Restoring Community

***September 11, 2017: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***

IIRP World Conference to Explore
the Future of Learning in the 21st Century

The International Institute for Restorative Practices Graduate School presents:
Learning in the 21st Century: A Restorative Vision, its 23rd World Conference
October 23-25, 2017
Hotel Bethlehem and IIRP Campus, Bethlehem, PA.

The conference convenes a diverse community of education practitioners, scholars and advocates working together to strengthen civil society. Throughout the three days we will explore how to build supportive school communities.

According to IIRP President, John Bailie, Ph.D, "The conference will explore cutting-edge pedagogy, community development and how insights into social and emotional development will change how children and adults learn in the 21st Century."

Presenters will tackle educational equity, addressing the inclusion of children of different races, immigration status and special needs, as well as how trauma-informed care is helping youth in distress. We will explore how technologies like online and blended learning are impacting school climate and academic achievement. And we will hear preliminary findings from a large randomized-controlled trial of restorative practices in Pittsburgh Public Schools.

100+ presenters include:

  • Pamela Randall-Garner, Ed.D., of the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), Chicago
  • Joie Acosta, Ph.D., RAND Corporation, Arlington, VA
  • Mica Pollock, Ph.D., University of California, San Diego, Center for Research on Educational Equity, Assessment, and Teaching Excellence
  • Rodney Necciai, Ed.D. & Christine Cray, Pittsburgh Public Schools
  • Heather Dalmage, Ph.D., Mansfield Institute for Social Justice and Transformation, Chicago
  • Ethan Fields, M.S. Ed., Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA
  • George Sirrakos, Jr., Ph.D., Kutztown University, PA
  • Tommy Ramirez, MAAC Community Charter School, Chula Vista, CA
  • Rick Phillips, Community Matters, Santa Rosa, CA

Learn more at: pa2017.iirp.edu

The IIRP Graduate School teaches students to lead by empowering others. Students develop an international network of professionals who share their commitment to positively influencing human behavior and civil society. The IIRP offers a Master of Science and Graduate Certificate in Restorative Practices to professionals in education, social services, criminal justice and administration. Restorative practices studies how to restore and develop social capital, social discipline, emotional well-being and civic engagement through participatory learning and decision-making.

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***August 9, 2017 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***

IIRP Graduate School Awards First Shawn Szuch Scholarships, Supporting Innovative, Aspirational Students

Melissa Ash crop copyMelissa AshClaire Fall16 LR 1cropped CropClaire SinclairClaire Sinclair, a kindergarten teacher in Maplewood, N.J., and Melissa Ash, of Easton, Pa., an outreach educator at Lehigh Valley Crime Victims Council, have been awarded the first annual Shawn Szuch Scholarships by the International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) Graduate School.

Claire employs restorative practices in her kindergarten class to enable the children to get to know each other and build empathy, holding "circles" twice daily.

"When we expose younger children to restorative practices we can help them become compassionate human beings," she explains. "It is my hope that these children can use what they learn as they grow up into benevolent individuals, creating an empathetic and caring society." She has also shared restorative practices with others in her school. Most of the teachers are now using circles in their classrooms to build community and relationships.

Melissa runs workshops in middle and high schools to help students understand violence, harassment and bullying and identify some of the signs to prevent such occurrences from happening. Her goal is to help students maintain physical and emotional safety.

The teens in Melissa's classes become very engaged in discussions on topics like dating violence and cyberbullying. "I love working with adolescents," she affirms. "Restorative practices has enabled me to really learn from the kids. I always thought I listened well, but I realized I had been making a lot of assumptions about what the kids thought. Now I allow the class to actually have a discussion. They really get behind their opinions, and they get to know each other better."

The Shawn Szuch Scholarship is awarded to a candidate pursing a Master of Science in Restorative Practices. The scholarships are in memory of Shawn Szuch, a young man who overcame adversity with courage and determination and gave his life for his country.

The International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) Graduate School teaches students to build relationships, resolve conflict constructively and lead by empowering others. During their studies, they are able to develop an international network of professionals who share their commitment to positively influencing human behavior and civil society. Through hybrid and online courses, the IIRP offers a Master of Science and Graduate Certificate in Restorative Practices to professionals in education, criminal justice, social services, workplace management and other fields.

Restorative practices is an emerging social science that studies how to restore and develop social capital, social discipline, emotional well-being and civic engagement through participatory learning and decision-making.

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***July 6, 2017 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***

IIRP Symposium to Explore Concrete Techniques and Alternative Approaches for Transforming Trauma

Led by Dr. Frida Rundell, IIRP associate professor and educational psychologist with over 30 years of experience working with at-risk youth and families, the symposium will provide a blend of theory, academic research and practical knowledge for developing healthy habits, pathways to healing and self-care.