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Perspectives From the Field: Moving the Restorative Agenda Forward

Perspectives From the Field: Moving the Restorative Agenda Forward



2009-2010 Year End Report...

2009-2010 Year End Report
Prepared by William H. Paris, III
Independent Consultant- San Francisco School Alliance for the Student Support Services Division San Francisco Unified School District



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    Perspectives From the Field: Moving the Restorative Agenda Forward Perspectives From the Field: Moving the Restorative Agenda Forward Presentation Transcript

    • Perspectives from the Field Moving the Restorative Agenda Forward 2009-2010 Year -End Report, Prepared by: William H. Paris, III Independent Consultant- San Francisco School Alliance for the Student Support Services Division San Francisco Unified School District June 2010 “ Restorative Justice is creating the space to turn misbehavior into teachable moments” – Paul Jacobson ,Principal- Rosa Parks Elementary School
    • Outline
      • A Global Understanding of Restorative Approach
      • Background
      • Scope of Work
      • Supporting Schools in Looking at How They View and Build Community.
      • Discovering Common Themes and a Starting Point for Restoration
      • Implementing Positive Behavior Supports and Interventions
      • Recognizing The Type of Students Being Disciplined
      • Looking at The Types of Interventions Used to Help Support These Students
      • Looking at The Types of Support Given to Teachers to Handle Working with These Students
      • Recommendations
      • Next Steps
    • A Global Understanding of Restorative Approach
      • From the gathered wisdom of Howard Zehr, Rita Alfred, Lorraine Amustuz, Pat Zamora and our respected colleagues in the field, we recognize Restorative Justice or Restorative Approach to be a way of being that:
          • Subscribes to the paradigm that young people are inherently good. And that, life happens, and we ( the entire community) are responsible for helping them( young people help), themselves grow.
          • Seeks to promote values and principles that build upon the strengths and assets of young people. Moving from viewing troubled students as deficient or as problems that need to be removed from the learning community. But, rather as responsible members of the learning community who are apart of and accountable to it.
          • Focuses on creating balanced communities that repair harm to victims, provides accountability to offenders, and promotes participation and increased safety of the entire community, by developing the skills and capacity of all members within the community to respond to conflict and harm in ways that are healing rather than alienating or coercive.
    • Background
      • Moving forward the body of work of the 2008 Asset Based Schools Summit , the 2008-09 Safe Schools Task Force and Early Readings of The City and County of San Francisco Board of Education Resolution 96-23A1- In Support of a Comprehensive School Climate, Restorative Justice and Alternatives to Suspension/ Expulsion. Work was done in the 2009-10 school year to further define, develop and support effective strategies to promote and sustain school site based implementation of Restorative Justice.
      • Field inquiry was conducted at four school sites (L.R. Flynn Elementary, Willie Brown College Preparatory Academy, Hoover Middle School and Rosa Parks Elementary School) to look at how each school approached student discipline and what types of changes or improvements could be made to help create restorative environments that engage students in effectively learning and practicing pro-social behaviors.
      • Professional developments and professional learning communities where conducted with school site staff, school community members, district leadership, and T-10 security personnel. These learning opportunities looked at how to engage all stake-holders in the process of supporting restorative practices at school sites
    • Scope of Work
      • The scope of work varied at each school site . However, all work aligned to the focus of determining the best course of action to help schools increase their capacity to work with and support challenging students.
      • This required helping schools look at how they identify, interpret and react to the presenting behaviors of challenging students, as well as, helping them as a community articulate realistic strategies that help build relationship and better understanding of how to support challenging students in being successful with-in the community.
      • Work also included creating and implementing school based culturally relevant rites of passage programs and ethnic studies programs as responses and interventions to help support students presenting at-risk and in risk behaviors.
      Members of the Hoover Middle School Black Student Union Completing a Unity Project Sept 2009 Members of the Flynn Flyers Cultural Rites of Passage Program T-10 Security Personnel “ Protecting the Fort” Restorative Justice PLC Part 2 March 2010 Hoover Middle School SDC Class Mentoring 6th Graders
    • Supporting schools in looking at how they view and build community Restorative Approach Professional Learning Communities 09- 10
      • Recognizing the power of perception, and the power of a balanced and equally represented voice in forming any type of restorative community. Restorative Approach ask school communities to be reflective of themselves and they way in which they view and interact with young people.
