OPINION: Restorative Discipline Doesn’t Work

The goal of restorative discipline is to limit suspensions, detentions, and arrests and replace them with intentional consequences that promote accountability and personal growth. While restorative discipline seems beneficial the outcome is not. There are too many negatives seen in the use of a restorative action plan for discipline in schools.

Firstly, restorative discipline takes time and energy. In some situations, time doesn’t allow for waiting weeks to handle conflict. For example, many schools that have implemented a restorative discipline have had threats and or have resulted in a school shooting at one point in time. This is a result of not handling the situations before that had led up to threats and shootings.

In some situations, time doesn’t allow for waiting weeks to handle conflict. While that might work in some cases, it cant be used in every situation to have a positive outcome. Restorative discipline doesn’t hold students accountable for their actions. This program makes accountability a self-responsibility.

Along with this, no contract agreements or other contracts are followed. This challenges the restorative disciplinary system in schools. The agreements are made to be well-designed and well-functioning but the system falls flat, as they either aren’t carried out or have more of a negative effect on the conflict.

With all the negatives seen with the usage of restorative discipline, it shouldn’t be used in schools. Restorative action results in victims not being assessed or prevented from further action, accountability not being held for student’s actions, and student’s not being set up for the real world.