What is involved?
The PB4L Restorative Practice model has three key interrelated components: Restorative Essentials, Restorative Circles and Restorative Conferences. The first and most fundamental component is Restorative Essentials, which is built on and further developed in the use of Restorative Circles and Restorative Conferences.
Restorative Essentials embody the approach of the PB4L Restorative Practice model at the grass roots level - the everyday, informal actions that place emphasis on relationships, respect, empathy, social responsibility and self-regulation. The Restorative Essentials are a relational approach to effective communication skills and Restorative Conversations. A relational approach is grounded in relational theory (Downie and Llewellyn, 2011) and aligns with the five key competencies of The New Zealand Curriculum. The Restorative Essentials supports teachers and adults within the school community to approach problems in a restorative way and equip staff with the skills needed to de-escalate situations successfully, enabling all staff to ‘keep the small things small’.
Restorative Circles support all staff and students to develop and manage relationships and create opportunities for effective teaching and learning time. They are a semi-formal practice requiring some preparation. They provide teachers with a range of processes to build relationships with and between all people in a school community, maintain those relationships, and enhance positive communication.
There are three types of Restorative Conferences in PB4L Restorative Practice: Mini Conferences, Classroom Conferences and Formal Restorative Conferences. Although they differ in formality, numbers participating and the severity of the related incident, all three types require the phases of preparation, participation and follow up, and all three use Restorative Scripts and fair process. Restorative Conferencing is a process that provides schools with ways to repair harm and restore relationships. It uses the stories of those involved in an incident and the people close to it (e.g. students, staff and whanau) to:
- explore what has happened and who has been affected
- hold those who have caused harm accountable for their actions
- provide support to those who have been harmed, and others involved.
Schools involved in PB4L Restorative Practice receive:
- Restorative Essentials training for all staff within the school, including non-teaching staff
- Restorative Circles training for teaching staff
- Restorative Conferences training for selected staff
- resources and reference material to support the implementation of PB4L Restorative Practice
- ongoing professional support.