Restorative practice is an evidence based approach to building and maintaining positive relationships. The essence of restorative practices is that human beings are happier, more productive and more likely to make positive changes in their behaviour when those in positions of authority do things with them, rather than to them or for them. The high support/high challenge to professional practice will enable improved outcomes for children and young people.
Restorative Practice offers clear and proven ways to build better managers and stronger teams, equipping them with skills to face change and develop services to show clear outcomes and improve-ments. It supports staff working with children and young people and the people caring for and supporting them before situations get to crisis point. Working with families, rather than doing things to them or for them builds resilience, enhances problem solving skills and fosters compassion over aggression. The processes used focus upon; removing barriers, proactively promoting a sense of community, understanding, social responsibility and shared accountability.
Workforce Development are the service in Leeds City Council who offer Restorative Practice Training.
The minds of those in a restorative school are focused on strengthening and repairing relationships, are inquisitive about what needs to happen, and avoid attributing blame. (Thorsborne & Blood, 2013).
Leeds Case Study
Manor Wood Primary School has embedded the restorative approach across their setting, and this was noted several times in their most recent OFSTED inspection of which the overall outcome was Outstanding. They mentioned that “Pupils’ behaviours and attitudes to learning are exemplary. All staff place restorative practice techniques at the heart of their teaching. These consistent messages help pupils thrive.” Workforce Development were fortunate enough to collaborate with Manor Wood on a video showing the impact of restorative practice in their school, which is included below. The team support work in schools and residential settings.