Administrator Magazine
Scholastic Administrator is a must-read resource for 240,000 of today's results-driven school leaders. Every issue features leadership for education executives, insight and analysis into what's next in education, and reporting on cutting-edge technologies in real life applications.

Bully's Big Goal

With DVD release, director aims for a million viewers.

By Wayne D'Orio | Winter 2013

Director Lee Hirsch put it simply. “This is the moment we’ve been waiting for.”

The moment arrived this March, with the release of a special educator’s DVD and Toolkit version of his documentary Bully. It’s been a long time coming for Hirsch, who shot the film in 2009–10, debuted the movie in July 2011, and steered it to a theatrical release in March 2012. After a flap over a few profanities almost caused the film to be rated R and miss a large part of his intended audience, Hirsch finally has the chance to meet his ambitious goal: getting his work seen by one million students by the end of this year.

“That’s roughly one in ten students,” he says. “That will create a tipping point, a profound ripple effect.”

The $29 resource kit, which includes the DVD and an in-school public screening license, is designed to help educators leverage the power of the film. He’s already a third of the way to his goal, thanks to a number of mass viewings—it was screened for 6,500 students in Los Angeles and 12,000 students and 500 teachers in Salt Lake City.

Though his district already has a “thoughtful and comprehensive” anti-bullying program, SLC superintendent McKell Withers says that having students see the film provides a powerful common experience. The logistics of getting so many students to a theater were complicated, Withers says, but the payoff came when “quite a few” teachers thanked him for allowing them to better understand bullying.

“Seeds are planted that weren’t there before. It’s led to decency and respect” among students, he adds.  

The film has already wrought big changes in Sioux City, Iowa, which granted Hirsch permission to shoot in its schools. As a result of bullying incidents he caught on film, the district has installed cameras and microphones on school buses and reworked its policies to better address bullying and its consequences.

Hirsch applauds better policies, but cautions that policies are not enough. Principals and superintendents need to set the tone for students and staff. “Not everyone has the tools they need,” Hirsch says. “A high number of teachers are not trained on bullying.”

Even as he aims to reach a million students, Hirsch recognizes that change has to come one student at a time.

Learn more at

—Spring 2013—

  • Scholastic Store
  • The Scholastic Store  
    Freak the Mighty

    Freak the Mighty

    by Rodman Philbrick

    Learning disabled and physically overgrown Max has no friends until a tiny and brilliant boy moves into the house next door. The two misfits forge a friendship that gives them enough courage to face school, bullies, and even Max's jailed father. The inspiration for the feature film The Mighty, this moving and funny story will inspire any kid who's ever felt like an outsider.

    Special Afterwords edition includes:

    • About the Author
    • Q&A With the Author
    • Rodman Philbrick's Writing Tips
    • Excerpt From Max the Mighty
    Learning Highlights
    This memorable story imparts valuable lessons in the true meaning of friendship, tolerance, and believing in yourself.

    $5.59 You save: 20%
    books;paperback books;paperbacks | Ages 10-14
    Add To Cart
    Freak the Mighty
    Ages 10-14 $5.59
  • Scholastic Store
  • The Scholastic Store  
    Knights of the Lunch Table # 1

    Knights of the Lunch Table # 1

    by Frank Cammuso and Frank Cammuso

    New student Artie King is a nice, comics-loving kid who just wants to ease into life at Camelot Middle School without attracting too much attention. But by second period, Artie already has enemies. He tripped Camelot's mean principal by mistake. An older kid isn't happy about the lunch he stole from Artie. (Well, Artie tried to warn him that sandwich was made by his pesky sister . . . out of boogers and soap!) And Artie just can't seem to stay out of the way of big Mo and The Horde, the bunch of brawny bullies who rule the school.

    To top it off, Artie has been assigned a funky old locker that no one has ever been able to open. Artie can do it, though, and finds the locker mysteriously full of all kinds useful stuff. He's also made a few pals in the lunchroom, Percy and Wayne, and the science teacher, Mr. Merlyn, who seems weird but nice.

    When a humiliated Mo fails to open Artie's locker, he challenges him and his pals to a do-or-die dodgeball game. The Horde vs. The Knights of the Lunch Table. Losers get creamed.

    On game night, the Knights' gym clothes disappear. Artie handily finds new ones in the locker (okay, the tee-shirts are pink . . . ). But that doesn't help the Knights in the dodgeball ring, where The Horde is just picking them off. Another visit to the locker and Artie's back with a secret weapon: Percy's missing pet spider. Mo is afraid of spiders, big-time. The score is about to be evened!

    $7.99 You save: 20%
    books;paperback books;paperbacks | Ages 7-10
    Add To Cart
    Knights of the Lunch Table # 1
    Ages 7-10 $7.99
Help | Privacy Policy




(Separate multiple email addresses with commas)

Check this box to send yourself a copy of the email.


Scholastic respects your privacy. We do not retain or distribute lists of email addresses.