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Reassesing the School Climate

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Information about Reassesing the School Climate
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Published on October 9, 2008

Author: aSGuest610

Source: authorstream.com

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Reassessing School Climate : Reassessing School Climate Restorative Justice and School Discipline What is restorative justice? : What is restorative justice? “Restorative justice is a process to involve, to the extent possible, those who have a stake in a specific offense and to collectively identify and address harms, needs, and obligations, in order to heal and put things as right as possible.” Howard Zehr, The Little Book of Restorative Justice What is Restorative Justice? : What is Restorative Justice? Relationship focus: shift from offender to victim Inclusive: victim, offender, community Recognizes harm done to to all by an offense not only the “state” Traditional Discipline : Traditional Discipline Based on a system of punishment and reward Not typically used as a teaching tool Makes the school culture adversarial Tends to support labeling of students: bad and good kids Bandage approach with few lasting effects Victims get little from the process Restorative Discipline : Restorative Discipline Cooperative, supports community building, culture of mutual respect Focus is on the behavior as a bad choice, not the student as a bad person Restorative measures used as primary, traditional still available as last resort Gives misbehavior a context, the students see how their actions affect others Reduces the amount of time spent on disciplinary action because the root of the problem is dealt with** Slide 6: Traditional Discipline Misbehavior is a violation of the rules and authority. Violations create guilt. Justice requires school authority to determine blame (guilt) and impose pain (punishment). Central focus: those who misbehave get what they deserve. Restorative Discipline Misbehavior is a violation of people and relationships. Violations create obligations. Justice involves victims, offenders, and community members in efforts to put things right. Central focus: victim needs and offender responsibility for repairing harm. Slide 7: Traditional Discipline What rules have been broken? Who did it? What do they deserve? Restorative Discipline Who has been hurt? What are their needs? Whose obligation are these? You’re Already Doing It! : You’re Already Doing It! Mentoring programs Peer mediation “Democratizing” school Morning meetings/talking circles Alternatives to suspension Bringing students (victims/offenders) together NCLB Title IV A: Safe and Drug Free Schools : NCLB Title IV A: Safe and Drug Free Schools "The purpose of this Federal grant is to support programs that prevent violence in and around schools; that prevent the illegal use of alcohol, tobacco, and drugs; that involve parents and communities; and that are coordinated with related Federal, State, school, and community efforts and resources to foster a safe and drug-free learning environment that supports student academic achievement, through the provision of Federal assistance . . ." How much time and money will it take? : How much time and money will it take? ►Dependent on your resources and what in particular you plan to implement. ►Long term commitment is ideal. ► There is a significant support system to call upon for this work. Is There Funding? : Is There Funding? NCLB Title IV A Juvenile Justice Advisory Group Existing professional development Department of Education Local youth-serving organizations can act as partners Communities for Children/Children’s Cabinet How Do We Do It? : How Do We Do It? Raise awareness among teachers about how they deal with conflict in the classroom. Survey the current student handbook and code of conduct information and incorporate restorative measures. Anything that engages students and staff in discussion and problem solving around conflict will be a step in the right direction! Where do we start? : Where do we start? Assess and collaboratively rework the discipline system Incorporate conflict resolution into classroom activities Create a peer mediation program Create a curriculum addressing conflict and the ways to deal with it Use talking circles in the classroom Make connections with local CRTs for more severe cases Model Programs : Model Programs Raisin City School, CA State of Minnesota Colorado Schools Vermont Department of Corrections International Institute for Restorative Practices - SaferSanerSchools/Real Justice Programs Educators For Social Responsibility - Resolving Conflict Creatively Program * See handouts for more details and contact information Resources in Maine : Resources in Maine Maine DOC Victim Services – CRTs University of Maine – Peace Studies Dept. Maine Council of Churches Criminal Justice Program Community Mediation Services/Center and Penquis CAP Maine Association of Dispute Resolution Professionals University of Southern Maine Maine Department of Education Beginnings… : Beginnings… Restorative discipline can be infused gradually into the existing structure Many schools are already employing some restorative measures Again, anything that opens dialogue and strengthens relationships moves toward restorative discipline Slide 17: If we are to reach real peace in this world we shall have to begin with the children. - Mahatma Gandhi School Climate at Oxford Hills : School Climate at Oxford Hills Patrick Hartnett Assistant Principal--OHCHS phartnett@sad17.k12.me.us Initial Phase : Initial Phase Compiling Suspension Numbers Examination of Office Referrals RJ Grant Application Summer of 2001 Use of Alternate Consequences Days Lost to Suspension : Days Lost to Suspension Days Lost to Suspension (September-March) : Days Lost to Suspension (September-March) Restorative Justice : Restorative Justice Developing alternatives to traditional consequences Requiring students to attend Saturday detentions Developing community service oriented projects Processing good decision making skills Victim/Offender Mediation encouraging and providing time for reflection Re-Entry for Expulsions : Re-Entry for Expulsions Five key components Community service Completion of required academic assignments Counseling Meetings with RJ Coordinator Reflection piece that encourages thought After School Ethics : After School Ethics Creates and re-enforces a common vocabulary Aides in the further development of sound decision making skills Provides a practical formula for making better choices

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