Restorative Practice is an alternative to punitive practices where taking responsibility and putting the harm right are at the heart of the process.
Restorative Practice allows for the building and maintaining of relationships when things go wrong, with a ‘plan’ ensuring the behaviour stops, rather than blaming and punishing the ‘wrong-doer’. Restorative Practice focuses on accountability, healing and the needs of the parties involved.
The process consists of:
Tell the story
Tell me your story.
What was happening when you became involved?
What were you thinking about when you did that?
Explore the harm
Who do you think has been affected? In what ways?
Who else may have been affected by your behaviour?
What do you think it must have been like for them?
Repair the harm
What needs to happen to put things right again?
What do you think ––––––––––––––––––– needs to hear from you right now?
Is there anything else you can think of that might help?
Reach an agreement
If this happens again, what will you do differently?
What do you need from me/us to support you?
What will the plan for the future include?
If this happens again, what will we do about it?
When would be a good time to check in with you and see how you are going?
What will happen if our agreed outcomes have not been reached?
This process is facilitated by trained staff with the learners where repairing the harm is central.
Why Use a Restorative Approach to Behaviour?
In any community there will be conflict, hurt and disappointment at times
Restorative Practice teaches our students (and us) important skills to manage conflict, such as active listening, ability to express emotion/feelings, problem solving skills and the ability to take responsibility for our actions
It puts the onus on the “wrongdoer” to make things right
It teaches the importance of mending relationships
Restorative Practice expects high standards of behaviour and at the same time provides the support needed for students/staff to meet these expectations