Peer Mentor Program

WHAT IS THE PEER MENTOR PROGRAM?

The purpose of the Peer Mentor program is to provide support for 9th graders and transfer students in their transition to the high school.  The peer mentors are juniors and seniors who have shown an interest in and capacity for helping others. The program has been up and running at Wayland High School for over fifteen years.

WHAT EXACTLY DO PEER MENTORS DO?

First up, Peer Mentors will be responsible for leading campus tours for the incoming ninth graders (one in June at the very end of this school year, and the other in late August the day before school begins). Then each Peer Mentor will be assigned to a Freshman Seminar, which begin in September and run through the first semester. These seminars meet once during each eight-day cycle, are led by a guidance counselor, and have 12 - 18 students each. Peer Mentors will help to give the student perspective of what we cover in the freshman seminars and will receive official credit on their transcripts for their efforts. The curriculum addresses the major issues of transition and adjustment to the high school and the "tasks" of adolescence. In addition, the seminars focus on academic requirements, expectations, and the realities of the high school program.  Time management, stress management, and setting priorities are also addressed. Discussions also focus on resources in the high school and how to access them - from academic assistance from teachers, the Academic Center, to accessing social-emotional support.


New to the program for the 2019-20 school year: Instead, starting next year we will be combining our Freshman Seminar program and freshman Information Literacy classes and extending it through the entire first semester. The majority of the first quarter sessions will be dedicated to the typical transition work (helping kids get acclimated to the school, learn about the A-H rotation, bell schedule, etc.), and these are the sessions where mentors will be co-leading with the guidance counselor. Once those initial Q1 sessions conclude, the class will then switch gears and focus on a revamped and consolidated information literacy curriculum for the remainder of Q2. Mentors will remain in that class for the entire second quarter to help facilitate instruction.

Peer Mentors will also assist guidance counselors and be available outside of seminars to connect with their mentees as well.  Some peer mentors provide tutoring, others interact around shared interests and activities, and some may talk during free periods, by phone, email, text or Facebook. Some important requirements of the program are outlined below:

  • ++Peer mentors will be required to participate in Step Over Day in June and Connections Day (9th Grade Orientation) in late August (exact dates TBD).
  • ++Peer mentors will be required to complete reflection journal entries once per cycle for the first semester. These will not be graded, but instead are a reflection exercise intended to benefit the student in their growth as a mentor..
  • ++Peer mentors will be scheduled into 9th grade seminars and will receive 1 academic credit on their transcripts.  Attendance is mandatory.
  • ++This is a semester long elective that meets 1x/cycle.
  • ++Peer Mentors will also be asked to accompany counselors on our yearly middle school visit (usually on a Thursday in March) where we discuss the upcoming transition to high school with the 8th graders.

WHO CAN I TALK WITH TO GET MORE INFORMATION ON THE PEER MENTOR PROGRAM?

The Peer Mentor Program is run by Mrs. Sullivan, School Adjustment Counselor, and Mr. Buffa, Guidance Counselor. You can talk with either of them, or e-mail them by clicking on their names above. Mrs. Sullivan and Mr. Buffa can also be reached in the Guidance Office at 508-358-3706. They are eager to talk with you about this terrific program!

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