The aim of Restorative Practices at St Gregory's is to develop a partnership between home, school, parish and the wider community, through a shared understanding of skills required to build and repair relationships. This is our priority as a restorative school, as we see ourselves at the heart of and serving our community.
Questions to ask when approaching situations in a restorative way.
- What happened?
- What were you thinking about at the time?
- What have your thoughts been since?
- How do you feel about what has happened?
- Who has been affected by what’s happened?
- In what ways have they been affected?
- What needs to happen to make things right?
Promoting a Restorative Approach to Learning
Our school community is committed to using Restorative Practice to:
- Promote respect, responsibility and emotional well-being.
- Develop and nurture safe, healthy and positive relationships between children, parents and staff.
- Encourage learning behaviours that demonstrate a growth mind-set and a ‘can do’ attitude.
Restorative Thinking and Positive Relationships: preventing and managing conflict
With COVID-19 still keeping us all at home a lot of the time, there may be times when we feel worried and stressed and this can lead to family tension, arguments and conflict. When children see parents/carers communicating well and staying calm, it can help them cope with their own big emotions.
Restorative Thinking have put together four short learning sequences as an introduction to restorative and relational thinking - a few techniques that can help you to better manage emotions and stay calm, and to keep communicating with each other in positive ways. These lessons will support you to:
- Reconsider positive relationships;
- Think about all behaviour as 'communication';
- Start to use a line of questioning that will help you (and others) through problems and will help to maintain positive mental health;
- Deal better with stress
Here is the link to the sessions;
"Relationships built through restorative practice are the oxygen people and communities need to survive and thrive..."
(Dr Jim Longo, Washington and Jefferson College)
Restorative Practice is developing throughout the school community. We are working with the Local Authority and Restorative Thinking Ltd.
Restorative Practice will benefit the whole school community by learning about and considering the quality of relationships and communication between each other, in order to deal effectively with negative behaviours, reducing conflict, anger and sadness. Restorative Practice will help us all to enjoy a happier, calmer and healthier school, enabling children to feel safe and learn most effectively.
For real change to happen, we need all stakeholders in the school community to get involved and have their say. This includes children, staff, families and governors.
When conflict happens, trained staff lead a 'Restorative Meeting' to look into the 'incident', understand the reasons and impact of the behaviours, and search for a way of 'repairing harm'.
- At St Gregory’s, Restorative Practice is used to ensure that all adults working in the school promote positive learning behaviours through consistent approaches in all situations.
- At St Gregory’s, Restorative Practice is used with the pupils to develop an understanding of themselves and others to make their experience of school happy, successful and fulfilling.
- At St Gregory’s, we support the wider school community, encouraging parents and carers to use Restorative Practice in a way that is consistent with the school’s approach.
We are at the beginning of our journey, but very excited about where Restorative Practice might lead us.
Our Key Stage 2 children have the opportunity to apply to become Restorative Buddies and receive training to enable them to work closely with staff to ensure that play times are happy and incident free.
Restorative approaches can be seen as part of a broader ethos or culture that identifies strong, mutually respectful relationships and a cohesive community and the foundations on which good teaching and learning can flourish. Restorative Approaches provide the foundation to build, maintain and repair relationships positively with the whole school community.
When holding restorative meetings we use the following questions to support the process:
- What happened?
- What were you thinking of at the time?
- What have you thought about since?
- How do you feel about what happened?
- Who’s been affected by what what’s happened?
- In what way/s have they been affected?
- What needs to happen to make things right/ repair the harm?