Restoring Community

These articles were formerly posted on our Restorative Works website.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers photo by Carol E. Davis, Flickr Creative CommonsU.S. Army Corps of Engineers photo by Carol E. Davis, Flickr Creative Commons

Last year, during a shared bus ride, two teens from a Buxmont Academy school upset a group of first- and second-grade Catholic school students by telling them there was no Santa Claus.

Since Buxmont is an IIRP model program that employs restorative practices, when the principal of the Catholic school called to report the event, Buxmont staff suggested a circle to hold the teens accountable and give them the chance to apologize.

Buxmont counselor Jean Scott took the two boys who made the offending comments to the Catholic school to conduct the circle, along with two other youth to serve as friends and emotional support for the boys. They met with the principal first.

CoRRListen to the second episode of Restorative Conversations, a new podcast by the Community of Restorative Researchers (CoRR).

Ian Marder, founder of CoRR, interviews Andrew Hancock, Restorative Justice Coordinator for Darlington, UK (North East England), and Stephen Twist, a barrister and restorative practitioner in Darlington. They talk about the growth of restorative justice in Darlington in recent years, the development of the Darlington Restorative Justice Hub (formerly Darlington Neighbourhood Resolution), the recruitment, training and supervision of volunteer facilitators and the differences between practicing law and practicing restorative justice.

From Dream to Reality: Dawning of a New Social Science

June 10-12, 2015 | Budapest, Hungary

John W. Bailie, Ph.D., Inauguration Speech as Second President
of the International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) Graduate School,
October 23, 2015, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

Introduction

(r-l) Dr. John Bailie, 2nd IIRP President, William Ballantine, IIRP Board of Trustees Chair and IIRP Founder Ted Wachtel.(r-l) Dr. John Bailie, 2nd IIRP President, William Ballantine, IIRP Board of Trustees Chair, and IIRP Founder Ted Wachtel.

Many years ago, speaking as one of the first graduates of the IIRP graduate program, I stated that every generation of humanity faces a few clear and undeniable challenges. One central challenge for this generation is a crisis of community and relationships. More than any other time in history, we will live, communicate and relate to an incredible diversity of people. Global physical mobility, as well as social unrest and international conflict, make this a certainty for many decades to come. These realities challenge old social formations, ideas and norms.

CoRRListen to the first episode of Restorative Conversations, a new podcast by the Community of Restorative Researchers (CoRR).

Ian Marder, founder of CoRR, interviews Dr. John Bailie and Ted Wachtel, the current and former presidents of the International Institute for Restorative Practices Graduate School during their recent visit to Kortrik, Belgium.

Topics covered during the discussion include Bailie and Wachtel's backgrounds, the work of the IIRP in training and implementing restorative practice in schools, universities and criminal justice, and the future of restorative practice as a social movement and a new social science.

As the number of stories about restorative practices in the news grows daily, we are limiting the number of items in this roundup, featuring the most significant highlights, in order to make it more accessible.

For a more comprehensive news feed, please follow @iirpgradschool on twitter, and note that you do not need to join twitter in order to read our daily posts there.

Heidi FisherLanguage Arts teacher Heidi Fisher employs the Restorative Questions in circle discussions, encouraging students to relate to their reading assignments.

Heidi began implementing restorative practices in her classroom at Indian River Middle School, in Canaan, New Hampshire, the day she returned from an IIRP Basic Restorative Practices event, in Bethlehem, PA.

Her students had behaved poorly with the substitute teacher while she was away, so she decided to try the Restorative Questions to address the issue. “It was incredible just to listen to their responses to the questions,” notes Heidi. “They all acknowledged that they should have behaved better, and they apologized to the substitute.”

San Francisco ArchdioceseParticipants in the San Francisco Archdiocese Restorative Justice Ministry's homicide survivors assistance and support retreat (Photo by Christina Gray/Catholic San Francisco)

The Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco Restorative Justice Ministry recently hosted a retreat for nearly 40 survivors of homicide and representatives of organizations that support them. The retreat included Restorative Responses to Adversity and Trauma, a professional development event conducted by the International Institute for Restorative Practices. The event gave participants a deeper understanding of their own trauma and loss as well as skills to help themselves and others cope with similar experiences.

“The most amazing thing was getting people to the leadership moment, where they can actually begin to see their healing on a higher and deeper level, as well as some restoration as a step in their healing process,” affirms Julio Escobar, director of the Restorative Justice Ministry. “We wanted to introduce the concept of restorative justice and restorative practices from an accredited organization like the IIRP,” he explains.

Schools

The American Federation of Teachers — one of the nation’s largest unions — takes on the issue of racial justice using restorative practices.

Daniel Losen, director of Center for Civil Rights Remedies at the University of California, Los Angeles, discusses "Practices that create accountable and restorative discipline" during an in-depth multi-part interview with Engaging Schools.

Rhonda Richetta, principal of City Springs Elementary/Middle School, in Baltimore, Maryland, talks to SaferSanerSchools Instructor Steve Korr about the many ways restorative practices has benefited her school and life and tells some great stories.

 

symposium participants“Good riddance to zero tolerance!” declared IIRP president John Bailie, Ph.D., opening the IIRP Symposium: Integrating School Climate Reform Efforts. At that, about 150 educators from across North America — superintendents, school climate and safety administrators, teachers, counselors and psychologists — cheered their approval.

They had come, along with a panel of six school climate reform leaders, to Bethlehem, PA, July 20-21, 2015, to explore how the wide array of programs created to replace zero tolerance could work together.