Community Matters Blog

Read our blog posts below by CM Founder Rick Phillips, CM Trainers, staff members and guest bloggers, as they discuss the issues of bullying, cyberbullying and school climate.

Bullying Prevention Month – Youth Empowerment
October 17 2018

Bullying Prevention Month – Youth Empowerment

As National Bullying Prevention Month is recognized in communities across America, with schools and other organizations joined as partners, awareness of bullying and its consequences continues to be a vital part of our nation’s conversation.

Successful School Climate Improvement: 5 Action Steps for Starting the Year Off Right
September 19 2018

Successful School Climate Improvement: 5 Action Steps for Starting the Year Off Right

It’s déjà vu all over again, as another start to the school year is upon us. This is a time to reconnect to our reasons for caring about students and doing all we can to ensure that they attend schools where they feel welcome, safe and connected to caring adults.

How to Kill a Kid’s Future
May 10 2018

How to Kill a Kid’s Future

A common mistake many parents and school officials make is to think that gang activity is limited to a particular group of youth who live in a particular community and lack resources that other youth may have. While these do play a factor, in my experience one does not need to be a validated gang member to have the gang mentality.

Don’t Keep Scrolling! Teaching Young People to be Upstanders Online
April 18 2018

Don’t Keep Scrolling! Teaching Young People to be Upstanders Online

In today’s world of ubiquitous online communication, the practice of mistreating other people through texting, social media and gaming is an ongoing problem. How can we support our young people in recognizing the problem and standing up for the person being targeted? Here are 3 simple steps to building upstander behavior online.

An Evolving Practice of Mindfulness In The Classroom
March 22 2018

An Evolving Practice of Mindfulness In The Classroom

A calmer campus. More focused students. Every school administrator is working toward those goals. Could a mindfulness program help your school achieve them?

How Safe School Ambassadors Can Reduce Sexual Harassment On Campus
March 8 2018

How Safe School Ambassadors Can Reduce Sexual Harassment On Campus

We are living in a time where sexting, revenge porn, date rape, hazing and other forms of sexual abuse and harassment are happening too frequently in our schools. Safe School Ambassadors help address the problem by modeling relationships built on compassion, not dominance.

Restorative Practices - “Connect to Correct”
February 21 2018

Restorative Practices - “Connect to Correct”

When misbehavior occurs, how we choose to intervene can either strengthen our relationships and connections with students or damage them. "Connect to Correct" is a process to address mistreatment that preserves relationships, leaves students' dignity intact and supports behavior change.

Engaging Students and Parents in Building a  Restorative School Culture
February 5 2018

Engaging Students and Parents in Building a Restorative School Culture

Today more and more schools are implementing a restorative practices approach in their school climate improvement efforts. However, too many schools fail to recognize the importance of fully engaging two critical “stakeholder” groups: students and parents/families.

Counteracting Bullying and Mistreatment of LGBTQI Identified Youth
January 22 2018

Counteracting Bullying and Mistreatment of LGBTQI Identified Youth

LGBTQ-identified youth are more likely to experience bullying, teasing, harassment, physical assault, and rejection than their non-LGBTQ-identified peers. What can we do, as a strong parent advocate, to create a climate of safety and joy in schools? To create a true home away from home for ALL students?

Leveraging your LCAP Funds to Improve Your School Climate
January 10 2018

Leveraging your LCAP Funds to Improve Your School Climate

Here in California, school district’s LCAP plans must focus on eight priority areas that help all students succeed and thrive. Of these eight priorities, Community Matters has been committed to providing support to schools by focusing on these three: student engagement, school climate and parent involvement.

The Power of Youth to Reduce Alcohol and Drug Abuse in Schools
December 7 2017

The Power of Youth to Reduce Alcohol and Drug Abuse in Schools

When alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs (ATODs) are such a pervasive and prevalent issue facing teens, how do we help them connect with one another and provide space for them to share their stories in a safe, meaningful way?

Lessons From The West Wing: Building Relational Capacity
November 15 2017

Lessons From The West Wing: Building Relational Capacity

As school administrators we have a moral obligation to build in our staff the “capacity to meet the challenge” of educating today's students. However, in this instance, the capacity that we deal with is known as relational capacity, or the level of trust and safety between a teacher and a student.

