Conflict Resolution and Peer Mediation
Middletown students in grades 1-12 are getting training in conflict resolution and peer mediation with the help of Barbara Driscoll, a youth trainer from the Dispute Resolution Center located in Goshen, NY.
Students, in grades 4 through 12, are being trained in peer mediation and elementary students are attending the ABC’s of Getting Along Workshop which teaches vital conflict resolution skills to Middletown's youngest students.
About the ABC’s of Getting Along Workshop
The 40-minute workshop educates approximately 30 students at one time. The children, led by a conflict resolution trainer, discuss anger, look at what makes them angry, and examine some healthy ways to control anger. Students also explore appropriate means to handle their peer conflicts. The trainer utilizes songs, poems, skits, and puppets to engage students and encourage participation.
About Peer Mediation
Conflict Resolution education goes hand-in-hand with school mediation programs to help create an atmosphere of respect, tolerance, and communication. In Middletown, students are using peer mediation to help deal with student conflict.
As part of peer mediation services, disputing students voluntarily meet with trained student peer mediators to resolve situations that may arise. Not only do the peer mediators gain invaluable communication and problem solving skills in training, but participating students learn from their peers' positive role modeling. Peer mediators also assist school staff by freeing teachers’ time from handling disruptions. As a result, more time is focused on academics.
The long range goal of the program is to provide schools with an integral problem solving strategy. All trainings are implemented as part of the Safe Schools/Healthy Students (SS/HS) grant.