What is Restorative Justice? [Discipline Updates, Part One]

  • Student Life
Cameron Crain

“Restorative Justice seeks to answer the question, how do we create the space for accountability and simultaneously build relationships?”

--National Center for Restorative Justice

Part I – Discipline Policy Updates

Earlier this year we announced updates to our discipline policy. Our overall discipline philosophy is one of course correction rather punishment. Conflict happens. It is part of the human experience to battle with internal and external conflict. We know that we have amazing students at our school. And part of what makes us amazing is that we model how to resolve conflict. One instrument that we are using to help with this is Restorative Justice.

US Students

So, what is Restorative Justice?

Restorative Justice serves the whole school community by focusing on agreement, accountability, and mediation. Restorative justice helps repair damage caused during interpersonal and group conflict. Offenders must accept responsibility for harm and make restitution with victims. Part of accountability is embracing natural consequences for infractions. Sage Ridge embraces the use of these principles because they align with our Pillars. The Head of Student Life leads this work with grade level team leaders, advisors, faculty, and students as needed. Depending on the violation committed, consequences might include apologies, detentions, suspensions, and behavior contracts.

Repairs take time. Sometimes we may not see the results as fast as we would like. But we need to remember that in most cases the conflict has been brewing for an extended period of time, and we need to give our students time to adopt new skills and healthy habits.

For more information on restorative justice, visit the National Center for Restorative Justice.

This is the first in a three part series about the changes in the Sage Ridge Discipline Policy for 2019 – 2020.

  • discipline
  • restorative justice
  • student life

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