Restoration over criminalizationLeave a Comment
Today we released a follow up to our community brief on school climate from last year about restorative practices in Pittsburgh Public Schools. In it, we discuss our findings from a survey and focus groups we conducted this past spring with parents and students in schools that are participating in a Department of Justice study into the impact restorative practices can have on improving school climates.
While there is still much to learn about the efficacy of restorative practices in schools, it is a practice that is showing some promise locally and nationally. We would urge the school board to:
1. Commit to implementing restorative practices in all schools by 2020, recognizing that students, staff, and parents will need to time to learn about and engage in using restorative practices within each school .
2. Commit to provide ongoing support and training to all staff on restorative practices, and other social emotional behavioral supports .
3. Stabilize principal leadership at schools by supporting building leaders to be effective and providing services and supports from central office that meet the unique demands of each school.
We recognize that one size does not fit all when it comes to building school cultures that work for children. Implementing restorative practices in a manner that meets the needs of students, parents, and educators will be important to building long-term cultural change at each school. We hope PPS will continue to build upon what it has learned in the study to create school climates that seek to repair and avoid harm.