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Our middle school has had a successful program for the last six years. As the coordinator, I am funded for ten hours each week to recruit, train, and organize the students. I recommend that you use 4-8 student leaders per grade level and have the mentor teams sign a contract which spells out their duties and responsiblities.
Poulsbo Middle School is in Washington State
Dave - You might check out Fountain Hills Middle School in Arizona: http://www.ms.fountainhillsschools.org/. They have a program from middle school students to the elementary echool students. Several years ago it was high schoolers mentoring middle schoolers who in turn mentored elementary students. It was based on a program called "Generations," that was developed by a teacher there. Not sure if the Generations program it's still around, but I believe they still highly promote mentoring and may be a good resource for you.
I am currently setting up a high school to middle school student mentoring project and was wondering if you knew of any organizations that have similar programs. Thank you for your time.
We also have students mentor new staff. Who know the school better? It's a powerful shift of power that benefits everyone.