      • Helping schools to create a safe space to recognize the stories and commonality of each member of its community, work was done this year to help Everett Middle School, Leonard R. Flynn Elementary School, and our districts T-10 security personnel formally reflect on how they as school communities value , view and work with young people.
      • A combined 40 hours of professional development hours where committed to holding staff community building circles and supporting staffs in articulating a restorative view of young people.
      • Here are some of their responses…
      Center Piece L.R. Flynn Elementary Restorative Justice Professional Learning Community 1/26/2010
    • Answering the Question: How do we see young people? L.R. Flynn Elementary School, as a committed team of professionals, views young people as resilient risk taking warriors, on the path of life, in need of love, guidance, support and understanding.
    • We see a needy child as a child that is often… Over-whelmed in-secure in need of love, understanding and knowledge of basic coping skills. scared falling between the cracks silently hurting
    • We see the “Trouble Maker” or problem child as one that can be… Over-whelming a tide changer Full of untapped and misguided energy and a wrong decision maker
    • We recognize that to support young people in a balanced community we need… and the ideal that we must lift each other up and not let ANYONE fall. mutual support and respect Cooperation Understanding Validation Shared Responsibility
    • Discovering common themes and a common starting point for Restoration.
      • When reflecting on the values and perspectives of our schools we found that all generally shared the common view of young people as individuals in need of love, guidance, understanding, care, and support.
      • We concluded that when clearly defined expectations, meet with positive support structures and enforced restoratively centered consequences. Students are generally capable of thriving.
      • We also recognized that despite formal behavior support structures and clear and enforced rules and consequences, some students will by nature of circumstance and experiences challenge those structures.
      • From the collected experience of our participants it was agreed that the best way to approach working with these students is to provide consistent guidance and support, and offer positive preventive interventions and structures that capitalize upon students assets to mediate or circumvent problems before, after, and as they arise.
      • Forming positive relationship with these students is seen as the most effective strategy to mediating, preventing and eliminating problems.
      • Building the capacity of school sites to effectively build positive relationship, implement, support, and sustain positive prevention and interventions structures, and articulate student success is the starting point for our move to restoration.
    • Implementing and supporting Restorative Justice Through Positive Behavior Supports and Interventions…
      • When looking to support our schools in implementing Restorative Justice it was imperative that we looked at schools infrastructures and levels of support and intervention in three areas. (Universal, Secondary, Tertiary )
          • Universal Supports and Interventions looked at our schools basic protocols and procedures to support safety and positive school climate. This included making sure that our schools had clearly stated and posted rules and regulations that informed students and families of what the schools expectation where for student behavior and safety. As well as, looking at the programs and interventions used by our schools to promote positive school climate and student and family engagement.
          • Secondary Supports and Interventions looked at the effectiveness of our schools student assistance programs and CARE intervention teams. It also looked at how we used student discipline data ( i.e. suspension and referral information) to determine the types and levels of support given to students in need.
          • Tertiary Supports and Interventions looked at how our schools identified and supported those student who where often referred for disciplinary action and or suspended. The focus of the work at this level was to determine effective strategies and interventions that would support these students in engaging in pro-social behaviors.
      The guide for looking at all of these intervention was framed by the following framework
    • Taking a closer look at the types of students being disciplined…
      • When reflecting on the student discipline data of the schools that we worked with this year we found that the type of kids that generally find themselves in trouble, have a few things in common.
          • Demographically these students tend to be:
          • African American or Latino
          • Male
          • Receiving Special Education Services
      • The presenting behaviors of these children tend to be:
          • A general lack of respect, or response to control and authority.
          • General lack of emotional and impulse control.
          • Destructive to self, and others.
          • Highly argumentative and disruptive
          • High frustration and fatigue levels
          • Low academic performance
    • Looking at the types of interventions used to support these students…
      • Research suggest that the task of positively socializing students that often misbehave requires that students are able to positively connect to someone or something that recognizes their strengths and abilities; and helps them to productively capitalize upon them.
