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Parent Education Programs

2021 Online Parent Education Programs

Due to the suspension of mandatory court-approved parent education programs in Massachusetts, MWI’s Better Parent program is not currently conducting any new court-approved Parent Education Programs for parents seeking divorce or to establish paternity. For programs prior to August 31, 2021 click here.


Given many divorcing or separating parents find value in learning more about divorce, children, and effective co-parenting tools, MWI now offers a three-hour program as follows:

  • These programs are optional.
  • Parents may participate together or separately.
  • Each program is designed for parents who want to learn more about divorce, co-parenting apart, and how to support children during and after divorce. Time is dedicated to hearing from other parents and to getting answers to questions.
  • Programs meet once, via Zoom, for three hours.
  • The cost of the program is $130 for one parent or $210 for both parents (a $50 discount).
  • Reduced rates are available for this program and for MWI’s mediation services. Please ask.
  • These programs are not being offered under the auspices of Probate and Family Court Standing Order 2-16 or its temporary amendment.

Parent Education Program Schedule

  • Wednesday, September 22, 2021 – 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM via Zoom
  • Friday, October 22, 2021 – 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM via Zoom
  • Tuesday, November 23, 2021 – 10:30 AM to 1:30 PM via Zoom
  • Wednesday, December 15, 2021 – 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM via Zoom

Contact MWI’s Director of Mediation Services, Josh Hoch, at 617-895-4028 or jhoch@mwi.org with questions.


Program Facilitators

  • Josh Hoch
    Josh Hoch
  • Nnena Odim
    Nnena Odim
Josh Hoch

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Mediating Divorce and Family Cases with MWI in Boston and Online
617-895-4028jhoch@mwi.org

Click here for availability, rates, and more information


Josh Hoch is a mediator, instructor, and is Director of Mediation Services at MWI. A mediator since 1996, Josh mediates family, divorce, parenting, child support, never married parents, and housing cases. In addition to his mediation work, Josh is also a member of MWI’s training faculty and leads advanced mediation training programs in areas of divorce, housing/eviction, and advanced dispute resolution skill building. As Director of Mediation Services at MWI, Josh manages mediations and arbitrations in the areas of family law, consumer automotive, real estate, land use, construction, and workplace/employment. Josh also serves as MWI’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) liaison. Additionally, Josh coordinates monthly workshops for parents seeking divorce and serves as a mentor to mediators looking to expand their practice to include divorce mediation. Josh is a member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), and served on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Chapter of AFCC for seven years. Josh has been featured in the Boston Globe and on the award-winning New England newsmagazine television show “Chronicle” where he provided information about marriage, divorce, and the use of divorce and family mediation in Massachusetts.

Click here to schedule a free consultation or mediation session. To read client testimonials, click here.


Focus Areas

Josh frequently mediates the following:

  • Divorce Mediation divorce agreements, court required paperwork, Separation Agreements, and filing for divorce in Massachusetts
  • Impact of COVID-19 on separated or separating families
  • Never married parents – separation, parenting plans, child support, division of assets
  • Physical separation, asset & liability division, and property division
  • Custody disputes
  • Parenting plans
  • Pro se and with counsel present
  • Post-Divorce
  • Adult sibling
  • Adult child(ren) and parent(s) and parent/teen
  • Several cases mediated with various translators
  • High conflict divorce and family cases
  • Cases involving bipolar disorder, substance abuse, and domestic violence
  • Housing and Eviction

Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities

  • World Mediators Alliance on Climate Change Green Pledge (July 2021)
  • Designed and administered the court-approved “Better Parent” Parent Education Program for parents seeking divorce, (2016 – August 2021)
  • Member Spotlight, MA AFCC Newsletter (May 2021)
  • Speaker, New England Association of Conflict Resolution, (April 2021)
  • Designed and supervised a mediation program where divorce and family mediation services were provided at the Norfolk Probate and Family Court, (September 2013 – 2020)
  • Served on the Assistant Judicial Case Manger (AJCM) Transition Working Group for the Chief Justice of the Probate and Family Court, 2019
  • Served on the ADR Education Subcommittee for the Massachusetts Trial Court, 2019
  • Received recognition for outstanding performance and lasting contributions to the MA AFCC Chapter, an organization working to assist families in conflict through education, research and services
  • Served for 7 years on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Chapter of AFCC
  • Member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts
  • Member of the Massachusetts Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts
  • Member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation
  • Organizational Member of the New England Chapter of the Association for Conflict Resolution
  • Appeared on the award winning New England newsmagazine television show “Chronicle” where he provided information about marriage, divorce and the use of divorce and family mediation in MA
  • Featured as a mediator in a Boston Globe article
  • Served as Treasurer for an annual fundraiser for Jimmy Fund Clinic patients and their families helping to raise over $500,000

Lectures and ADR Trainings Conducted

  • Advanced Divorce Mediation Training Instructor, (April 2005 – present)
  • Provide individual mentoring to mediators looking to increase their effectiveness as mediators, (2003 – present)
  • Facilitator, Implicit Bias Workshop, (May 2021)
  • Trainer, Advanced Dispute Resolution Training for Probation Officers of the Probate and Family Court, (March & June 2021)
  • Trainer, Juvenile Mediation Training, 2-day Advanced Mediation Training Program, (March 2021)
  • Presenter, Bringing Mediation Online: Lessons Learned So Far, Massachusetts Council for Family Mediation (February 2021)
  • Trainer, Housing and Eviction Mediation Training for five Massachusetts Community Mediation Centers, (December 2020 – January 2021)
  • Presenter, Mediating Cases Remotely (Online), Roundtable Event, (November 2020)
  • Designed and serves as an instructor for an Advanced Dispute Resolution Training Program for Probation Officers of the Probate and Family Court. (May 2019 – June 2021)
  • Norfolk Probate and Family Court Department, mediation program mentor and supervisor, (2013 – 2020)
  • AFCC’s 54th Annual Conference: Turning the Kaleidoscope of Family Conflict into a Prism of Harmony, Conference Presenter (May 2017)
  • Community Dispute Settlement Center (CDSC), Housing Mediation Trainer, (February 2017)
  • International Academic Institute of Mediation, Conference Presenter, Divorce Mediation in the Courts, (September 2015)
  • Advanced Refresher Mediation Skills Training Program, Presenter, (2015 – 2016)
  • New England Chapter of the Association for Conflict Resolution Biennial Regional Conference, Presenter, “I’m a Trained Mediator, Now What do I Do?”, (June 2015)
  • Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation, Presenter, On-site mediation project in the Norfolk Probate and Family Court Department, (2014)
  • Emerson College, Guest Speaker, (2014 – 2016)
  • New England Law | Boston, Ethical Standards, Presenter, (2005 – 2013)
  • Liaison for Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy Mediation Practicum, (2001 – 2011)
  • A Child’s Voice in Court: How to Get It, How to Interpret It and How to Use It, Panel Speaker, (2008)
  • Coca-Cola Enterprise Inc., Trainer. Trained over 950 employees dispute resolution and communication skills and educated over 1700 employees through briefings, (Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, New York, Vermont), (2004 – 2006)
  • Harvard Law School, Intern Fair, Cambridge, MA, Presenter, (2005)
  • Simmons College Graduate School of Social Work, Guest Lecturer, Parent – Teen Mediation (2004)
  • Boston University Law School, Court Connected ADR, Guest Speaker, (2003 – 2008)
  • Hale and Dorr Legal Services Center, Divorce Mediation Presenter, (2003 – 2004)
  • Newton and Lexington Community Education, Presenter: Divorce Information You Want to Know, (2003 – 2005)
  • Germaine Lawrence, Family Communication Workshop, Facilitator, (2001 – 2005)
  • Southern New England School of Law, Mediation Trainer and Coach (2001 – 2004)
  • Northeastern University, undergraduate class, Guest Speaker, (2001 – 2002)

