Being an Upstander

Being an Upstander

Brynn Schlarb, Reporter

It is important to be an upstander and help the people around you. If someone is being a bully to you or someone else it is important to stand up or tell a trusted adult. An upstander is a person who speaks or acts in support of an individual or cause, particularly someone who intervenes on behalf of a person being attacked or bullied. People who stand by and watch something happen to another person are called a bystander. Every student can become an upstander, whether by challenging negative stereotypes with family, standing up to a bully in their school, or encouraging civil discourse when neighbors disagree. Becoming an upstander is about moving from silence to action. Bystanders contribute to the problem. Upstanders stop the problem. It takes courage to be an upstander. Moving from being a bystander to becoming an upstander may not happen overnight. It may start with becoming more aware of the bullying behavior and how it is affecting the lives of the victims. 

I interviewed four people and asked them a couple of questions – 


What is your name?


Katelin VonFeldt


Avy Beltran


Have you ever watched someone get bullied and if so did you do anything about it or did you watch?


Katelin (8th): Kind of


Avy (8th): Yes, I have tried to intervene/tell them to stop, or gone to the person later to try and comfort them.


Has anything ever happened to you and did people help or watch?


Katelin (8th): In kindergarten this one kid threw chairs at other kids and the teacher and a bunch of kids including myself would always come home with bruises. Later the teacher suggested to everybody’s parents to take their kid out of the school. 


Avy (8th) : No, nothing has happened to me.


In general do you consider yourself to be a bystander or an upstander?


Katelin (8th) : Other, I’ve only been the victim


Avy (8th) : Upstander