      • School based interventions such as cultural rites of passage programs, mentor programs, ethnic studies programs, and student leadership programs all work to help students identify their positive attributes, set positive goals, and apply their hidden and obvious talents.
      • This year work was done to support these types of programs at our school sites in the following manner…
    • L.R. Flynn Elementary School “The Flynn Flyers”
      • This year support was given to L.R. Flynn tertiary students by the means of creation of the “ The Flynn Flyers” program:
        • “ The Flynn Flyers” is a cultural rite of passage program that works to support male students in the 3-5 grade who have been identified as at risk or in risk.
        • Meeting once a week “The Flynn Flyers Program supported its participants through mentorship and life centered instruction meant to teach young men how to identify their choices, recognize the consequences of their actions and give them the confidence and strength to make wise choices.
        • Facilitated through community circles, physical activity, and cultural enrichment activities The Flynn Flyers program emphasize brotherhood, unity, collective work and responsibility, and communal accountability. The goal of The Flynn Flyers program this year was to help Flynn’s most at-risk transform themselves into the leaders they were born to be.
      Flynn Flyers Before Flyers are taught the importance of unity and discipline , through physical activity. Young flyers. Group B 4 th graders “ Learning to move as one is a serious matter.”
    • Program Delivery
      • Session 1: Participants are welcomed to the Flyer program through an introduction circle in which each member
      • is given an introduction question that reveals something about themselves.
      • Session 2: Participants are ask to respond to the question; what does it mean to be successful?
      • Session 3: Participants are ask to respond to the question; what type of man will I be?
      • Session 4: Participants are asked to responded to the statement ; a Woman is a Woman Ain’t)
      • Session 5: Participants are ask to respond to the statement family is important to me because?
      • Session 6: Participants are asked to create a responsibility poster for the school.
      • Session 7: Participants are taught the cadence of manhood .
      • Session 8: Participants are taught a thinking man .
      • Session 9: Participants give an impromptu demonstration of learning to school community.
      • Session 10: Participants are given a culinary challenge, and asked to try quiche.
      • Session 11: Participants use time to reinforce previous lessons.
      • Session 12: Participants use time to reinforce previous lessons.
      • Session 13: Participants self select and use time to reinforce previous lessons.
      • Session 14: Participant are interviewed on leadership.
      • Session 15: Participants wrap up experience.
      The Flynn Flyer Program was delivered in 15 (90 minute) sessions covering topics and themes as followed: Note on program: The Flynn Flyers entered as a group of wannabe gangsters but left a brotherhood , Focused and Ready to learn!!!
    • So OOO SWWEEET !!
      • Cadence of Manhood:
      • I am learning in life what it takes to be a man.
      • It takes Faith- To believe in my-self and to believe the impossible possible.
      • It takes Courage , to never be to afraid to face my fears.
      • It takes Compassion, to care and have a heart.
      • It takes Integrity ,to be a man of my word.
      • It takes Self Determination , to have discipline (bend my back) and work hard.
      • A thinking man is the best man because the best man is grounded!
      Note: The concept of school based mentorship and cultural rights of passage programs, as an effective strategy to promote and achieve attitudes and results of success with-in at risk and in risk males is supported widely by researchers and the American School Counselors Association. For more information refer to: The American School Counselors Association Professional School Counseling Journal August 2009 edition: The Brotherhood: Empowering Adolescent African American Males Toward Excellence Shelby Wyatt, Ed.D
    • Herbert Hoover Middle School “ Black Student Union ”
      • In response to historical misrepresentation and disproportionate rates of discipline referrals and corrective action taken against Herbert Hoover students of African American decent. The Black Student Union was formed as a responsive intervention, ethnic studies and personal development course to help support the success of African American students at Hoover.
        • The goal of the Black Student Union (BSU) was to work to debunk the historical misrepresentation of African American Students by offering Hoovers African American Students the opportunity to collectively redefine and articulate their identity with-in the school.
        • This goal was accomplished through weekly workshops and activities that taught African American History, critically analyzed current events , and built team work and collective responsibility.
