Peer Mediation

Conflict is both natural and inevitable when people interact. It is neither good nor bad, but the response can either be destructive or productive. Communication is the most effective way to resolve differences between individuals.

One of the most frequently used skills-based approaches to conflict resolution is peer mediation. Peer mediation relies on neutral third parties to help students engaged in a conflict to use communication, negotiation, and problem-solving skills to reach a mutually beneficial agreement. Mediators don’t render a judgment or force a solution. Their goal is to resolve conflicts by encouraging constructive problem-solving. Positive effects have been found in elementary, middle, and high schools with children of all ability levels and diverse backgrounds.

At Lake Harriet Upper we have a group of Middle Grades students (6th-8th grade) who were selected by their teachers and peers because they show good judgment, engender trust and respect, display leadership skills, and communicate well with others. The mediators received specific training in conflict resolution and mediation and learned the importance of remaining unbiased and keeping information confidential.

Students in grades 4th-8th can use the Peer Mediation program. A teacher, student, or mediator can request a mediation by filling out an online request form (at the upper right of this page) or by contacting a middle grades' teacher, one of the mediators, or Julie Hirsch (School Psychologist) in Room 108A. All mediations are voluntary and each disputant must agree to follow basic ground rules. The mediations occur during the school day with an effort to minimize loss of academic time.

Please encourage your student to use the Lake Harriet Peer Mediation program! If you have questions or comments about Peer Mediation, please contact Julie Hirsch, School Psychologist at 668-3318.

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