What Is 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.