Our staff have been involved in training in a Restorative Practice course this year facilitated by Michelle Stowe.
What is Restorative Practice?
Restorative Practice is a values-based philosophy; it aims to consciously build relationships, respond to harm/conflict in a way that honours relationships, and CONNECT us to our best selves and to one another. The values of this philosophy promote relational ways of being, it informs how we think, engage, speak, listen, and approach situations, all day, every day. There are a set of explicit observable practices that breathe life into the restorative values so that we are living values-in-action; the explicit language also facilitates and scaffolds this restorative way of being.
The intention is to develop a culture of care and respect that allows people to flourish and connect in community. Relational thinking and practices encourage high expectations to be our own best self and offer the support and care we need to reach this potential. Restorative Practice uses the restorative values as a compass; when dealing with conflict, it moves us away from blame and attack, and instead ignites a path towards connection, solutions and empathy. A restorative approach cultivates active responsibility and accountability over conformity and compliance. It also develops our capacity to regulate, recognise and communicate emotions. Emotional intelligence is the most overall success factor in careers. Ultimately it is about connection – to the self and to others.
Plan for next year:
Next year for 3rd – 6th class we plan to deliver a ten part lesson programme called Friendship Keepers which will be done in conjunction with the SPHE curriculum. They are designed to build community and belonging and to raise awareness of the restorative values. For the Junior classes we will continue to do our ‘morning check – ins’, circle time and ‘check outs’ at the end of the day.
We also hope to be able to have a parents gathering to include parents in our restorative journey, to build a Supportive and Relational Community.
The link below gives you access to a course centred around Restorative Practice at Home encouraging positive communication for everyday life with parents / guardians.