Pay It Forward - On Being a Safe School Ambassador
October 12 2017

Pay It Forward - On Being a Safe School Ambassador

I am proud that I was selected from my peers as a leader to take a stand against bullying and mistreatment and serve as a Safe School Ambassador for three years in high school. The Safe School Ambassadors program is unique because it focuses on training students with skills to create a safer school climate and to safely intervene when we, the students, see problems occurring.

Bullying and Suicide – A Strategy For Intervention
September 25 2017

Bullying and Suicide – A Strategy For Intervention

If we know that bullying can lead to suicide, how do we intervene and interrupt in order to promote an alternative response, both by the target as well as by the bystanders, the roughly 85% of a student body that holds tremendous power to change the course of someone else’s life?

Transforming Your School Climate from the Inside-Out: How to Start the School Year Off Right
September 11 2017

Transforming Your School Climate from the Inside-Out: How to Start the School Year Off Right

Starting the school year off right - what does that mean exactly? This time of year can be fraught with anxiety, not only for students but for parents as well. According to the Pew Research Center, “At least half of all parents, regardless of income, worry that their children might be bullied or struggle with anxiety or depression at some point.” What do we do to let students know that we care?

Endings and New Beginnings
May 17 2017

Endings and New Beginnings

Serving as the Founder and Executive Director of Community Matters has been one of the greatest gifts in my life. Working on behalf of all children and youth has grown me as a person, helped me address and heal my own childhood history of bullying and trauma and strengthened my skills and expertise as a thought leader in our areas of service.

From Safe School Ambassador to Middle School Teacher and SSA Program Leader
May 2 2017

From Safe School Ambassador to Middle School Teacher and SSA Program Leader

Back when I was in high school in Red Bluff, California, I was a Safe School Ambassador. Recently I was reflecting on how this program had made a difference in my life, because in fact, if it hadn’t been for the SSA program, I would never have become a teacher, and I never would have met Nate.

Youth Empowerment: An Essential Driver for Creating Safer Schools
April 18 2017

Youth Empowerment: An Essential Driver for Creating Safer Schools

As educators and caring adults, we’re always looking for ways to reduce student’s risky behavior, increase their attendance and improve their achievement. What we have often failed to recognize, is that having students serve as the “change agents and peace makers” on school campuses goes a long way to optimizing the conditions for learning and positive behavior to occur.

Sexual Misconduct: Students Know When Employees “Cross the Line”
April 5 2017

Sexual Misconduct: Students Know When Employees “Cross the Line”

The level of sexual misconduct taking place in our schools is frightening. We hear about cases almost weekly or daily in the news. The research suggests only about 25% of the students that become involved in these improper relationships tell their parents. The research also indicates that approximately 10% of students experience behavior or comments that are inappropriate.

An Intrapersonal Narrative of LGBTQ+
March 21 2017

An Intrapersonal Narrative of LGBTQ+

The truth is that LGBTQ+ folks still suffer a myriad of struggles on a daily basis. If we cannot change the world around us to be more accepting overnight, then how do we cope and/or strengthen our internal selves to take on the day-to-day struggles?

Stay Connected - Subscribe to Community Matters Newsletters

 

Connect with Us

Join the 
Waking Up Courage Community

Facebook Twitter YouTube Blog

Subscribe to our blog

Categories


Types


Tag Cloud

zero-tolerance policy, youth gang prevention, whole school climate, ways to stop bullying, waking up courage, teen suicide, teen drug use, teen alcohol use, teacher-student relationships, suspension costs and losses, suicide prevention, social-emotional learning, social media, sexual harassment on campus, school safety, school climate research, school climate legislation, school climate, school bus bullying, school bullying policy, school bullying, safer schools, safe schools, safe school ambassadors, risk management, rick phillips, restorative practices, restorative justice, post-election hate crimes, peacemaker, pbis, national bullying prevention month, monitoring children's online activity, mindfulness, lgbtqi youth, inside-out approach, how to stop bullying, hazing, hate crimes in schools, cyberbullying, columbine, bystander to upstander, bullying video, bullying prevention, bullying laws, bullying, bully, back to school, atod, adolescent substance use