Bullying Prevention: Empowering Upstanders

“The Leadership Program… [has] helped us begin a dialogue about respect and Upstander behaviors. I believe they are helping transform PS 107 into a safer and happier school environment.” –Principal Eve Litwack PS107 in Brooklyn, NY

Four of five students involved in a bullying incident are not bullies or victims, but witnesses.

With the ubiquity of bullying in today’s schools, the power for change lies in the sheer numbers of these outliers, for witnesses can either be bystanders—who stand by and do nothing or even encourage the bully—or Upstanders, who recognize that something is wrong and do what they can to make it right.

The role of an Upstander is a precarious one when they are not equipped with the skills and techniques needed to deescalate conflict. Often armed with only good intentions, a fight can be accidentally escalated, or the victim target can even shift to encompass the student who’s willing to stand up.


Leadership offers a variety of ways for your to empower Upstanders in your school community. Whatever specific issue your community is facing—from cyber-bullying to an excess of conflict in the hallways, we come prepared with a comprehensive, customized approach with implementation possibilities that include:

  • Classroom curriculum
  • Online, film-based curriculum
  • Theatre-based assemblies
  • Peer mentoring training
  • Parent workshops
  • Staff trainings

Check out some highlights of the evaluation results from Leadership’s Empowering Upstanders as implemented in a school improvement grant in four school in Queens, NY.

Change your norms. Change your culture. Change lives.

Contact us to start Empowering Upstanders in your school community.

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