Middle Grades Peer Mediation
Wednesday, May 09, 2007 1:20 PM

Conflicts are part of everyday life. Middle grades students at Lake Harriet now have a positive way to settle conflicts called mediation. Peer mediation is when students help students mediate their own disputes. Common conflicts between students are: “he said/she said” rumors, name-calling, friendships gone amiss, and threats.  Student conflicts that are not resolved may result in loss of friends, verbal attacks, and disruptive behaviors that can make learning more difficult.

Mediation is a voluntary and cooperative process where two parties who are having a conflict communicate with each other and look for agreement. It is a problem-solving approach where no one loses.  At Lake Harriet we have 13 middle grades students who were given six hours of training in the skill of conflict resolution. The mediators facilitate the mediation process when a request is made. In this way, students are given an opportunity to solve their own problems without an adult doing it for them. Teachers, students, and mediators all can make a request for mediation. All middle grades teachers, administrators, and specialists have a copy of the mediation request form. The mediations occur during the school day with an effort to minimize loss of academic time.

Please encourage you middle-schooler to use peer mediation. If you have questions or comments about the Peer Mediation program, please contact Julie Hirsch, School Psychologist, at 668-3318.