A school-wide bullying prevention program: Steps to Respect

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Steps to Respect is a program developed by the Committee for Children in Seattle, WA, USA, to decrease bullying in schools and help students build supportive relationships. This program leverages the whole school community in targeting bullying, and includes a three-phase implementation plan: 1) school administrators take stock of their school environment and bullying policies and procedures; 2) all adults in the building (from teachers to cafeteria workers and bus drivers) are trained in identifying and dealing with bullying incidents; and 3) 11 classroom-based lessons are taught, focusing on topics such as making friends, understanding and recognizing feelings, and dealing with bullying. Extension activities are available for building social and emotional skills, and family handouts are also provided for each lesson.

Research has shown positive outcomes of the Steps to Respect program on students’ social and emotional skill performance and school climate, as well as decreased conduct problems. Steps to Respect is also recognized by the Canadian Best Practices Portal as a “best practice” program, by CASEL as a “SELect” program, and by Blueprints as a “promising” program.

Please note that the Steps to Respect program has been modified into a more recent “Bullying Prevention Unit” that can be used as an accompaniment to the Second Step program.