Embrace Civility in the Digital Age promotes a 21st Century approach to address bullying and youth risk in the digital age.  This approach promotes positive norms, increases effective skills and resiliency, and encourages young people to be helpful allies who positively intervene when they witness peers being hurt or at risk.


For the last several years, I have dedicated my work to addressing the challenge of bullying. I knew from writing my book on cyberbullying, that there were concerns about the illusion that adults could control these situations through rules, supervision, and punishing “the bully” when these situations emerged in the digital arena.

So I launched an in-depth study of the research, as well as the case law and regulatory guidance. What I found, unfortunately, is that the approach secondary schools have been using for the last decade has not resulted in any decline in student reports they have been bullied.

What I have developed, and am continuing to develop, are positive strategies for schools and others to more powerfully engage young people in promoting positive relations and more effectively reducing bullying and other hurtful behavior–and limiting its harmful effect.

You can access a document that provides an overview of my work. A short video is under development.

Positive Relations @ School (& Elsewhere)

Legal Ramifications & Positive Strategies to Address Bullying & Harassment

Positive Relations @ School (& Elsewhere) is Nancy’s new book that provides guidance to schools on how to reduce bullying and harassment and limit its harmful effects in a manner that will both effectively address the well-being of students and assist schools from avoiding litigation and civil rights enforcement actions.

Be a Friend ~ Lend a Hand

The NEW version of Be a Friend ~ Lend a Hand: How Young People Can Reduce Bullying, Disrespect & “Drama” is now available at NO CHARGE for schools. You can access the Student Booklet. Other materials are being slightly revised and will be available January 5.

Be a Friend ~ Lend a Hand provides a short instructional booklet for young people that is packed full of research-based insight on reducing bullying and other forms of hurtful behavior, increasing positive peer intervention, and increasing resilience. A slideshow and discussion survey for young people is also provided.

Restore: Ensuring Effective Investigations & Interventions in Bullying Situations

A companion book to Positive Relations @ School (& Elsewhere), Restore provides in-depth insight into how designated staff in schools can effectively conduct a formal investigation into more serious incidents or situations and guidance on positive approaches to promote restoration and resiliency. This book will be available early 2015.

Professional Development

Embrace Civility in the Digital Age is developing a “flipped classroom” approach for professional development. Key issues will be addressed in short segments. Each segment will have a 4 page document and a short video. Staff should watch and read this independently, at a time of their choosing. At the end of each video will be questions to ask students–to foster greater student voice. Staff should record their thoughts and the insight from students on a one-page reporting form that will support discussion at the staff or committee meeting.

Professional development resources for general staff will be available January 5. Resources for leadership staff will be available shortly thereafter.


Parents can obtain a new booklet, Your Bullied Child or Teen: A Parent Empowerment Guide, and watch a video that provides guidance. An additional document on digital safety is also on this page. This booklet is being updated and will soon be released as a book.

Youth Organizations

The research ground insight that has supported the development of Positive Relations @ School (& Elsewhere), Be a Friend ~ Lend a Hand, and Resolve also support the development of positive strategies for youth organizations, including summer camps and after-school organizations, as well as youth clubs that are seeking to empower their members to engage in leadership roles. Resources to support youth organizations are under development.

Medical & Mental Health Professionals

The role of community-based medical and mental health professionals cannot be understated. This is especially true of pediatricians. Bullying may be grounded in concerns that are medical, including obesity, disabilities, and the like. Bullying often results in psychosomatic illness.

Pediatricians and other medical and mental health professional who work directly with youth need greater insight into how to screen for the potential that bullying is occurring, how to effectively communicate their concerns to the school, and how to support parents in reducing the harmful impact. Older materials are currently available. These resources are being updated.

Expert Services

Nancy Willard is available for workshops and can also provide webinars for professional development.

Nancy also provides legal research, mediation, and settlement assistance to attorneys working for school districts or student plaintiffs.


Nancy’s resources to address digital safety are found here. This work has been “back-benched.”

Informational Documents

Over the years, Nancy Willard has written numerous reports and articles. You can find these resources on this page.


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