isn't just kids being kids, a part of growing up? Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among school-aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Both kids who are bullied and who bully among others may have serious, lasting problems. Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose. Bullying can affect people in many ways. Some may lose sleep or feel sick. Students may want to skip school. Some may even be thinking about suicide.
Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations volunteers in the Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho July 4, 2007 parade, carrying small billboards honoring civil rights leaders from throughout history. For many in the anti-hate movement, the lessons that have emerged from Northern Idaho are legendary. People like Father Bill Wassmuth, whose house was bombed by neo-Nazis in Coeur D'Alene, helped influence many community leaders working to address the dangers of hate.