The psychology of behaviour management (part 2)

Evidence into Practice

A frequent observation in schools is that the same children tend to end up in detention over and over again. The belief that ‘punitive’ approaches to school discipline were proving ineffective or even counter-productive has led to an interest in ‘restorative’ practice approaches. These approaches appear strongly influenced by ‘positive psychology’ and frequently also import ideas from a variety of therapeutic disciplines like cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).

Part 2: Restorative practice approaches

The roots of this behaviour management strategy are ‘restorative justice’ programmes arising from criminology. Difficult to define and frequently implemented under a variety of different names, restorative justice is sometimes typified as a compromise position in the ‘rehabilitation vs retribution’ debate. A meta-analysis by Latimer, Dowden and Muise (2005) offered the following definition:

“Restorative justice is a process whereby all the parties with a stake in a particular offence come together to resolve collectively how to deal with…

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