NIOS FAQ | Not in Our Town


What is Not In Our School?
Across the country, students and teachers are sharing stories, joining together and taking action to create safe schools, free from stereotypes, intolerance, and hate. They’re part of a movement called Not In Our School.

For more than a decade, Not In Our School has inspired students of all ages to develop and share innovative ways to resist bullying and promote an atmosphere of acceptance and inclusion.  

For more information about Not In Our School, including a short "What is NIOS?" video, please visit the About NIOS page.

What is Not In Our Town?
While hate violence makes headlines, the positive actions of people across the country are creating a different story. They are part of a movement called Not In Our Town.

Not In Our Town highlights communities working together to stop hate. Our videos and broadcasts highlight and celebrate people who have developed creative anti-bias programs and responses.  These stories have motivated many others to develop their own innovative initiatives which overpower the hateful actions and voices in their communities.

You can learn more about Not In Our Town on the About NIOT page. Not In Our Town is a project of The Working Group, a 501(c)3 nonprofit documentary production organization.

How can I purchase a Not In Our School or Not In our Town DVD?
Not In Our Town and Not In Our School DVDs are available for purchase on our website. If you’d like to speak with our video sales team, please call (510) 268-9675.

I’m interested in starting a Not In Our School week at my school. Do you have suggestions for how I can present the idea to my school administration?
Showing our short “What is NIOS?” video can be a great way to introduce Not In Our School to your school administration.

The “Starting a Not In Our School Campaign” Local Lesson, written by educational administrator Becki Cohn-Vargas, gives a first-person account of how one school developed their own NIOS campaign, and how that campaign has grown over the years.

Prejudice, bullying, and discrimination can be challenging issues to discuss. Do you have ideas for how to address these topics in my classroom?

Our education partners Facing History and Ourselves have developed a helpful guide that can prepare students for using the Not In Our School website. This resource includes activities that can help establish norms for a safe classroom community that respects different points of view.

I’m pressed for time. What are some NIOS activities I can do in just one or two class periods?
Our collection of Facing History and Ourselves' lesson plans and NIOS activity guides include several step-by-step activities you can do in a short amount of time:

Are your videos closed-captioned?
After being approached by the California School for the Deaf, NIOS is now actively working to add closed captions to our educational videos on YouTube. Thanks to our wonderful interns, we now have nearly 20 of our most popular videos with accurate closed captions, in addition to all of our PBS films. 
Access our closed-caption videos here. And keep checking back as we add more to the list. 
How can I get help for myself or someone else in a situation that involves bullying, harassment, or hate?
NIOT works to promote dialogue and understanding and action to stand up to bullying and intolerance. However, we are not a counseling or direct support organization. We suggest if you or someone you know is being bullied or harassed in school, immediately seek support in addressing the situation. Start with your parents and the classroom teacher and if needed , go to the principal and up the chain of command all the way to the school board. Also, seek out local supportive organizations to assist you. 
For youth ages 12-24 who need support or are in crisis the North American Alliance of Child Helplines (NAACH) is a universal crisis portal to reach qualified, professional crisis counselors.
Call: 1-855 201-2121 
Online chat support: htttp//
For youth or adults in crisis, call:
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline-1-800-273-8255 
Trevor Project Lifeline for LGBT youth- 1-866-488-7386
All these hotlines are free, confidential and available 24/7.


Do you have a Not In Our School newsletter?
We premiered the Not In Our School e-newsletter in April 2011. You can sign up by entering your email on this webpage in the box in the top, right-hand corner. Sign up now, and you'll receive updates about the latest Not In Our School activities, lesson plans, stories, and videos.

For inspiring stories and videos about communities across the nation standing up to intolerance, sign up for our free monthly Not In Our Town e-news.

I have more questions about NIOS. How can I get in touch with someone at Not In Our School?
We’d love to hear from you. For questions about Not In Our School, please email the Not In Our Town School and Community Coordinator. If you have questions about how to use our website, please email our Web Manager.

For general information about the Not In Our Town project, please email our administrative team. We’re also available by phone at (510) 268-9675, Monday-Friday, Pacific Standard Time.

Our mailing address is: Not In Our Town/Not In Our School, P.O. Box 70232, Oakland, CA, 94612.