Most educators have received no training in how to stop student bullying. Typically, schools engage in denial, or suspend or expel students. These exclusionary responses fail to promote skill development in bullying students and often lead to retaliation against the target. Additionally suspensions disproportionately target students of color, lead to unsafe school environments and contribute to the school-to-prison pipeline.
Under the No Bully System school leaders are coached how to lead culture change on their campus and drive systemic change so that all students are included and accepted for who they are. When an incident of bullying or cyberbullying occurs, No Bully Schools are trained to bring together a Solution Team of students and leverage their empathy to end incidents of bullying among their peers.
No Bully’s internal tracking research demonstrates that Solution Teams solve over 90% of case of bullying. In 2012 Solution Team was awarded a First Prize in the global competition organized by Ashoka Changemakers for how it activates student empathy to achieve social impact. In 2013, No Bully was funded through California Proposition 63 (mental health) to train 23 Bay Area schools how to implement the No Bully System. After No Bully these schools were able to achieved 96% success in remedying incidents of bullying. In 2015 the National Institute of Justice recognized the No Bully System® as a breakthrough solution and is funding a long-term study in the Oakland Unified School District to measure school success in solving incidents after they have been trained by No Bully.
The No Bully System® is innovative in five major ways:
- It educates school leadership teams on how to lead culture change and coaches them to mobilize the whole school community of teachers, parents and students behind a new social vision statement. A powerful vision statement is central to developing a a strong and positive culture. It unifies the community around a "story of us" that distinguishes the school's uniqueness. When schools engage their community in developing the vision statement it becomes the guiding philosophy for all the school's initiatives around student wellbeing and safety.
- No Bully challenges the traditional view of bullying as an issue solely between the bully and the target. When a student is the target of bullying, a teacher convenes a Solution Team comprised of the bully, bully-followers and positive student leaders, assures them they are not in trouble, explains how the target is feeling, and solicits their solutions for addressing the situation. Solution Team operationalizes insights from systems theory that we can only affect real change through engaging the larger peer group. Instead of the typical top-down punitive approach, No Bully engages students to end bullying of peers.
- Solution Team puts into action the recent findings of neuroscience and evolutionary biology that humans are wired for cooperation and compassion from the first years of life onwards. Translated to the school setting, this research confirms that the vast majority of students have empathy for their peers when schools create the conditions that support these behaviors.
- It expands the capacity of teachers and school staff to address any mental health, familial, and social/emotional skill challenges that lead to and are caused by students becoming either a bully or a victim.
- It raises teacher consciousness of the diversity issues that drive bullying (e.g. race, gender, sexual orientation, disability and religion) and gives them tools to support students in feeling safe and proud to develop a unique identity.