Restorative Discipline (RD)

Restorative Discipline is a part of the Multi-tiered Systems of Support (MTSS). Restorative Discipline flips the script on traditional behavior management by focusing on community building and the development of strong and powerful relationships, not just punishment. With Restorative Discipline, you challenge your students to understand how their actions affected others and why they might have taken those actions. By doing this, you focus on repairing social injury and damage, and empowering students to be the best they can possibly be.

Traditional Discipline Restorative Discipline
Misbehavior defined as breaking rules. Misbehavior defined as harm (emotional/mental/physical) done to one person/group by another.
Focus is on what happened and establishing blame or guilt. Focus on problem-solving by expressing feelings and needs and exploring how to address problems in the future.
Attention to rules and adherence to due process. Attention to relationships and achievement of a mutually desired outcome.
Conflict/wrongdoing represented as impersonal and abstract; individual versus school. Conflict/wrongdoing recognized as interpersonal conflicts with opportunity for learning.
One social injury compounded by another. Focus on repair of social injury/damage
School community as spectators, represented by member of staff dealing with the situation; those directly affected uninvolved and powerless. School community involved in facilitating restoration; those affected taken into consideration; empowerment.
Accountability defined in terms of receiving punishment. Accountability defined as understanding impact of actions, taking responsibility for choices, and suggesting ways to repair harm.

Young people care a lot about how they're treated When punished, it is easy for them to fixate on the harm they experience rather than how their behavior may affect others. This focus on the self leads to resentment toward the punisher. And resentment turns into resistance to participation in activities and disassociation and/or aggression toward others.

Restorative practices take incidents that might otherwise result in punishment and create opportunities for students to become aware of the impact of their behavior, understand their obligation to take responsibility, and take steps to make things right.

Through this process, students learn how to interact and manage their relationships with adults and peers. They become better equipped to understand how their actions impact others and how to monitor future behavior. Restorative practices encourage accountability, improve school safety, help strengthen relationships, and create Productive learning environments.

We currently offer multiple ways of learning about Restorative Discipline or bringing it to your campus. We host free administrator trainings three times a year, a Restorative Discipline Facilitator Training twice a year, and a Restorative Discipline Campus Team Training and Coaching Support Contract.

The Restorative Discipline Campus Team Training and Coaching Support Contract includes:

  • 9 Total Days of Professional Development
  • 4 Days of Team Training at Region 13
  • 5 Days of onsite coaching


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RD Builds Stronger Communities.

Want to learn more about RD or bring it to your campus? Contact Angela Isenberg for info about RD.

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