      Mr. Simmons helps us demonstrate early perspectives of black men. Expanding our horizons of the bay. Sailing with the Blue Water Foundation
    • Program Delivery
      • The Black Student Union at Hoover was delivered as a pullout response to intervention, conducted by weekly counseling group sessions, supported by administration and Hoover counseling staff A referred group of tertiary intervention level students grades 6 through 8 th where selected to miss 1 or 2(depending on grade level) of their Wednesday (45 min) elective periods to participate in workshops and group activities centered around the following content themes.
      • Self Reflection and Identity - focused unit designed to help students identify and articulate their personal concepts of success, self perception, personal beliefs, attitudes, hopes, desires, aspiration ,talents, and fears.
      • Cultural Reflection and Identity- focused units designed to teach students their cultural roots and challenge them to make critical observation and connection between history and their present realities.
      • Topics covered include:
      • - Cultural Perspectives and Perceptions (A contemporary look at common perceptions and misconception of African American youth)
      • - The Origins of Race and Civilization ( The Matriarchal lineage of mankind (media aide) – The Real Eve*)
      • - The Maafa (The African holocaust/ Trans-Atlantic slave trade)
      • - Cultural Oppression and Genocide ( Critical Analysis of Willie Lynch’s Speech : The Making of a Slave)
      • - Youth Movements in America (The GOOD the BAD the UGLY- (media aide) The Crips and the Bloods
      • An American Story )
      • - Historic and Contemporary Relationships ( a critical look at the social –psycho effects of slavery on the relationships between black men and black women)
      • Material was presented in a seminary fashion supported by class discussion, experiential activities, and guest speakers. Students where assessed for content mastery, through reflective essays, and artistic presentations of learning.
    • The types of support given to teachers to handle working with these students …
      • At the schools we worked with this year , there where a variation of supports given to support teachers in working with students that are considered difficult or hard to reach. These supports included:
          • Restorative Justice Professional Learning Communities and Values centered conversations (participants include- L.R. Flynn Elementary School, Everett Middle School, Hoover Middle School)
          • Professional development workshops on working with traumatized youth.
          • ( participants included administrators and select counseling staff of Hoover Middle School- This intervention was administered by Dr. Joyce Eldorado USCF through the Restorative Justice Task Force )
          • Equity centered Professional Learning Communities. ( L.R. Flynn – supported through BAYCES)
          • Of these approaches the most promising was the Equity Centered Professional Learning Community at L.R. Flynn Elementary School
    • L.R. Flynn Equity Centered Professional Learning Community 2009-2010 School Year
      • Sponsored by a mini grant from the San Francisco ED Fund the L.R. Flynn Equity Centered Professional Learning Community (ECPLC) was created to help L.R. Flynn Teachers develop the tools and capacity to work with their most difficult and hard to reach students.
      • Trained during the summer of 2009 by the Bay Area Coalition for Equitable Schools (BAYCES) Flynn’s ECPLC was facilitated by three members of the L.R. Flynn instructional team.
      • Meeting bi-monthly throughout the school year. Flynn’s ECPLC allowed interested staff the opportunity to meet with colleagues to vent and discuss challenges and promising solutions to engaging and working with students difficult and hard to reach.
      • Topics ranged from making connections with student’s who are continually disrespectful and constantly challenging adult authority, to how to meet and handle the challenges of differentiating instruction to meet the needs of high and low performers ,while meeting the expectations of state mandates and parent expectations.
      • Teachers participating in Flynn’s ECPLC reported a greater sense of connection and support to their colleagues , and found the processes of reflection and support given in the ECPLC to be beneficial in helping them hewn their craft as teachers.
    • Recommendations
      • Moving forward the body of work and experience of the 2009-2010 school year the following recommendations are made in support of continuing and sustaining the practices of Restorative Approach in helping to transform the climate and culture of schools to be healing, reflective and supportive of every student.
          • Continued funding and support of developmentally focused support staff and out reach programs that work to meet the holistic needs of students and their families. District , philanthropic and community support of positions like the Learning Support Professional, Community Health Outreach Worker, Attendance Outreach Workers, etc. . As well as, support of supplemental support services, like access to culturally relevant and respective mental health and social services, and access to free after school and extended learning opportunities for all SFUSD students is crucial in supporting the continued development of positive behavior supports and interventions that work to support all students success within SFUSD schools.
