Master the challenges of adopting restorative practices in schools.
Challenge 1: Debates and resistance to restorative justice rooted in misunderstandings about what it means. We've witnessed many times the frustration that results from arguing about "it" before first coming to a shared understanding of what "it" is. Our solution: The Launch Event, a powerful 6-hour immersion in restorative experiences and principles, leading to shared definition of restorative culture and practices, and why they are important.
Challenge 2: To what, exactly, do we hope to restore students? Let's face it, many schools have evolved climates of chronic low-grade tension, hostility, and anxiety. It makes little sense to restore challenging students to this climate. Our solution: Tier 1 Foundations of Restorative Culture, a three-day training that engages staff in an inquiry about what kind of school community you want to build, and equips you with the tools to build it. Rooted in the core values, concepts, and skills of restorative practices.
Challenge 3: How do we teach our students the principles and vocabulary of restorative justice? When we call students into restorative dialogues and circles, the effort may fail if they don't understand key concepts like how are people affected and making things right. Our solution: We will train your teachers to use the curriculum, "Using Classroom Circles to Teach Restorative Practices," authored by our Director, M. Amos Clifford, for San Francisco Unified School District. To get a free copy of this curriculum, complete the interest form at the bottom of this page.
Challenge 4: How do we do the actual work of facilitating restorative dialogue between those who have done harm, and those who have been harmed? Depending on the severity of the situation, this challenge may be handled quickly by a teacher or it may be a much more involved process involving administrators, safety staff, and community organizations. Our solution: Tier 2 and 3 Facilitating Restorative Dialogue in Schools, a four-day training that will give you the skills you need to confidently facilitate dialogues that help make things right.
Challenge 5: How do we sustain leadership for restorative practices? Skillful and knowledgeable effort by principals and other site leaders is essential. But it is not realistic to expect talented leaders to implement restorative practices without ongoing support. Our solution: mentoring for site leaders.
The day was a powerful and empowering experience that renewed my efforts and gave me useful tools so that I can move forward in creating a more positive, welcoming and healthy learning and working environment for all my students. --Teacher
In the afternoon there were 100 social people in a usually noisy room and you could hear a pin drop.
It was amazing that despite being in a cold multi-purpose room, sitting in uncomfortable folding chairs, with poor acoustics, everyone was focused and participating. I wish that we could have that training at each school site. --Principal
I loved the positive energy that filled the room at the end of the day. --Teacher
I loved the chance to think about how various situations affect different stakeholders in different ways--the really extended reach that some situations have on the outcomes for kids. --Community Based Organization Staff
I felt the day was refreshing to see individuals and professionals from various backgrounds coming together as one to improve and impact the community they serve. --Elementary Principal
Building relationships with other adults is the first step in growing restorative practices as a district. The day was moving and inspirational and could serve as a retreat model for staffs throughout the district. --Elementary Principal