IIRP receives grant to improve climate in Philadelphia schools
From the article on the Restorative Works Learning Network:
The International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) Graduate School has received a multi-year grant from The Philadelphia Foundation’s Fund for Children to implement restorative practices in 10 Philadelphia School District high schools and middle schools.
The IIRP’s SaferSanerSchools Whole-School Change Program will help the schools build relationships between students, staff and parents; create a sense of community; improve student behavior; reduce violence and bullying and establish school climates conducive to learning. Rather than just reacting to incidents after they occur, the program implements proactive techniques that foster relationships and a sense of belonging.
Fairfax program focuses on justice and discipline
from the article by Susan R. Paisner in the Fairfax Times.com:
Restorative justice could be considered a first cousin once removed of the modern-day interpretation of the Hippocratic oath: First, do no harm.
For restorative justice focuses on repairing harm that has been done – and preventing future harm.
School hopes talking it out keeps kids from dropping out
from the article by Jennifer Guerra on Capital Public Radio:
Out-of-school suspensions are on the rise across the country, a troubling statistic when you consider being suspended just once ups a student's chances of dropping out entirely. That's why many districts are hoping to keep kids in school by trying an alternative to suspension.
The "conflict resolution room" at Ypsilanti High School in Michigan is quiet and sparse — just a small couch, some chairs and a plant. For decoration there are a few homemade posters with drawings of shooting stars and signs with slogans like "Together we can!" and "Think before you speak."
It's where students go when they're on the verge of being suspended.
‘Restorative justice’ brings closure to Hopkins High School racial insensitivity dispute
From the article in the Golden Valley Patch:
Prosecutors have dropped misdemeanor charges against two Hopkins High School students who protested alleged racial insensitivity at the school, and the district has overturned the students’ suspensions, according to a joint statement from the school district and the students' attorney.
The actions follow a “restorative justice” process initiated to bring closure to a February confrontation between black students and school officials that led to a student walkout in May.
Limits of school-based restorative justice in reducing school suspension
....As I have chronicled in some previous posts, Restorative Practices/School-Based Restorative Justice is being taken more and more seriously as a way to reduce the harmful effects of school suspension.
Certainly, when students are being suspended for the relatively minor infractions that compose a great fraction of the reasons for suspension, at least in the Detroit data–verbal abuse, talking back, violations of dress code, possibly even substance abuse–suspension makes no sense, and teaching students to be respectful of others by promoting affective communication and empathy makes perfect sense. Even serious violations of student behavior that do not pose a grave physical danger to others may be perfect candidates for school-based restorative practices.
Call for more restorative justice plans
A restorative programme to help develop conflict resolution skills in west Tallaght in Dublin should be rolled out to all schools in Ireland, former governor of Mountjoy Prison John Lonergan has said.
At the launch of a report evaluating the Restorative Practice Programme of the Childhood Development Initiative, Mr Lonergan said inter-community relationships “are at the very heart of the quality of life that people have”.
LAUSD drops “willful defiance” suspensions for “restorative justice” approach
The Los Angeles Unified School District voted Tuesday to ban suspensions for “willful defiance,” a major shift from the previously instituted zero tolerance policy.
In a 5 to 2 vote, the board adopted the 2013 School Discipline Policy and School Climate Bill of Rights proposed by LAUSD board President Monica Garcia.
Fresno Unified approves restorative justice program
from the article by Linda Mumma for ABC30:
After three years of working with the district -- members of the youth advocacy group "Students United to Create A Climate of Engagement, Support and Safety" -- got the outcome they were looking for.
Fresno Unified School Board Member Carol Mills said, "This board hereby adopts this resolution to create and implement a school discipline framework of restorative practices."
Defusing conflict in schools
from the photo essay by Jim Wilson in the New York Times:
Mr. Butler passed a “talking stone” to a student during a circle, indicating that the student had the floor.
Detroit students restore peace by talking it out
It all started with Twitter.
Weekend tweets and re-tweets among two girls and their friends. She says she wants to fight her, he tweets it to others, word goes around. Come Monday, the threatened girl stays home from school.
By Wednesday, four of them sit around a cafeteria table in a charter academy in Detroit, facing each other. Talking, not fighting is the way things are worked out here.