Embrace Civility In The Digital Age                 

Make a Positive Difference in the Lives of Young People Today!

The mission of Embrace Civility in the Digital Age is to provide guidance to caring adults so they can better empower young people to embrace civility and foster positive relations.

Embracing civility is an approach that shifts from the failed “rules and punishment"  approach to bullying prevention to the creation of an environment where hurtful behavior is incompatible with the accepted social norms. This requires:

Helping young people gain the values and skills to:

  • Effectively step in to help if they witness hurtful behavior.
  • Stop themselves from being hurtful and make things right if they have been.
  • Be self-confident and respond in a powerfully positive manner if someone is hurtful to them.

Ensuring school staff and other adults who work with young people:

  • Have an accurate understanding of the dynamics of hurtful behavior.
  • Use effective strategies to intervene in hurtful incidents that assist young people in resolving hurtful situations.    

Our Press Release is here!

Contact Us

Creating “Community" in Your School Post Election 2016

Schools are struggling with the harmful impact of Election 2016. I am going to strive to provide resources on this page, as well as articles that will be published on Education World to address this concern. 

In the Bull Pen with Dr. T. 

I am doing a BlogTalkRadio presentation with Dr. T on November 14. A slideshow that illustrates this talk is available. A link to the presentation will follow shortly.

Education World

I am now writing a weekly or bi-weekly article for Education World.

Education Week

Here is an earlier article on Education Week’s Finding Common Ground.


Be a Leader! Embrace Civility

Be a Leader! Embrace Civility is a FREE program for students in 4th through 12th grade. Teach your students the values and skills to foster positive relations!

  • Reach Out. Be kind to those who are treated badly or left out and help resolve conflict.
  • Say “Stop.” Help those who are hurtful stop, accept personal responsibility, and remedy the harm.
  • Report Concerns. Report serious concerns to an adult who can help.
  • Stop, Own it, and Fix It. If you were hurtful, stop yourself and remedy the harm.
  • Be Positively Powerful. Respond effectively if someone is hurtful and become positively powerful.

Given the challenges of the time, Embrace Civility in the Digital Age has produced guidance on how schools can quickly implement an Embrace Civility Initiative. This Initiative can be combined with the Be a Leader! Embrace Civility program. 

Check it out!


Empower Students to Embrace Civility

Empower Students to Embrace Civility is a six Unit professional development online course for educators, offered through eThink, a Moodle Partner. Educators can earn 9 or 12 Continuing Education Units provided through Portland State University through an Independent Study Option. The program is also available for use as a School-Wide Professional Development Program.

This is great opportunity for every educator to gain excellent insight and easy to implement strategies to empower students! 

  • Gain insight into current challenges in bullying prevention research and expert recommendations for a more effective approach.
  • Learn how to better empower students who are targeted with self-confidence and resilience; help those who are hurtful to stop, own it, and fix it; and increase positive interventions by peers.
  • Learn how to more effectively respond to hurtful incidents.

Check It Out

Deliberate Indifference to a Hostile Environment

My sincerest desire is to assist schools in improving their efforts to empower students to embrace civility and foster positive relations, as well as to improve the effectiveness of school staff in responding to hurtful incidents and situations. However, as a former attorney, I also follow what is happening in discriminatory harassment cases. 

Currently, there is a very unfortunate pattern emerging in the decisions, which is resulting in cases being dismissed in situations where there has been extensive ongoing harassment–when all the school officials did was to respond to each incident the student reported. To reduce this kind of harassment requires corrections to the hostile school environment that is supporting the pervasive and persistent harassment. 

I have written a report to assist attorneys for students so they can be more successful in these cases. This insight can also assist schools in responding more effectively if a legal action has been filed or is pending. 

My intent is not to see more schools held financially liable. I am willing, ready, able, and EAGER to help schools better establish a positive school climate that reduces bullying and harassment.

But because I understand the research and the legal standards, I am unwilling to simply stand by to let the National School Board Association convince federal courts that all school officials should be responsible for doing is investigating and intervening in any incident the student has reported. This approach is guaranteed to fail placing millions of young people at high risk!

My intent is to increase the pressure on schools to be held more accountable for their school climate and to take appropriate steps to remedy any hostile environment that is causing emotional harm to students and interfering with their right to receive an education. Here is my paper:

Deliberate Indifference to a Hostile Environment

Additional Resources


Nancy Willard, M.S., J.D., is the Director of Embrace Civility in the Digital Age. Nancy’s approach is grounded in youth empowerment and restorative practices. Read More


BlogTalkRadio interview

Key Recent Articles

Expert Services

Nancy Willard is available for workshops and webinars for professional development. She is also available to assist in litigation or agency enforcement actions. Read More


Over the years, Nancy has written articles and appeared in webinars or interviews. Read More


Over the years, Nancy has written numerous documents and reports. Read More

Cyber Savvy

Nancy’s resources to address digital safety are available. Read More