MHS Pulleying Program

What is "Pulleying”?

“Pulleying” consists of positive student-to-student interactions that:

*             assist, include, encourage, support, appreciate, or respect fellow students

*             show kindness to fellow students or create meaningful student-to-student bonds

*             defend or protect fellow students from bullying, unfairness, discrimination, or exclusion

*             help fellow students succeed, be safe, be well, or receive adult assistance when needed

Unlike bullying, which hurts others and damages the school environment, “pulleying” helps others and improves the school environment for all. Similar to how a pulley creates powerful upward force with just a little effort, simple acts of student kindness lift a fellow student’s spirit and benefit our shared school climate. Real-life examples of past-reported MHS student acts of “pulleying” are featured here:  EXEMPLARY PAST REPORTS OF MHS STUDENT PULLEYING

Who leads the pulleying program at MHS? 

Pulleying is not something the school is something the school noticed and wishes to accentuate.  MHS students regularly demonstrate an exceptional level of student-to-student courtesy and support.  While other schools have bullying problems, we noticed that our students live in the solution....all we did was name it with a cute play on words (pulleying instead of bullying) that matched the way MHS students lift each other up.  So, the leaders of pulleying at MHS are the kind, confident students.  MHS Counselor Mr. Landgraf simply serves as the program's coordinator. 

“This program addresses very important issues. It rests on solid theoretical grounds and appears to be really wise in how it is being implemented. I commend Mr. Landgraf's novel work in a great program that I suspect is very meaningfully impacting people's lives."  

- Dr. Robert M. Sapolsky 

Stanford University Professor of Neurology and Neurosurgery

How Do I Report a "pulley" student for such acts of kindness, courage, inclusion, support, or connectedness?

Any student or community member can "report a student for pulleying" by emailing Mr. Landgraf at, seeing him in person, or calling 815-539-7446 x 506. Teachers who observe acts of pulleying may commend students directly and discretely.  For the first few years of the MHS Pulleying program (2018-2023), based on an anonymous review of reports of outstanding acts of Pulleying, multiple seniors were selected as Senior Pulley Awardees or Pulleying Honorable Mentions. The recipients are listed here. 

Upon what is "Pulleying" based?

Pulleying stands on five research-proven foundations: 

1. The social-stratification, primate-behavior-mimicking, and primate stress research of Stanford University Professor Dr. Robert Sapolsky's study of the Keekorok baboon troop 

2. The tenets of Solutions-Focused Therapy 

3. The internationally-acclaimed psychogenetic human motivation science of Dr. Steven Reiss and the Reiss Motivation Profile (MHS Counselor Mr. Landgraf is a top-internationally-ranked Certified Reiss Motivation Profile Master) 

4. The principles of social psychology and in-grouping/out-grouping of Dr. Gordon Allport, 

5. Several empowered-upstander, observer/bystander, and intervention principles from multiple sociological, educational, and psychological studies. 

Pulleying's structure also aligns with the "Four-Way Test" of Interact / Rotary International and the student-benefiting strengths of diversity, equity, inclusion, and school safety.

The MHS Pulley Program has received national commendations, praise from national student motivational speaker Eddie Slowikowski, a 2018 grant and supplemental bonus grant from The Southern Poverty Law Center's Teaching Tolerance/Learning for Justice Educators' Grant Program, a 2021 grant from the Mendota Education Foundation, major and ongoing generous support from both Mendota McDonalds locations, support from the in-town Mendota Subway, Mendota Pizzas by Marchelloni's, and Peru Steak 'N Shake, and significant support from select MHS faculty, students, employees, and area community members.