Healing News

Building Community One HAAT at a Time by Jenny Escobar

Restorative Justice Monthly Newsletter: December 2015

Over the last month, HAAT students, staff and teachers have been busy wrapping up the semester. Here are some highlights of Restorative Justice Practices in December:

Community Building Circle with 12th grade advisory teachers

Harm and Conflict Circle with 4 students and 3 adults

Restorative Conversations with parents and students

Community Building and Holiday Celebrations:

Family Science Night: Ms. Fuentes & Ms. Chavez

Photo club: Ms Yugovich

Senior college applications: Ms. Lona

Running Club: Ms. Benedict

Hero or Villain Presentations: Ms. Ng

and many Holiday celebrations.

Harm and Conflict Circles at HAAT

While the school is working on a plan to implement Harm and Conflict circles as part of the school discipline strategy, here is some information on the objectives/intentions of the practice:

What is a Restorative Justice response to discipline?

Traditional discipline focuses on
  • Who broke the rule?
  • What rule was broken?
  • What punishment does the offender deserve?
  • The person harmed (victim) is not considered
  • Rules, fault and punishment are key

Restorative Discipline focuses on

  • Who was involved and how?
  • Which relationships have been harmed?
  • What do participants (particularly those harmed) need?
  • What agreement(s) can support healing and ensure that the harm is not repeated?
  • Relationships, respect and responsibility are key

Affective statements, Restorative Questions, and Motivational Interviewing are at the heart of resolving conflict and restoring relationships!

(© The California Conference for Equality and Justice, 2015)

Upcoming Restorative Justice Activities

Games and Activities Workshop for HAAT teachers & staff:
Thursday, January 21st 3:45-5:45pm
Come learn games and activities that can help you build community with your students and/or help students be ready for circle in your class.

Restorative Justice Task Force
Restorative Justice requires that we continue to make a cultural shift in how we relate to each other as a community of teachers, students, administrators, staff and families .
As a result, starting January we will be convening a task force to plan and implement school events that promote Restorative Justice Principles such as:
Relationships, Respect & Responsibility.
Please let me know if you will like to be part of the task force aka Restorative Justice Gladiators!

Community Building/Curriculum Circles
As we start the new year and new semester, please continue doing circles with your students. If you need extra support or need to get started on doing circles, please contact me I am here to help you plan, implement, and evaluate your circle practices.

Ask a Restorative Justice Coordinator...
In addition to helping you plan for circles in your classroom, I am also here to help you strategize on how to handle a difficult student or a conflict with student and/or colleague.

Jenny Escobar, PhD. Restorative Justice Coordinator

Feel free to contact me at any time with questions, ideas & feedback!