Community Matters in the News

Click on the links below to access articles on Safe School Ambassadors and other Community Matters programs and services, as well as interviews of and editorials by Executive Director Rick Phillips.

Students are part of the positive climate solution

Safe School Ambassadors take an "inside-out" approach, believing students have the power to peacefully interject in many situations when they see bullying and harassment among other students. Teachers and staff alone cannot solve these problems, and the Safe School Ambassador Program is one piece of a school-wide effort to engage students as part of the solution.

October 2 2013 by Tara Garcia Matthewson, The Daily Herald

Bullying: Schools get students involved in solution

In Community Unit District 300, three schools in Carpentersville and Algonquin have launched a new anti-bullying program this year. The Safe School Ambassador Program is student-driven. Leaders in the various social groups are trained to prevent, stop or report bullying, whether it is Internet-based or happens within the school.

August 15 2013 by Bethany Wesley, The Bemidji Pioneer

Blocking out bullying: New program launched to help curb bullying in Bemidji schools

The Joseph and Janice Lueken Family Foundation on Thursday unveiled its plan to fund the implementation of the Safe Schools Ambassador program throughout Bemidji Area Schools' six elementary schools.

June 5 2013 by Annita West, The Aransas Pass Progress

Safe School Ambassadors visit Aransas Pass elementary schools

Aransas Pass High School Safe School Ambassadors visited Kieberger Elementary Tuesday, May 21 to share the Dr. Seuss book, Horton Hears a Who and the advantages of becoming a SSA student.

March 6 2013 by Martha Rose Brown, The Times and Democrat, Orangeburg, SC

‘Safe School Ambassadors’: Selected District 3 students trained to help stop bullying

Orangeburg, SC Consolidated School District Three is taking a proactive approach in tackling the issue of bullying in the schools by introducing the Safe School Ambassadors Program to train selected student leaders how to identify bullying and to “intervene non-violently.

March 4 2013 by Madhu Krishnamurthy, Chicago Daily Herald

How to change a culture of hazing in schools

Changing a culture of hazing in schools takes more than the mere adoption of anti-bullying policies or having students take pledges - it requires making the school environment not just physically but emotionally safer

February 26 2013 by Doug Keeler, Midway Driller Editor , Taft Midway Driller

Lincoln Jr. High takes fight against bullying into the community

Students from Lincoln Junior High in Taft, CA are taking the battle against bullying up another step, and, as Lincoln assistant principal Heather Ward told the District's Board of Education, it's starting to pay off.

February 5 2013 by Marney Simon, Free Press Newspapers, Wilmington, IL

Reed-Custer ambassadors listen, learn

115 students from grades 4 through 12 in the Reed-Custer Consolidated Union School District in Braidwood, Illinois, participated in a two-day, comprehensive training program to become Safe School Ambassadors.

January 18 2013 by Cassandra Garcia, KLAS-TV, News Now 8, Las Vegas

Conference aims to stem bullying, tragedies

CM Executive Director Rick Phillips addressed the National Safety Response Conference, held in Las Vegas, NV on January 16 - 18, 2013 on the topic of "Creating Safe Schools from the Inside-Out".

December 27 2012 by Nancy Sands Johnson, Northbay Biz - The North Bay Business Journal

Safe at School

Sebastopol-based nonprofit shows students how to create a culture of kindness at school.

December 11 2012

Rick Phillips interviewed on WCIU-TV Chicago

CM Executive Director Rick Phillips is interviewed by Melissa Forman on WCIU-TV about the Safe School Ambassadors program and our work with schools in the Chicago area.

November 23 2012 by Margarita Raycheva, Staff writer

Urbana Middle School program empowers students to stop bullying

Urbana Middle School program making a difference with ‘Safe School Ambassadors’

October 23 2012 by Betsy Brown, Pacific News Service

Students Learning To Be Ambassadors Against Bullying

Students from five of Guam's secondary schools have been picked to become Safe School Ambassadors. The student ambassadors are being trained this week to not just talk about bullying and school violence but to put a stop to it by influencing their peers in a positive way.

April 26 2012, Yahoo News

Waking Up Courage

We can’t legislate this problem away. We can’t punish our children into being compassionate. The best solution is to wake up the courage of bystanders.

April 25 2012 by C. W. Nevius, San Francisco Chronicle

It’s time for students to stand up to bullies

Punishment sounds great, but it rarely stops the taunts, assaults and cyber-attacks. There's really only one thing that works. Students must speak out and stand up to their peers. That was the message at a daylong conference this week attended by school officials from San Francisco and the Bay Area.

March 27 2012 by Chris Smith, Press Democrat

Nothing to be done about bullying?

The new documentary “Bully” will be tough to watch, but Sebastopol's Rick Phillips is hoping teens and adults who see it won't trudge home feeling hopeless.

June 15 2011 by Victoria Nagata, Big Bear Grizzly

Tiny steps reap big change

“If not me, who? If not now, when?” That is the mantra of the Safe School Ambassadors.

May 27 2011 by Marge Neal, Frederick News Post

Gov. Martin O’Malley to Urbana Middle School

At Urbana Middle School, the message is out: Bullying is not acceptable.

May 11 2011 by Stephanie Luisier, WSAW

“Bullies Beware:” Safe School Ambassador Program

It's something no parent wants their child to go through, but it happens in schools every day.

May 9 2011 by Lucas Kavner, Huffington Post

HuffPost Greatest Person Of The Day: Rick Phillips

Everything we want –- higher graduation rates, less violence, cultural respect and diversity –- all of that will happen if we create a real community in the schools.