Preparing for mediation


Before engaging in the mediation process for a bullying dispute, it is essential to gather and organise relevant documents that provide a comprehensive understanding of the issues at hand. The preparation of these documents ensures that the mediation sessions are productive and focused. Here is an outline of the necessary documents to prepare for the mediator:

Complaints or incident reports:

Purpose: provide details of specific incidents of bullying.
Contents: date, time, location, and a detailed description of each reported incident. Include any supporting evidence, such as emails, messages, or witness statements.

School policies and procedures:

Purpose: establish the context of school expectations and standards.
Contents: copies of relevant policies on school behaviour, anti-bullying policies, and any relevant procedures for reporting and addressing conflicts.

Student handbook/rules:

Purpose: reference for understanding school policies and expectations.
Contents: sections related to behaviour, conflict resolution procedures, and any specific policies addressing bullying.


Purpose: document communication patterns and potential evidence of bullying.
Contents: relevant message or social media exchanges, including any social media posts that may demonstrate or be related to the alleged bullying.

Incident log:

Purpose: create a chronological record of reported incidents and responses.
Contents: a log summarising each reported incident, actions taken by the school, and any follow-up communication.

Witness statements:

Purpose: provide additional perspectives on the alleged bullying incidents.
Contents: statements from individuals who witnessed or have relevant information about the reported incidents.

Medical reports (if applicable):

Purpose: document any physical or psychological impact on the individuals involved.
Contents: medical reports or assessments related to the health and well-being of the parties affected by bullying.

Previous resolutions or interventions:

Purpose: offer insights into past attempts to address bullying.
Contents: documentation of any previous resolutions, interventions, or actions taken to address bullying issues involving the parties.

Training records:

Purpose: indicate whether students and/or teachers involved have received training on student behaviour and conflict resolution.
Contents: records of relevant training programs attended by the individuals involved in the dispute.

Requests for accommodation (if applicable):

Purpose: identify any accommodations requested by individuals involved in the dispute.
Contents: documentation of requests for accommodation related to bullying incidents.

Conflict resolution attempts (previous warnings etc.):

Purpose: show the school’s efforts to address bullying.
Contents: documentation of any attempts made by the school to resolve the dispute before resorting to mediation.

Student statements or self-reports:

Purpose: allow individuals to share their perspectives and concerns directly.
Contents: statements or reports prepared by the parties involved expressing their views on the bullying issues.

Any relevant legal documents:

Purpose: ensure compliance with legal requirements and considerations.
Contents: any legal documents related to bullying, complaints, or investigations.



Addressing challenges in bullying mediation


Creating a safe environment:

Establish a safe and confidential environment that encourages open expression of concerns and feelings. Encourage participants to share their perspectives without fear of retaliation or judgment.

Promoting transparency:

Emphasise the importance of transparency and honesty throughout the mediation process. Encourage parties to openly discuss any hidden agendas, fostering a climate of trust and cooperation.

Neutralising power dynamics:

Address power imbalances by ensuring that all participants feel heard and empowered during the mediation. Use mediation techniques that equalise the communication dynamics and allow for fair participation.

Managing emotional intensity:

Provide tools for managing intense emotions and create opportunities for emotional expression in a controlled environment. Integrate techniques such as active listening and empathy to help parties navigate emotional challenges.

Assuring educational security:

Communicate clearly that the mediation process is focused on resolution and improvement rather than punitive measures. Emphasise the confidentiality of the process and assure participants that their involvement will not negatively impact their education.

Flexibility within constraints:

Work within school policies and legal frameworks while seeking flexibility to tailor the mediation process to the unique needs of the dispute. Collaborate with relevant stakeholders to find creative solutions within any limiting conditions.

Reach out to any of our nationwide DDR centres or on social media to find out more or to book an appointment:


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Mediation in schools is the compass guiding students through the tumultuous waters of bullying. It's a collaborative journey where conflicts become stepping stones to understanding, empathy, and resolution. By empowering students to navigate these challenges, mediation cultivates a culture of respect, transforming negative dynamics into opportunities for growth and unity within the school community.

Want to know more about school and bullying mediation? Download our complimentary eBook on “Bullying: A Guide to Mediating Bullying Disputes” or any of our other eBooks.