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Why Restorative Justice Is About More Than Reducing Suspensions

KQED News Mind/Shift – Daisy Yuhas

“In the classroom Gregory observed, all those gathered shared their perspective. The teacher expressed remorse for reacting to the student’s outburst with so much frustration. Another student reflected on her own struggles with anger management. And the young man whose words sparked the incident apologized and described how the stress of a difficult morning had boiled over in his behavior. He then agreed to help his teacher set up her Powerpoint and distribute textbooks at the beginning of each class as a way of compensating his classmates’ lost instructional time.” (more)

High School Suspensions Cost The Country $35 Billion Annually, Report Estimates

NPR Ed – Anya Kamenetz

“When students get suspended from school for a few days, they may not be the only ones who miss out. A report released today by UCLA’s Civil Rights Project tries for the first time to quantify the full social cost of so-called “exclusionary discipline.”…The authors calculate that suspensions in just one year of school — 10th grade — contributed to 67,000 students eventually dropping out of high school. And that, they conclude, generates total costs to the nation of more than $35 billion…The study concludes that in-school suspensions are just as bad when it comes to their impact on dropout rates. And in places like LA Unified, teachers have complained that class disruptions go up when they don’t have the power to remove certain students. What works instead, says the report, are evidence-based practices like restorative justice and social and emotional skill-building, where educators actively help teenagers resolve conflicts and manage tough emotions to get at the roots of misbehavior.”(more)