Category Archives: Information

Restorative Discipline

“Restorative Discipline is a whole-school, relational approach to building school climate and addressing student behavior that fosters belonging over exclusion, social engagement over control, and meaningful accountability over punishment.” Dr. Marilyn Armour, IRJRD founder

Restorative Discipline is a Texas Model of Restorative Justice and Restorative Practices in schools.  Like Restorative Practices, Restorative Discipline is preventative, building strong relationships and communities through  shared values, mutual respect, effective communications, inclusivity and shared stories.  Additionally, like Restorative Justice, Restorative Discipline effectively deals with wrongdoing and harm by giving opportunities to all involved parties to “tell their story,” describe how the incident has affected them, share their needs, and offer solutions for resolving the situation, repairing the harm and moving forward.

School in which Restorative Discipline has been implemented with fidelity have documented reductions in discipline referrals, suspensions and expulsions, improved campus climate and culture, strengthened relationships across the campus, and increases in student achievement.

Restorative Justice

Restorative justice is a theory of justice that emphasizes repairing the harm caused by criminal behavior. It views crime as a violation and harming of people and relationships.

It is an approach to problem solving that is based around three basic concepts:

  • When crime (or wrongdoing) occurs, the focus is on the harm that has been done to people and relationships

  • When harm has been done, obligations and liabilities have been created

  • All involved parties, wrongdoers, victims and the community, should be included in the resolution process

Restorative Justice programs are characterized by four key features:

  • Inclusion – all affected parties are given opportunity to participate in the resolution process

  • Encounter – victims, wrongdoers, their families and community members who want to are given opportunities to meet to discuss the incident and its impact on them

  • Amends – wrongdoers are expected to take the agreed upon steps to repair the harm their actions caused Reintegration – seek to restore wholeness and relationships so that all affected parties can return to being contributing members of the community



Restorative Practices

Restorative practices is a social science that studies how to create, improve and repair relationships between people and communities. Its goal is to build healthy communities by strengthening connections and relationships between community members, improving meaningful communication, fostering shared community values, and enhance understanding and empathy. 

The use of restorative practices has been shown to:

  • reduce crime, violence and bullying

  • improve behavior

  • strengthen communities

  • develop effective leadership

  • restore relationships

  • repair harm

Restorative Practices evolved in part from the concepts and principles of Restorative Justice.  It differs in that Restorative Justice is widely viewed as primarily reactive, responding to problem behavior and wrongdoing after the behavior occurs.  Restorative Practices includes processes that are proactive, building relationships and a sense of belonging and community to prevent conflict and wrongdoing.