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Inquiry into Restorative Justice: Submission

Blood, Peta
June 4, 2015

Source: (2005) Canberra: Legislative Assembly for the Australian Capital Territory.

Blood & Thorsborne (2005) and Morrison, Blood & Thorsborne (forthcoming) have significantly contributed to the implementation of restorative practices in schools and are presently challenging practitioners to think more broadly about the implications of introducing this concept to schools. It is simply not enough to take a model from the justice system and to overlay on schools or for that matter, in any setting. It is incumbent on those implementing and supporting the implementation that they understand that this is about cultural change. Working restoratively requires a shift from an authoritarian/ punitive way of dealing with inappropriate behaviour to the authoritative/relational. It also links to two other main bodies of effective school practice: the elements that lead to students feeling connected to their school (Blum et. al., 2002) and productive pedagogy or the art of teaching and learning (Lingard et al. 2003). Many schools in the ACT have commenced the implementation of restorative practices. However, sustainability and maintaining integrity of practice are high priorities, with implementation hinging on securing additional funding. Successful implementation takes three to five years and needs to be supported long term, otherwise the ACT risks schools implementing poorly, or seeing this as another tool in the toolbox. (excerpt)


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