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Can restorative practices in schools make a difference?

McCluskey, Gillean
June 4, 2015

Source: (2008) Educational Review. 60(4): 405-417.

Schools in the UK looking for solutions to concerns about indiscipline have been
enthused by the basic premise of restorative practice; the need to restore good
relationships when there has been conflict or harm; and develop a school ethos,
policies and procedures that reduce the possibilities of such conflict and harm
In 2004 the Scottish Executive funded a national pilot project on restorative
practice and commissioned a team at Glasgow and Edinburgh Universities to
carry out a two-year evaluation of the pilot. In this paper, we discuss staff and
pupil understandings and offer some exploration of the underpinning principles
of restorative practice as it has developed thus far in schools. We explore the
successes and challenges schools experienced and discuss the potential contribution
of restorative practices for schools in challenging times. Finally we relate our
findings to some critical arguments about the meaning and purposes of discipline
and control in schooling. (Authors’ abstract)


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