Behaviour in School
A brief insight to Restorative Approaches in Schools (RAiS)
Following the success of the Anti-bullying project in 2007- 8, schools across St Neots felt it would be good to do another project together.
We have followed with interest the development of Restorative Approaches in Schools (RAiS) in a number of areas such as North Lancashire, Hull and London and decided to investigate further. Some members of the St Neots Schools Forum visited schools who have already adopted RAiS. They were really impressed by what they saw and came back enthusiastic that Restorative Approaches could really enhance the good work ongoing in all our schools.
A restorative approach is a change in the language we use to address conflict and apppropriate behaviour. It asks the following five questions:
- What’s happened?
- What were you thinking at the time?
- Who has been affected?
- In what way?
- What needs to be done to make things right?
This allows all involved to develop self awareness and understand the feelings of others. It encourages young people to take responsibility for their actions, to find ways to peaceably repair the harm they have caused and to be accepted back into their (school) community. Restorative approaches has been proven to enhance the school environment, remove barriers to learning and attendance and develop more resilient, self regulating and empathic communities.
In March 2011 seven primary schools agreed to take part in the first tranche of training and one or two staff from each school were trained to be restorative conference facilitators and the champion for their schools. Mrs Yelland and Mrs Hewlett undertook the facilitator training, however all staff from all of the schools have been given a briefing session to help them to understand the concepts and how to use the questions.
Each primary school taking part in the project was invited to have ten pupils trained to be peer mediators. These pupils, with the help of the coordinators, Mrs Yelland and Mrs Hewlett and other members of staff, assist in resolving issues between their peers during playtimes.
At Priory Park Infants we are very excited to be taking part in this project and we look forward to seeing the positive benefits we believe it will bring to our school.
Please click on the links below for more information on RAis from St Neots Schools Forum and photographs of our trained Peer Mediators.