The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) has adopted Restorative Justice as the district’s discipline policy. This program focuses on community building, repairing harm, and reintegrating students who have been suspended, truant, or expelled.
Restorative Justice was developed years ago and, as the name implies, was originally developed to help incarcerated people make amends for their misdeeds.
Although the intent of Restorative Justice has many good qualities, the program is a process—considering that LAUSD has planned to implement the program over a three-year period.
I should make my position clear regarding my association with the Los Angeles district. To begin, I have great admiration for large urban school districts. I consulted with the New York Board of Education working with … >>> READ MORE >>> →
Restorative Justice is a discipline program that is gaining support in urban schools across the nation. The reason it is gaining acceptance is that a disproportionate number of minority students are being punished for inappropriate and irresponsible school behaviors—and federal guidelines are attempting to reduce the problem.
Although the approach has good intentions, significant problems have developed because teachers across the country are at their wit’s end to conduct their classes without an increasing number of disruptions. A prime reason is that students are not being held accountable for inappropriate behaviors. Restorative Justice can encourage misbehavior by lavishing attention on students for committing infractions. Where this approach has been tried, it has backfired.
As a high school counselor in an … >>> READ MORE >>> →