          • Continued funding and support of Restoratively focused professional development and learning opportunities for all schools. Providing schools with professional development opportunities and resources that help them develop into whole , responsive communities is imperative in supporting the transformation of the pedagogic approaches and classroom practices of teachers within our schools. Supporting teacher driven and supported professional learning communities and networks like the Equity Center Professional Learning Community at L.R. Flynn that help teachers learn effective techniques to support asset based and restorative approaches to helping students transform their actions and learn from their misbehavior is key to moving the restorative agenda forward.
          • Continued funding and support of the development and implementation of tertiary level interventions programs, like cultural rights of passage programs, mentor programs, ethnic studies, and student leadership and development programs. Helping schools to develop, sustain , and implement intentional programs and partnerships that work to support at risk and in risk students by helping them to develop the self awareness , self efficacy, and social skill set to make wise chooses and contribute positively to the greater learning community is perhaps one of the most vital keys to supporting Restorative Approach in our schools.
          • These approaches coupled with a continue sense of support and reinvigoration by the entire San Francisco Community to make social justice and equity a realty in our schools is the key to seeing the Restorative Agenda thrive in San Francisco.
    • Next Steps
      • Move pass excuses and coalesce support for our schools. Despite the harsh economic realities of today its is important that we maintain our commitment to young people. We must find ways to support the people and programs that make a difference in the lives of our children.
      • Create and support the partnerships for success- Knowing the importance of collaboration in meeting the diverse needs of our schools it is imperative that we think smart about that partnership that we form and support in helping our most at-risk and in-risk students. Continued partnerships with programs like the Omega Boys Club, United Playaz , Brothers Against Guns, and district created Cultural Rite of Passage Programs , mentorship programs , ethnic study programs and student leadership and development programs, is imperative in ensuring our students success. Helping these programs to align themselves and more effectively identify and meet the needs of schools in need of their services is the next step in delivering these crucial services.
      • Encourage our teachers. Support our students. Unite our communities.- With the challenges that we will face due to the deep cuts in available resources next year , it is imperative that we continue to encourage and remind ourselves that if it is to be, it is up to us. With team work , cooperation, mutual respect , collective work and shared responsibility we can and will make a difference in every child’s life.
    • Acknowledgements
      • A special thanks goes to the following for their support in helping to move the Restorative Agenda Forward this year.
          • Trish Bascom (SFUSD Student Support Service Division)
          • Lisa Villarreal ( The San Francisco Foundation)
          • Rita Alfred ( Restorative Justice For Oakland Youth)
          • Kim-Shree Maufas ( City and County of San Francisco Board of Education)
          • Thomas Graven ( SFUSD- Hoover Middle School)
          • Sylvia Lepee ( SFUSD- L.R. Flynn Elementary School)
          • Paul Jacobson ( SFUSD- Rosa Parks Elementary School)
          • Tareyton Russ ( SFUSD- Willie Brown College Prep)
          • Richard Maggi (SFUSD- LEAD Division)
          • Linda Lovelace (SFUSD Student Support Service Division)
          • John Zamora (SFUSD Student Support Service Division)
          • Jumoke Hinton Hodge ( Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth)
          • Stacey Daraio
          • Pat Zamora
    • Resources
      • For Information on Cultural Rites of Passage Programs and Mentorship Programs Refer to :
        • The American School Counselors Association Professional School Counseling Journal August 2009 edition: The Brotherhood: Empowering Adolescent African American Males Toward Excellence, Shelby Wyatt, Ed.D ,
        • www.ritesofpassage.org/df99-articles/harvest June 2007 : Harvesting New Generations: Afrocentric Rites of Passage, Paul Hill, Jr
      • For Information on Restorative Justice is Schools Refer to :
        • The Little Book of Restorative Discipline for Schools , Lorraine Stutzman Amustutz, Good Books, PA;2005.
        • Discipline the Restores: Strategies to Create Respect, Cooperation and Responsibility in the Classroom, Ron and Roxanne Clausen , Book Surge, CA;2008.
      • For Information on Curriculum for Ethnic Studies Programs Refer to:
        • African American History : A Journey of Liberation , Dr. Molefi Kete Asante, The Peoples Publishing Group, NJ; 1995