Empowering Youth, Engaging Schools (EYES): Facing Bias and Bullying

The EYES Initiative supports school leaders in effectively addressing bias, bullying, and other hurtful behaviors within their buildings and school communities.

EYES engages and empowers youth and communities to create safer schools by recognizing and reducing bias-based bullying behaviors.

Beginning in spring 2018, and in partnership with Facing History and Ourselves, NSCC will implement EYES in five schools. We are looking to scale EYES implementation nationally over the next few years.

The EYES initiative directly addresses bias-based bullying by:

  • Partnering with Facing History and Ourselves to develop and integrate evidence-based curricula for social studies, humanities, and language arts courses
  • Targeting adolescents’ academic skills, empathy, tolerance and agency
  • Building school improvement supports across all layers of school

Core Components

Classroom curriculum and teacher training integration led by Facing History and Ourselves

NSCC and Facing History and Ourselves Collective impact

  • A combined network of more than 120,000 teachers around the world.
  • School Climate Results
  • Anti- Biased Framework
  • A combined 60 year history and track record

Intensive coaching for building-level school climate leadership team members

Customized professional development tailored to the school needs and strengths

Networks to build PLCs/ NICs to foster deep learning and share best practices within and across schools

Emphasis on youth voice and intergenerational approaches to bully prevention and school climate improvement

Bullying is a problem

  • Nearly 1 in 4 U.S. students have been victims of bullying behaviori
  • Victims of bullying are more likely to miss school, be suspended, be incarcerated, drop out of school, and/or experience learning problemsii
  • 70% of students have witnessed bullyingiii
  • Bias-based harassment, which is harassment rooted in race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, or disability, is especially pervasive, with reports of bias-related incidents increasing and the majority of these increases occurring in K-12 schoolsiv
  • Bias-based bullying victimization is associated with a number of poor outcomes for youth, including serious emotional disorders, behavioral problems, and academic dysfunction.

iNational Center for Education Statistics (2015). Student reports of bullying and cyber-bullying: Results from the 2013 School Crime Supplement to the National Crime Victimization Survey. Washington, DC: Author.

iiLuxenberg, H., Limber, S., Olweus, D. (2015). Bullying in US Schools: 2014 Status Report. Hazeldon Publishing. Retrieved from: http://www.violencepreventionworks.org/public/document/bullying_2015_statusreport.pdf

iiii Bradshaw, C., Sawyer, A., & O’Brennan, L. (2007). Bullying and peer victimization at school: Perceptual differences between students and school staff. . School Psychology Review, 36(3), 361-382.

ivSouthern Poverty Law Center (2016). Update: 1,094 bias-related incidents in the month following the election. Montgomery, AL: Author. Retrieved from: https://www.splcenter.org/hatewatch/2016/12/16/update-1094-bias-related-incidents-month-following-election

Schools need better resources to effectively address bias-based bullying

  • Although most schools are preparing educators and staff to recognize and respond to bullying, behaviors that are based on bias are often overlooked. Worse still, some students report being victimized not just by their peers but by their teachers as wellv
  • Research indicates that adults in the school community often do not view bullying as a serious problem, even though students attending the same schools do vi
  • Most “add-on,” “stand-alone,” and “pre-packaged” anti-bullying programs are largely ineffective at addressing and preventing bullying behaviors in schools

v (http://theconversation.com/why-teachers-are-unable-to-stop-bias-based-bullying-55557)

viCohen, J. (2006). Social, emotional, ethical and academic education: Creating a climate for learning, participation in democracy and well-being. Harvard Educational Review, Vol. 76, No. 2, Summer, pg 201-237.

Industry-leading surveys and reporting, including NSCC’s acclaimed Comprehensive School Climate Inventory (CSCI), Community Scale, and a leadership team Readiness Tool

Three-year evaluation plan and implementation led by NSCC and Facing History and Ourselves research teams


The EYES Initiative includes a three-year evaluation plan led by the research teams at NSCC and Facing History and Ourselves. This evaluation will seek to understand implementation fidelity and impact. Indicators of impact will include changes in

    • bullying and attitudes about bully-victim-witness behaviors,
    • feelings of safety by members of the school community,
    • student engagement, and
    • teacher’s sense of self-efficacy in relation to issues of bias and bullying

The results of this evaluation will be made available to participating schools.

Support and Benefits for Participating Schools

All schools implementing the EYES Initiative will receive the following supportive services and benefits to facilitate their work:

  • Certification through NSCC’s School Climate Leadership Certification program
    • 12+ hours of intensive coaching for up to two staff members per building to support leadership development around bullying prevention and school climate improvement.
  • Faculty professional development workshops.
    • Topics to include social-emotional learning, bullying prevention, youth engagement, understanding bias and developing a reflective classroom.
  • Through Facing History and Ourselves, teachers will receive instructional materials and training focused on integrating anti-bias and bullying content and strategies into general classroom curricula and daily practices
  • Three-year, unlimited access to resources in an online learning environment through NSCC’s School Climate Resource Center.
    • The Resource Center includes learning modules, a resource library, discussion forums and other social networking functionalities, and dashboards to track progress and learning.
  • Three-year access to industry-leading measurement tools: NSCC’s acclaimed Comprehensive School Climate Inventory (CSCI), a bullying behavior assessment, and a leadership team Readiness Tool.
  • Five intensive, full-day trainings for the school leadership teams across the three years and two Youth Summits to both celebrate and foster student leadership.
The EYES Initiative has been made possible due to the generous support of the Harvey L. Miller Foundation