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Researching the prospects for restorative justice practice in schools: the ‘Life at School Survey’ 1996-99.

Braithwaite, Valerie
June 4, 2015

Source: (2003) In, Lode Walgrave, ed., Repositioning Restorative Justice. Devon: Willan Publishing. Pp. 169-190.

While restorative justice theory and practice generally began and developed in the sphere of criminal justice, a number of people are exploring and applying restorative justice principles and processes for dealing with wrongdoing in school settings. This interest stems at least in part from dissatisfaction with traditional punishments of a social kind such as suspension and expulsion. Alternative strategies for dealing with problems in school take a variety of forms, including counseling and rehabilitation programs, teaching more effective parenting, shaping school culture and norms, peer mediation, and more. The authors of this paper maintain that restorative justice fits well within these trends in school management. The question then is how to integrate restorative justice into schools, or put another way, how to build a restorative justice program in schools. To research this as preparation for recommending intervention strategies, a ‘Life at School Survey’ was conducted in Australia in the late 1990s. This paper presents the survey issues and results.


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