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Mediator Program

Cultural and communication gaps between Ethiopian Israeli parents and the educational system delay significant processes in the social and educational integration of Ethiopian Israelis. The embedding of mediators within schools has changed the way in which the Israeli school system relates to Ethiopian Israeli students and their families. The support, representation and mediation provided by these professionals has strengthened the ability of Ethiopian Israeli families to effectively present their needs and has sensitized the school system to accept and attempt to meet these needs.
 
Fidel's Educational and Social Mediator program aims to create integration between children, parents and the school system in order to enable children to achieve their scholastic and social potential. Fidel mediators work on a number of levels: helping students with difficulties in their studies and socially in schools, increasing the involvement of parents in the educational process, creating initiatives to familiarize others with the culture and traditions of the Ethiopian Israeli community. Mediators function as role models for the children, their parents and school staff: they themselves have successfully integrated into society, have achieved academic training and have attained good jobs. Fidel's social and educational mediation program has served as a catalyst for positive change within the educational system since its establishment in 1998. Until the present, Fidel mediators have helped approximately 17,000 pupils in 21 cities. The combined hidden and actual dropout rate in schools operating the program has dropped by 95%, academic achievements have improved, parents are active in the educational process, and the number of youth achieving matriculation has increased significantly.
 
Goals
  • Increase motivation and higher academic achievement of students 
  • Dramatically reduce both "hidden" (truancy & vagrancy) and actual dropout rate
  • Improve social integration of Ethiopian Israeli students
  • Identify high achieving students and encourage them to develop their potential
  • Identify students with difficulties and ensure that they receive the necessary attention and assistance
  • Children participate in social frameworks such as student council, youth movements, after school programs
  • Increase parental involvement in children's education, school meetings, parent committees
 
The Mediator Program is funded by the Ethiopian National Project, municipalities and foundations.
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