- Showing 9 posts filed under: Story [–] published between Sep 01, 2009 and Sep 30, 2009 [Show all]
Healing through victim offender mediation
Back in 2001 a young teenager, whose real name is not David, joined his friend in a robbery. While a family in their neighborhood was away, they broke in and stole a coin collection, an old watch, and other items that David and his friend could fence for cash. The plan went off without a hitch, except that David and his friend were arrested when law officers linked them to the crime. David qualified for a community mediation program between victims and offenders that he agreed to participate in.
Sep 29, 2009 Story
Dignity in schools: an unexcused absence
“A school should not feel like a prison. A school should feel positive, safe and welcoming. A school should feel like a second home. As I walk through the doors of my school, I want to be treated with dignity.” These are the words of Vernard Carter, a rising 10th grade Rethinker at a well-attended press conference held July 23, 2009.
The Rethinkers – or Kids Rethink New Orleans Schools – know how to zero in on the basics. First (in 2007 and 2008) they tackled bathrooms and lunches, with marked success, and now they are addressing safety and dignity. What could be more basic?
In the living room with the lion and the lamb
Karen was sexually abused as a child. Now in her fifties, she sat in the chair across from me and told her story. Decades had passed without resolving the tension adequately with her father. As a grown woman, she was able to instantly lock into her feelings of betrayal from a daddy forever stuck in the past.
Her new friend Wayne sat on the couch to the left listening attentively with somber reflection. He had served time in prison for abusing his own children. He had not seen his own wife or children for a few years. Here was a troubled man wanting to examine his heart to understand why he had failed so horribly.
Can murder ever be forgiven: A restorative justice case study
For Christmas in 1985, Marlon* went to visit his daughter who was living with his ex-wife, her aunt and her four year old cousin, Tanya. Marlon went with the intention of giving both girls a Sindy doll as a Christmas present but the visit resulted in the murder of Tanya's mother in front of her eyes. Sharon Goldstone describes an exceptional restorative meeting in which Tanya and Marlon met for the first time in twenty-four years.
Excellence in Education Award given for restorative practices
from the Milwaukee Public Schools Board Minutes:
Each month, the Milwaukee Board of School Directors recognizes an outstanding school, student, staff member, or parent or community member for a display of excellence, achievement, and innovation that may serve as an example to our school district and the entire Milwaukee community. This month, the Milwaukee Board of School Directors is pleased to present the “Excellence in Education Award” to John Chisholm, Paul Dedinsky, Lovell Johnson, David Lerman and Gary Mahkorn of the Restorative Pracices Program and Milwaukee District Attorney's Office (Safe School/Healthy Students Partner).
'Talking stick' helps facilitate restorative justice response to destructive behaviors
Sawyer family moves forward after devastating loss
When he left home the morning of July 16, 2008, Patrick was just weeks away from completing his degree. It was early, before sunrise, and he was riding his bicycle west on Cleveland Road, headed to the YMCA to swim laps before class at Indiana University South Bend. He was wearing a helmet and reflective vest and riding with traffic, and he had lights on the front and back of his bicycle.
A “proactive” restorative conference
As the meeting progressed, tempers cooled and people began to listen. Ultimately, the kids agreed to the boundaries set by security and the college administrators. Campus security also had a chance to meet the kids and now knows who they are when they do come onto campus. Campus is open to them after all.
Video Review: The Transformation of West Philadelphia High School: A Story of Hope
by Kate Strong
A troubled high school in Philadelphia undergoes a radical turn-around after restorative practices transform the whole climate of the school.
The DVD is the visual equivalent of a newspaper article: there is little ornamentation and even littler excess. The story presented is simple: West Philadelphia High School had been on the "persistently dangerous" list for six years because of the violence and crime that had plagued the school.
Then, as an attempt to thoroughly transform the school from its bones to its behavior, they introduced restorative practices, including conferencing training and circles for dispute resolution. Within the first year, the crime rate was down by 52%. The next year, the crime rate had dropped another 45%.