Creating Connected Communities through Restorative Practices

Benjamin Lester

The current generation of K-12 students are living through a time of unprecedented disruption and change to the child/adolescent developmental experience. This disruption is a result of a variety of factors primarily driven by technological advancements and the COVID-19 global pandemic. Many students have an unreconciled feeling of isolation and discontent often manifested as maladaptive or detrimental. As a result, these feelings have resulted in students lacking a sense of belonging and connection. Ostracism and isolation are something we can strategically and purposefully counteract through a restorative practices mindset and approach. This talk will focus on how restorative practices put respect, relationships, responsibility, repair, and reintegration at the center of developing an engaged and empathetic connected community.