The Just School – A Punishment-free
Restorative justice provides all involved with the opportunity to heal harm
done to others.
Secondary Learning Support Assistant
Preceding chapters have described an approach to conflict and inappropriate behaviour that is at odds with the way many schools currently deal with such matters. This chapter begins by differentiating between a school that focuses on managing behaviour and one that focuses on maintaining relationships. It makes the case for a relationship management policy rather than a behaviour management policy (see Cameron and Thorsborne 2001). It goes on to pull the various strands together to support a school in developing a coherent and consistent framework for addressing challenging issues as they occur and reducing the likelihood of them occurring in the first place. It makes a case for developing the policy on relationships as a whole school community. It refers to examples from the rest of the book of how to do this and emphasises the point that the whole approach needs to be informed by the values and ethos of restorative justice. In keeping with restorative philosophy, the chapter is not prescriptive. It does, however, offer suggestions on how to proceed and what might need to be considered for a policy to be congruent and enabling, educational and developmental for every member of the community, young and old.
Schools in the UK are required to have a behaviour management policy. These policies focus, by definition, on behaviour. The emphasis is on encouraging good behaviour with incentives and discouraging unacceptable behaviour with sanctions. This emphasis is based on what William Glasser would call 'external control psychology' (Glasser 1998). This approach is widely used in homes, schools and the workplace by those in authority with those over whom they