Fitzroy High School applies the principles of restorative justice to student discipline.
This whole-school approach, which avoids scolding and lecturing, enables students to develop an awareness about the effects of their behaviour on others through the use of effective questions.
Students are therefore actively involved in the disciplinary process and are required to speak about their actions, consider their effect on others and help decide how best any harm can be repaired.
In this way, students are held accountable and responsible for their behaviour.
The principles of Restorative Practice contrast significantly with traditional behaviour management methods. Of primary significance is the maintenance of positive relations between students and teachers at all times.
Important principles require the following.
- Awareness is developed in students about the effects of their behaviour on others through the use of effective questions.
- Scolding and lecturing is avoided as it usually results in students acting negatively and uncooperatively.
- Students are involved actively and are required to speak about their actions, consider their effects on others and help decide how best any harm can be repaired. Students are held accountable and responsible.
- Ambiguity in finding fault is acceptable and the teacher's role to 'play detective' is reduced or eliminated.
- Behaviours are addressed and disapproved, while the student's dignity is recognised and maintained.
- Poor behaviour is viewed as an opportunity to learn through a problem-solving and forward-looking focus.
- Students are provided with future options for behaviour.
- Restorative practices form a school-wide approach to discipline.