Peer Mediation

Shady Spring

 W.H.O Squad


                Peer Mediation Information

  • The peer mediation program has been in place for 16 years at SSES.
  • We usually have 20 + mediations each year and each year there are approximately 30 mediators.
  • This article states the following data to support having a peer mediation program: Conflict Resolution In Our Schools: The Challenges That Lie Ahead by Sam Blank.

Peer mediation programs yield significant benefit in developing constructive social and conflict behavior in children at all educational levels. Exposure to peer mediation programs and course work in negotiation has a significant and lasting impact on students' conflict attitude and behavior (Jones, 1997). 

Students who are direct recipients of conflict resolution training benefit the most; however students without direct training also benefit. Research data clearly demonstrates that exposure to peer mediation:

  • Reduces personal conflict
  • Increases the tendency to help others with conflict
  • Increase pro-social values
  • Decreases aggressiveness
  • Increases perspective taking and conflict competence

Schools that have models and mechanisms in place for conflict resolution create a healthy environment in which: 

1. Each person feels physically and psychologically free from threats and danger and can find opportunities to work and learn with others for the mutual achievement of all. 

2. Each person's unique individuality and diversity is respected and celebrated. 

3. All persons are empowered to take responsibility for trying to resolve their own conflicts and possess the skills necessary to achieve this.”

  • The W.H.O. Squad is a group of fourth and fifth graders who have been trained in peer mediation during two days during the summer at Shady Spring.

Here are some basic guidelines for the mediation program:

  • The mediators explain their roles and how to request a mediation at mini grade level assemblies at the end of September.
  • They may wear their peer mediator shirt whenever they like, but we will have some designated days to wear them also.
  • Third, fourth and fifth grade students may request mediations. Second graders who are able to articulate their problems well can also use mediation if the teacher feels they can handle it.
  • Mediation request forms will be outside Ms.Knauer's office AFTER the mini assemblies.  Students complete the form and turn it in to Ms.Knauer.
  • Once Ms.Knauer receives a request form she will schedule the mediation (usually a day or two later).
  • Teachers can also request that students have a mediation.  The teacher should complete the form if they are making the request.
  • We can only mediate 2 or 3 students at a time.  Large groups problems cannot be done through mediation.
  • Mediations generally take about 20 minutes to complete.  The students sign a contract with the solutions they agree to try.  Ms. Knauer keeps these in her office.
  • Parents are not contacted regarding mediations.
  • Teachers are only notified of solutions if their input is needed, ex. To move seats, etc.
  • Students should be encouraged to request a mediation for any peer problems that they can’t seem to solve on their own.
  • Peer mediators do not do mediations in the classroom or at recess. They DO NOT break up fights.
  • Ms. Knauer holds these students to high behavioral expectations.  Though this isn’t usually a problem, if a mediator is not behaving appropriately Ms. Knauer will meet with them to get them back on track.
  • Students can be put on probation to give them time to improve behavior issues, and they can also be “suspended” from the group of a specified amount of time.  Only Ms. Knauer can put mediators on probation or suspension.
  •  Throughout the year, the mediators may be involved in some community service type programs (ex. food drive).  Meetings will be held during lunch times whenever possible.  Sometimes Ms. Knauer  will meet with the mediators right after announcements if she has something important to give them. These meetings will be very brief.

Ms. Knauer is very proud of these students and their desire to help their peers. If you have any questions about the program, please ask!