Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence

Our Approach

The SCSS Model integrates over twenty years of research on school safety and violence prevention into a process that values and uplifts the unique real-life experiences of school communities. It balances what our educators, students, and families need to thrive with what research shows is effective in creating safe and inclusive schools.

Our approach is:


The SCSS Model uses of a broad definition for school safety that includes social, emotional, and physical safety and encourages the use of both prevention and intervention when addressing school needs.


Schools using the SCSS Model utilize individual- and system-level data collected from a variety of sources to identify school-specific strengths, challenges, needs, and gaps, set priorities, and make strategic decisions. Learn more about the surveys SCSS can provide your school here.


Throughout SCSS Model implementation, school teams will develop, implement, and monitor an individualized School Action Plan that addresses their data-identified needs and incorporates the best programs and strategies aligned to their unique context.


We know every school community is unique, so the tools and processes included in the SCSS Model can be tailored to fit the context and build the capacity of each school. SCSS staff are committed to partnering with schools to support SCSS Model implementation and adaptations.

SCSS Model

SCSS Model Graphic showing concentric circles of Develop Plan, Implement Plan, and Monitor Impact in outer ring; Gather Data in inner ring; and Engage School in center circle.

Engage School

Build an inclusive foundation by incorporating diverse perspectives and ensuring all voices are heard

Gather Data

Collect information from your community on school climate, systems that influence school safety, and community readiness and motivation to take action towards change

Develop Plan

Create an action plan informed by data and specific to your school’s goals, resources, and community

Implement a Plan

Make progress toward improving school safety and climate using evidence-based prevention and intervention programs and strategies

Monitor Impact

Continually update your plan in response to new data, community feedback, and school priorities