Restoration in CPS

Abolition & Justice, Education, Love
I've been reading, writing, thinking about schools as sites of love. Nationwide, districts are moving toward less punitive and more restorative approaches to school discipline. This shift comes at a time when the civil rights arms of the Department of Education and Department of Justice released guidance to districts about minimizing discriminatory and exclusionary discipline policies. I've read comments complaining that humane approaches to discipline means ignoring misbehavior and allowing classrooms to deteriorate into chaos. This does not reflect the reality of schools that work to improve their climates nor the students and communities who are positively impacted by the changes. Moving away from zero tolerance and other harsh discipline codes requires a multi-pronged approach including: supporting teachers with classroom management, helping faculty and staff unpack racial and ethnic stereotypes,…
Read More

The undoing of schools as prisons

Abolition & Justice, Education, Love
I have a post in draft form that pulls together a couple of recent articles related to schools as sites of love, but I didn't want to let the day pass without sharing this piece from the Atlantic. Last year I wrote for The Atlantic about a notorious North Philadelphia junior high school known for years as the “Jones Jail.” Its rambunctious students wreaked such terror on the neighborhood that the police put the streets surrounding the school on lockdown every day at dismissal. Nearby shop-keepers locked their doors and porches as 800 of the city’s poorest kids streamed out the doors, often reportedly climbing over parked cars in their unruly rush to get out of school. When the John Paul Jones Middle School was taken charter and reopened as the Memphis Street Academy,…
Read More

At dusk, I’m thinking

Feminist Thought, Politics, News & Notable
It's Wednesday and the sun is setting. I'm enduring a rare headache. It has not drowned in water nor drifted away in sleep, despite my best efforts. I guess it's here to stay a bit. I'm due to stay up this evening and watch American Horror Story. I'm not normally a night owl, but I'm doing it this one time in solidarity with Sojo and Ms. Smart so we can do one of these. Just this one time though...I'm thinking about compassionate capitalism. I imagine such a thing exists. I want you to imagine it, too. I aim to find it, and write about it, as to expand our understanding about what's possible in a loving society. I'm thinking about practitioners of restorative justice, especially those in Georgia or in the south.…
Read More