Youth Voice Project
Youth Voice Project
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In this landmark study, authors Stan Davis and Charisse L. Nixon add youth voices to the national debate about bullying and peer mistreatment. Provided in these pages is a detailed analysis of findings from their survey of over 13,000 students across 31 schools in the United States—plus suggestions for meaningful change based on students’ responses.
Youth Voice Project includes an overview of the project’s rationale and methodology, a description of the characteristics and impact of peer mistreatment, and an analysis of the effectiveness of various types of response to peer mistreatment: self-actions, peer-actions, and adult actions.
Students’ views of what works—and doesn’t work—in response to bullying are enlightening and sometimes surprising: When asked what made things better or worse in a bullying situation, youth reported that actions involving peer alliance and friendship made things better and that it was effective to access help from others. However, some classic adult advice for youth on bullying, such as “telling them to stop” and “telling them how they're making you feel,” could actually make things much worse.
Bridging the gap between research and practice, the text offers much-needed direction for educators, administrators, parents, and all other stakeholders. Conclusions focus on ways to make schools safe, inclusive, and supportive environments for learning—specifically, by promoting efforts to improve school connections, social equity, and what the authors call the “Four Rs”: respect, relationships, resiliency, and responsiveness.
"[Youth Voice Project] is the game-changer the field of bullying prevention has needed for some time. It debunks many cultural adult mindsets about bullying and clarifies what really works to provide safety and belonging to our marginalized students in school. The data present a treasure trove of fresh ideas, directly from students, on how adults and students can work together to build caring school communities."
—Chuck Saufler, lead trainer for bullying education,
Maine Law and Civics Education Program,
University of Maine School of Law
“Not only did a growing understanding of the Youth Voice Project data help a school I was working with over the past year become a more positive environment for both students and staff, it also played a role in their movement from being designated Persistently Low Performing to being recognized as a Reward School. It clearly demonstrates how changes in our attitude and the way we engage students can make a BIG difference.”
Co-Founder, Michigan Bully-Free Schools Program
“Stan Davis’s signature insightfulness into the unique perspectives of young people, combined with Charisse Nixon’s keen research skills and developmental expertise, has produced one of the most valuable research projects in this field in the last five years.”
—Elizabeth K. Englander, PhD,
Director, Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center,
Bridgewater State University
"The Youth Voice Project findings have been an invaluable resource as we strive to debunk the societal myths and misperceptions surrounding bullying prevention and learn what truly helps kids develop prosocial relationships and resilience."
community schools educator and school climate coordinator
"The Youth Voice Project gave us a true picture as to what strategies have actually helped students in cases of peer-to-peer aggression. The importance of this cannot be stressed enough as it is the students who are the eyes and ears of the school, and therefore they should be the ones to tell us what works and what doesn't. These findings are instrumental in moving forward with this work and in making the necessary modifications to some of our misguided beliefs."
—--Michelle B. MacPherson,
bullying prevention coordinator,
Moncton school system, New Brunswick, Canada
- Visit the authors' website for additional insight and observations related to this study
- Stop Bullying Now! The Youth Voice Project
- The Youth Voice Project: What actually helps in bullying situations?
- Preventing And Recovering From Bullying—What Works And What Doesn't (Forbes, 11/12/2013)
Click on the arrow in the screen below to view the video of author Stan Davis describing some of his views on bullying.
- Anger and Conflict Management
- Assessment and Response to Intervention
- Behavior Management
- Bullying Prevention
- Girls and Boys Programs
- Grief Counseling
- Life Skills and Character Development
- Mental Health Issues
- Motivation and School Success
- Other Professional Resources
- Parenting Solutions
- Personal and Social Development
- Social and Emotional Learning
- Social Skills
- Special Education
- Stress Management
- College and University Professors
- General Education Teachers K-12
- Mental Health Professionals
- Parents and Parent Coordinators
- School Administrators K-12
- School Counselors K-12
- School Psychologist K-12
- Social Workers
- Special Education Professionals