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    In his latest post, the IIRP's second president, John W. Bailie, Ph.D. challenges educators to remember that the power of restorative practices for school climate change rests in providing both support and discipline, love and limits.

  • In this 20-minute video, staff, students and administrators at Carbondale Middle School, Carbondale, Illinois, share the restorative approach they are taking to improving school climate.

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    In the "President's Blog," the IIRP's second president, John W. Bailie, Ph.D., shares his thoughts on a variety of topics relevant to leadership, social innovation and education. In this piece, Dr. Bailie offers some advice for teachers and administrators implementing restorative practices in schools.

  • Jeff-Sprague-Jane-Riese.pngThe International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) Graduate School has encouraged national leaders to collaborate to improve school climate in schools. Pilot projects and research studies have begun to examine the effectiveness of initiatives to integrate an array of programs. The first article in this series looks at a National Institutes of Justice-funded research study on the implementation of Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports (PBIS) with Olweus Bullying Prevention Program (OBPP).


  • Rick PhillipsIn this guest post, Rick Phillips, Founder and Executive Director of Community Matters, talks about the importance of getting the support of parents and families when instituting restorative practices using a wide range of communication channels. This article originally appeared on the Community Matters web page.

    The successful implementation of restorative practices requires the involvement and commitment of the entire school-community. Stakeholders include district and site administrators, both classified and non-classified staff, students, families and youth-serving community partners.

    However, many educators do not engage families as stakeholders when introducing their restorative practices initiatives and plans. Since restorative practices is not a program or a


  • RP meets social justice coverIn his foreword to a new book, Restorative Practice Meets Social Justice: Un-silencing the Voices of “At-Promise” Student Populations (Normore & Lahera, 2017), the IIRP's second president, John W. Bailie, Ph.D., argues that we need to restorethe alignment of education philosophy and practice to a basic human blueprint for how we're hardwired to connect.

  • In the past few years, we have seen the inequitable, negative impact of zero-tolerance policies on African American boys, in particular. These policies, however, have had a similarly harmful impact on African American girls.

    In September, Monique Morris, Ed.D., author of Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools (The New Press, 2016), participated in the White House Rethink Discipline conference. In October, Dr. Morris presented at Restoring Community: 21st IIRP World Conference in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

    Dr. Morris, who has been a scholar and social justice activist for over two decades, discussed the experience of African American girls in schools.

  • Brave New Films presents this short, animated film, which explains how restorative justice holds offenders accountable in ways that punitive criminal justice does not. Director of Common Justice Danielle Sered provided the narration.

  • Through the IIRP’s SaferSanerSchools Whole-School Change program, IIRP Lecturer and Instructor Mary Jo Hebling is helping hundreds of schools across the U.S. — urban to rural — including those in Detroit, Philadelphia, Newark, N.J., and Baltimore — implement restorative practices. In this video, she emphasizes that engaging students and parents in training and implementation makes a huge difference in improving school climate.

  • IIRP Director of Continuing Education Keith Hickman participated in a panel, Restorative Justice Now, at the Citizen University National Conference: WHO IS US? Race, Citizenship, and America Now, March 18-19, 2016. The discussion revolves around reducing suspensions and discipline disparities for students of color in schools. Hickman widens the context by pointing out how restorative practices build social capital through participatory learning and decision-making for staff and students. These practices hold the potential to transcend school and isolated programs to affect the wider community.

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    The children at Buxmont Academy Elementary at Pottstown, in Pennsylvania, are working hard to overcome an array of learning and life difficulties.

    “The children come to us with a range of challenges,” explains Erin Keller, the school’s coordinator, who earned her master's degree at the IIRP in 2015. Social and emotional learning is crucial to enable the students — in grades one through six — to move forward.

  • blue valley schoolStudents from diverse backgrounds are learning to get along by participating in circles at the Blue Valley School in San José, Costa Rica, a small, private preparatory school for children from pre-kindergarten to 12th grade.

    “We want students to be responsible not only for their own behavior, but to deal with social issues without parental intervention,” says Irene Ortega, head guidance counselor. “Parents often try and solve problems for their children,” she notes. “We want students to be empowered to solve their own conflicts,” and restorative practices has been a great tool for that.

  • This video demonstrates the four quadrants of the Social Discipline Window in a humorous way. It was made by our friends at LCCS (Lutheran Community Care Services) in Singapore to teach a basic restorative practices concept and presented at the IIRP's 19th World Conference in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

  • Marcus Jones, Ed.D“They used to call me ‘Send ’Em Home Jones,’” admits Texas principal Marcus Jones, Ed.D.

    Last year, one boy was suspended four or five times. “He always had an issue and never took responsibility for what he did,” Jones explains.

    Student misbehavior interfered with learning, and staff dreaded coming to work, at Manor Independent School District’s DAEP (Disciplinary Alternative Education Program) public school, near Austin, Texas, USA.

  • students from el salvadorChildren are transforming conflict with circle processes in nonprofit Glasswing International's after-school clubs. Trained by IIRP Latinoamérica, Glasswing is also averting suspensions and involving wider communities in El Salvador's schools. Teaching ways to build relationships and community, they hope to prevent the kind of violence and conflict that has plagued Central America for generations.

    Glasswing will present their work at the IIRP Latinoamérica Conference this June. They’re receiving support for their presentation through a scholarship from Strachan Foundation in Costa Rica and the IIRP’s Restorative Practices Foundation.

  • girls in a circle With funding from the National Institute of Child Health and Development, researchers from RAND Corporation are conducting a randomized controlled trial of restorative practices in 14 schools in Maine. With this five-year project, which began in school year 2014-15, seven schools are implementing the practices, and seven comparable schools are not.

  • Parent/child "Virtue Night"Parent/child "Virtue Night"

    As director of school climate in the Archdiocese of St. Louis, Lynne Lang is committed to blending restorative work with the mission of the church.

    “The Old Testament reveals in the creation story that God never intended for us to be alone. We are wired to live in community,” says Lang. “What better way to live that message than by working on continuous improvement in the quality of those relationships at every level in our lives?”

  • 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.”

  • 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.

  • “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.