Suspensions have "dropped significantly" at Manhattan's Landmark High School, according to principal Caron Pinkus. And there are fewer fights at the school. She credits the restorative practices her school has been implementing through Morningside Center’s Restore360 Program.
Pinkus explains: “When kids have been doing circle all year, they feel part of a community, and they don’t want to disrespect that community by fighting. So there are fewer fights.” What’s more, "the staff is not as quick to suspend, even when something does happen. We’re a lot more conscious about the impact of doing that – and we have other approaches to try.”
We wanted to know: Is Landmark's experience the exception or the rule? Does Restore360 really succeed in reducing suspensions? It's an important question not just for us, but for school districts across the country that are looking for positive alternatives to punitive discipline policies.
So we delved into the NYC Department of Education's suspension data to find the answer.