Whether a student, teacher, parent, faculty or staff member, administrator, school board member, volunteer, or taxpayer, schools impact many lives, and probably yours. With so many people having conversations inside and outside of the school about a myriad of issues, it goes without saying that conflict arises.
In any conflict, it is important to focus on the issue(s) as much as possible. How do you focus on the issues when so many things, often interrelated, are happening at the same time?
Finding the underlying need or needs tends to be a good first step. It is easy to misinterpret strategies for needs. Many people see a need for learning, and a number of ways (strategies) exist to fulfill that need. In some instances, people believe that only one strategy will work and the organization may only choose one. While that sometimes may be true, other times two solutions may be enacted simultaneously to not only meet the underlying need, but do so more fully.
Considering all viable options usually helps make more informed decisions. During respectful conversations, people feel heard. This improves the long-standing communication and may create more buy-in to the final decision.
Mediation supports these important conversations in education by providing a safe space where you may speak your truth, be heard, and create ideas for resolution.