Peers Making Peace

An Evidence-Based Practice

Description

Peers Making Peace (PMP) is an innovative peer-mediation program that uses a preventive approach for handling conflicts both in and out of school. The program is based on a combination of strategies that include life and social skills training, conflict prevention and resolution, and peer-led modeling and coaching. The program is designed to affect students in prekindergarten through 12th grade with research-based, age-appropriate, and developmentally sound curricula for each level. Each participating school selects a group of 15 to 24 students who represent the community's racial, ethnic, and gender demographics. Students learn skills such as conflict resolution, nonverbal communication, questioning, and maintaining neutrality. The training activities for students vary in length from 10 to 45 minutes. The maximum training time each day varies by age group: elementary students receive no more than 3 hours a day on three different occasions, middle school no more than 4 hours on three different occasions, and high school students no more than 5 hours on three different occasions. Selected students apply the skills they learn by serving as third-party mediators to help those involved in conflict reach mutually satisfactory agreements. Most mediation takes place before or after school, during lunch, or during activity time. Students take responsibility for solving their own problems, which allows teachers to concentrate on teaching. A pretraining needs assessment with materials assists schools in preparing for program implementation.

Goal / Mission

The goal of this program is to improve the school environment by reducing violence, assaults, discipline referrals, and increasing academic performance.

Results / Accomplishments

The evaluation of the Peers Making Peace program used a pre-post, quasi-experimental design with six experimental and six comparison schools in two school districts (one experimental and one control). The evaluation found that there was a significant difference in discipline referrals, assaults, and expulsions postevaluation between intervention and control schools. Discipline referrals decreased by 57.7 percent in treatment schools, but increased by 8.4 percent in control schools. Assaults decreased by 90.2 percent in treatment schools, while increasing by 33.0 percent in control schools. Expulsions decreased by 73.0 percent in treatment schools, but increased by 6.2 percent in control schools.

About this Promising Practice

Primary Contact
Susan Armoni, Ph.D.
The National Mediation Center®
paxUnited®
2155 Chenault Drive, Suite 410
Carrollton, TX 75006
(972) 671.9550
susan.armoni@paxunited.org
http://www.paxUnited.org
Categories
Education / School Environment
Social Environment / Children's Social Environment
Public Safety / Crime & Crime Prevention
Organization(s)
paxUnited
Source
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention's Model Programs Guide (MPG)
Date of publication
2003
For more details
http://www.ojjdp.gov/mpg/mpgSearch.aspx