Mediators have less work, no class period

Arriana Smith

While the conflict mediation program has been successful in the past, this year it has not reached its full potential, according to Judy Rauzi, Healthy Start coordinator. This is due to the lack of a class, which prevents mediators from available to students for a certain period.

Rauzi said there were more meditations last year than this year. The program was more successful because the students in the class were able to advertise their services. Being proactive allowed the student body to be aware of the program.

“The team was more visible last year and was able to plan events that broadcasted the program,” Rauzi said.
This year mediations are more based on a reference by administration after an altercation. The program is designed to resolve fights before things get out of hand or administration is forced to suspend or expel a student. However, a student can go to see a conflict mediator with any problem, personal or not.

Rauzi chose to not have a class this year because she felt that she could not provide enough education to her students for a two hour block. Along with benefiting other students, she felt that the students in the class should receive some benefit as well. A lot of it comes down to the fact that she is not trained as a teacher – she is only a coordinator.

But she did offer students a chance to T.A. for the health office. This would allow them to both take part in mediations and be occupied for the full two hours. Many of this year’s mediators chose to not take that opportunity because they could not fit it into busy schedules. This also presented a problem because mediators were not able to be pulled out of class.

“Since most of the conflict mediators take Advanced Placement classes it is hard to pull them out of their class for the mediations,” Rauzi said.

Although the program has not been as proactive, mediators have still made an impact with the 35 mediations they have done this year so far.

Senior Mitchell Woodbury is the only student who is a T.A. for the health office. He enjoys helping others and knowing he is making a difference, but being the main mediator and sometimes the only mediator he struggles.

”I may not be the best for someone, but maybe a girl mediator is,” Woodbury said.
Rauzi hopes the program will expand and evolve into a class once again. She also hopes that more advertising will make students aware of this program. Rauzi has come to prove that no matter the program’s shortcomings, she is not going to give up. She is going to continue to help students in every way she possibly can.

“I’m really missing what we had last year,” Rauzi said. “Hopefully next year, I’ll be able to have at least one class.”


Check out this article to learn about how the program was created