Background and Education

  • Divorce Mediator, MWI, Boston, MA, 2001 – Present
  • Director of Mediation Services, MWI, Boston, MA, 2001 – Present
  • Divorce Mediator, CLC Inc., Granite Bay, CA, 2004 – Present
  • Court & Divorce Mediator, Cambridge, MA, 2001 – 2012
  • Boston Municipal Court Mediator, Boston, MA, 2004 – 2007
  • Prisoner Disputes Mediator, Middlesex Multi-Door Courthouse, Cambridge, MA, 2003 – 2005
  • District Court Mediator, Middlesex Mediation Program, Lowell, MA, 2000 – 2001
  • Staff Member, Academy of Family Mediators, 2000
  • B.A. University of Massachusetts at Amherst, 1998
  • Mediation Training, L. Wing Mediation Consulting, 1996

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Nnena Odim

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Mediating Divorce & Family Matters with MWI in Jamaica Plain and Boston
617-895-4028 | divorce@mwi.org

Click here for availability, rates, and more information


Dispute Resolution Experience

Nnena Odim is a mediator, trainer, attorney, and consultant. She has been mediating since 1997 and has mediated disputes involving issues such as employment, housing, business, consumer, and specializes in mediating the full range of family/domestic relations (elder care, adoption, care and protection, CHINS, divorce, grandparent visitation, and LGBTQ issues, etc.). Nnena also designed and/or led numerous conflict management trainings for several local and national businesses and agencies, including Coca Cola Enterprises, the Boston Public Schools, and the Massachusetts Housing Authority. In addition to her mediation and conflict resolution training background, Nnena is the Director and Senior Clinical Instructor of the Family/Domestic Violence Law Clinic at The Legal Services Center of Harvard Law School. She provides experiential training to law students as she teaches them how to become effective and ethical attorneys.  Nnena has also worked with the Harvard Mediation Program and Harvard Program on Negotiation to provide trainings for students and various community members and to supervise Harvard Law School students in their mediation and negotiation studies. Nnena has mediated personal, academic, and administrative issues between students and faculty in higher education settings and served as a coach of mediation skills for trainings at MIT, Suffolk and Boston College Law Schools, and New England School of Law. In 2013, Nnena was a Top Women in the Law award recipient from Mass. Lawyers Weekly. In 2015, she received the Harvard Law School Dean’s Award for Excellence.


Focus Areas

  • Worked with over 100 same-sex couples in both mediation and litigation, on a variety of legal scenarios, such as 2nd parent adoptions, divorce (with and without children), paternity, business dissolution, pre- and post-nuptial agreements, and donor agreements for sperm donation
  • Drafted over 100 post-mediation Settlement Agreements and Memoranda of Understanding
  • Guardian ad Litem, appointed by Suffolk and Middlesex County Family and Probate Courts

Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities

  • Top Women in the Law award recipient, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, 2013
  • Member, Association for Conflict Resolution
  • Member, American Bar Association
  • Licensed Real Estate Broker

Lectures and ADR Trainings Conducted

  • Training faculty for MWI’s annual Advanced Divorce Training
  • Guest lecturer for Suffolk and Boston College Law Schools’ mediation courses

Background and Education

  • J.D., Northeastern University School of Law (1997)
  • M.S., University of Massachusetts/Amherst (1991)
  • B.S., University of Pittsburgh (1985)

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Parent Education Program Registration


Location

All classes listed above meet online via Zoom.


 

Learn About Divorce Mediation

MWI offers cost-effective divorce mediation services for parents. Mediation helps parents reach agreement on parenting time (visitation), child support, division of assets, and other topics important each parent. Schedule a free consultation.


For More Information

Contact Josh Hoch at 617-895-4028 with questions or to register over the phone.