Change Agent In-School Violence Initiative

The Lowery Institute ‘Agents of Change’ Program connects high-achieving undergraduate and graduate students with elementary, middle and high school students in Atlanta’s historic Westside community. In addition, work in an alternative school is available to some Change Agents. The In-School program highlights the prevalence of violence in our school systems- ranging from the ways our youth handle conflict, addressing issues of bullying, and escalate difficult situations.

Utilizing the non-violence principles of the Institute and coupling them with conflict management, alternative dispute resolution and peer mediation training,our program works directly with fifth (5) through twelfth (12) grade students through peer-led interactions and engagements during school hours Monday-Thursday.

The program allows the Lowery Institute to do the following:

  • Perform mission-critical work that advances the strategic initiatives of the Institute in the areas of social justice, nonviolent interpersonal engagement, and intergenerational knowledge transfer.
  • Engage undergraduate and graduate students in a service-learning leadership program designed to increase civic participation amongst a burgeoning group of student activists.
  • Work with K-12 APS students in both small and large group dimensions to create positive self-identity and increased efficacy amongst ‘at-risk’ student population, primarily concentrated in the Washington High School cluster.
  • Gather information through observation of and engagement with APS K-12 students in order to assess the level of conflict to be addressed by their undergraduate and graduate peer mentors.
  • Identify the best environment for students to receive small group instruction.
  • Build relationships with teachers, administrators and curriculum development staff at JELI partner schools.
  • Interact with influential leaders in the metro Atlanta community and the educational arena to enhance the servant leadership capacity of Change Agents as the next generation of leadership.
  • Expand the capacity of the Lowery Institute to empower lesser-served members of Atlanta’s Westside community to effect positive change.
  • Explore, support, and inspire thoughtful dialogue and engagement with all those working for the betterment of our communities.

2017-2018 Partner Schools

Name of Partner School

Physical Address Website

The Forrest Hill Academy

2930 Forrest Hills Dr, Atlanta, GA 30315

Brown Middle School

765 Peeples St SW, Atlanta, GA 30310

Dunbar Elementary School


500 Whitehall Terrace SW, Atlanta, GA 30312

M. Agnes Jones Elementary School

1040 Fair St SW, Atlanta, GA 30314

Tuskegee Airmen Global Academy

1654 S Alvarado Terrace SW, Atlanta, GA 30311

Lowery Institute Change Agent Curriculum 

The Lowery Institute Change Agent curriculum combines conflict management, alternative dispute resolution and peer mediation training with the non-violence principles and values of Drs. Joseph and Evelyn Lowery through peer-led inter-generational training, workshops and interactive activities. The Lowery Institute Curriculum is focused on de-escalating potential conflict through the five designated markers: Stop, Think, Engage, Process, and Start Over (S.T.E.P.S.). The curriculum is structured to reinforce each of the steps around topic including: respect/disrespect, use of violence, anger management, emotional intelligence, relationships, trust building, discipline, active listening, friendship, acknowledgment, teamwork and problem-solving.