2019 Topics

In the above photo, Ashley St. Germaine stands in a circle of her peers as she holds her “talking stick” and speaks to the others in the circle. The students are taking part in the new restorative practice program at the Cloquet Area Alternative Education Program (CAAEP). Jamie Lund/jlund@pinejournal.com

We have two tracks this year. First Steps and Next Steps

First Steps: Beginning the Journey Restorative Practice Trainings

Are you new to Restorative Practices (RP) and Process? Are you growing your understanding of RP Circles and RP Process? These offerings are for you!

Monday: Restorative Practices First Step
Tuesday-Friday: Circle Training
Tuesday-Thursday: Conferencing to Repair Harm
Tuesday-Thursday: Restorative Language/Chats
Friday: Whole School Design
Friday Morning: Breaking the School Pipeline to Prison

Restorative Practices First Step Laraine and Paul Mickelson, Monday all day

Participation in Restorative Practices First Step is recommended prior to attendance in all other conference Restorative Practices offerings. It is a foundational training that will provide an overview of restorative justice principles and theory, restorative practices in schools, implementation guidance and a review of resources. This training is appropriate for teachers, administrators, family members, school board representatives, social workers, parents and other professionals that work with youth.

Circle Training Laraine and Paul Mickelson, Tuesday-Friday

Circle is a foundational practice drawn from Indigenous traditions from around the world. Circle fosters inclusive and nonhierarchical communication and relationship building. Circle is the basic communication process for a restorative school. Circle can be used to build community, problem-solve, teach, plan and repair harm. The process looks simple, but applying the principles requires practice. Participants will learn the elements, history and applications of circle, the consensus process and underlying assumptions.

Conferencing to Repair Harm  Carrie Manty, Tuesday-Thursday

This workshop provides a solid introduction for teachers and school staff to facilitate restorative conferences that typically include harming and harmed parties, and support people. Outlines, skills, and intuitive “know how” will help facilitators to oversee a formal process involving separate preparation meetings, a joint dialogue conference and agreement-based follow-ups. Understanding the difference between harms and disputes will also be covered especially since school cases often have both elements.

Restorative Language/Chats Mary Skillings, Tuesday-Thursday

In this introductory training, participants will explore their own mindset for supporting adults and students when a conflict arises. They will reflect on how they listen deeply and how they share who they are as people. In addition, participants will discuss what restorative language is and isn’t to include identifying deficit thinking and harmful language. Participants will practice restorative chats, which are quick, in-the-moment guided conversations to help resolve problems early. They will share ideas on how to teach the restorative questions to students.

Whole School Design and Conversations with CAEEP Laraine Mickelson, Connie Hyde, Angela Garbett, and Dave Perry,  Friday all day

Learn the critical management steps necessary to reach your restorative goals which include basic project management, visioning, strategic planning and evaluation. Participants will: Explore important management steps necessary to reach their restorative goals; Discuss the importance of a needs assessment prior to establishing restorative goals; and experience an activity that explores the beginning steps of program creation.

Breaking the School Pipeline to Prison Peter Eng, Chrissy Gamst & Erik Blesener, Friday 1/2 day morning

Can school disciplinary practices actually create a pipeline to prison? Policymakers, educators, law enforcement and restorative justice professionals are questioning “pushout” policies as a form of response for maladaptive behavior and misconduct in schools.  This session will offer an opportunity to discuss constructive actions that focus on keeping students in school with staff and offenders from two local prisons.

Mindful Moments Erin DeWitt, every morning during social hour

Explore Mindfulness, Meditation and Energy Medicine Practices that support navigating challenging situations and restoring calm with greater ease.


Next Steps: Restorative Practice Skill Building Trainings

Are you interested in deepening your existing RP circle practice and or building upon your RP process skill set? This offerings is for you!

Deeper Understanding of Circle, Emily Gaarder, Tuesday-Wednesday

This session is for people with circle process experience that want to deepen their self-awareness and abilities as a circle keeper. This experiential training will explore how circle keepers can help create and maintain safety and dignity for all participants. We will explore how power manifests itself within the circle process, including dynamics of race/ethnic, gender, and class differences. We will practice the art of deep listening and intuition, and awareness of group dynamics. We will also problem-solve “What should I do now?” moments that can occur in circle. Participants will share their knowledge, building circle resources and ideas with each other to collectively discover ways of facilitating through the opportunities and challenges of each stage of circle- from introductory phases, to trust-building, discussions of harm, and plans to move forward.