There are times when we all need help
working out our problems. The Walsh Middle School Peer Mediation program is
designed to assist students who are experiencing a conflict with each other.
Students then voluntarily agree to resolve their dispute with the assistance
of peer mediators who are trained in the process and necessary skills. These
skills include, but are not limited to, active listening, keeping students
focused and abiding by the ground rules, remaining neutral, guiding disputants
in brainstorming for solutions and ultimately settling on a solutions that
works for both parties in the conflict. Students may refer themselves or
others for peer mediation. Mediation request forms can be found throughout
the campus and in the Walsh website Backpack.
Reasons for Instituting a School-Based Mediation Program
1. Conflict is a natural human state that often accompanies change. It is
better approached with skills than by avoidance.
2. Conflict in the school setting can be dealt with more effectively by means
other than expulsion, suspension, court intervention, and detention.
3. The use of mediation in school-based disputes can improve communication
between and among students, teachers, administrators, and parents. It can
improve the school climate and provide a forum for addressing common concerns.
4. The use of mediation to resolve conflict can reduce violence, vandalism,
chronic school absence, and suspension.
5. Mediation training helps both students and teachers broaden their
understanding about themselves and others and provide them with lifetime
6. Mediation training increases students’ interest in conflict resolution,
justice, and the American legal system while encouraging a higher level of
7. Shifting responsibility for solving appropriate school conflicts from
adults to students frees both teachers and administrators to concentrate more
on teaching than on discipline.
8. Recognizing that young people are competent to participate in the
resolution of their own disputes encourages student growth and gives students
skills such as listening, critical thinking, and problem solving that are
basic to all learning.
9. Mediation training, with its emphasis upon listening to others’ points of
view and the peaceful resolution of differences, assists in preparing students
to live in a multicultural world.
10. Mediation provides a system of problem solving uniquely suited to the
nature of young people’s problems. They frequently used it for problems they
would not take to parents, teachers, or principals.