Suspensions have "dropped significantly" at Manhattan's Landmark High School, according to principal Caron Pinkus. And there are fewer fights at the school. She credits the restorative practices her school has been implementing through Morningside Center’s Restore360 Program.
Pinkus explains: “When kids have been doing circle all year, they feel part of a community, and they don’t want to disrespect that community by fighting. So there are fewer fights.” What’s more, "the staff is not as quick to suspend, even when something does happen. We’re a lot more conscious about the impact of doing that – and we have other approaches to try.”
We wanted to know: Is Landmark's experience the exception or the rule? Does Restore360 really succeed in reducing suspensions? It's an important question not just for us, but for school districts across the country that are looking for positive alternatives to punitive discipline policies.
A period of mindful quiet led to an unusual moment of sharing and empathy in one 6th grade classroom. See Marieke van Woerkom's latest In the Circle blogpost.
On April 27, WNYC’s Beth Fertig reported on the spread of restorative practices in NYC's public schools, shining a light on the progress at the Expeditionary Learning School for Community Leaders, which is part of Morningside Center’s Restore360 Program. (We trained school staff and provided on-site coaching for staff over two years.)
The school’s principal, David O’Hara, reported that his "in-school suspensions have since gone down considerably, cut by more than 40 percent in the past year alone. There was only one out-of-school suspension this year. Meanwhile, he said credit accumulation, attendance and the graduation rate have all gone up.Staffers say that’s largely because they and the students have gotten on board. Twelve students have already been trained as peer mediators, a selective process that takes several months, and 15 more have signed up.”
Congratulations to students, staff, and principal at the Expeditionary Learning School!
Morningside Center in the news:
- WNYC features progress at a Restore360 school.
- Education Week details findings from cost-benefit study of The 4Rs & 5 other SEL programs.
- Telemundo features our PAZ After-School Program at PS 214 in the Bronx.
- New York Times reports on our cutting edge coaching process.
- Education Week features our 4Rs Program.
- Live, Research & Learn: WT Grant blogpost shares insights from our 26-year collaboration with researchers.
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