Restorative Justice in Educational Settings

Safe, nurturing and engaging educational settings are the foundation of healthy communities. This course emphasizes the importance of building community and trusting relationships, creating just and equitable communities, and repairing harm in an educational setting.

This course will focus on implementing restorative justice in educational settings. We will highlight the distinctive features and challenges of this complex issue, particularly in the context of biased and racist education policies, where opportunities are emerging to interrupt the negative impact of these practices on diverse learners. While the course content emphasizes K-12 schools, assignments can be modified to meet the needs of educators working in other educational settings.

Topics include: the history and state of education in North America; restorative justice theory and social justice; privilege, bias and racialized educational policies; social and emotional learning; trauma-informed practices; whole-school restorative practices; restorative and relational teaching and learning; interrupting the school-to-prison pipeline; and how to implement and evaluate changes in educational environments as they shift from punitive to restorative.

Suggested prerequisite: Introduction to Restorative Justice: Concepts, Theory and Philosophy | CRJ315

This course is available at the following time(s) and location(s):

This course is available at the following time(s) and location(s):

Campus Session(s) Instructor(s) Cost Seats available  
Online - - $990.00 8 Register

Schedule clarification: This course begins on the first date listed and ends six days after the last date listed. Between those times, you work at your own pace within the timelines set by the instructor.

What will I learn?

By the end of the course, you should be able to: 

  • Describe how racist and racialized education policies adversely affect different groups of students    
  • Integrate restorative values and principles in teaching and learning processes with existing initiatives and programs    
  • Assess a school’s readiness for whole-school restorative justice    
  • Explain how restorative discipline supports positive child development    
  • Explain the role that trauma plays on student behaviour and how restorative practices are trauma-informed    
  • Analyze the impacts of implicit bias in teaching, learning and educational settings  
  • Develop a plan to implement restorative justice principles in your unique educational setting    
  • Apply a variety of evaluation methods to document change and improve program fidelity

How will I learn?

  • You will work within scheduled start and end dates, as well as assignment timelines.
  • Your study schedule will be entirely up to you. In some cases, we may ask you to meet online with your class and your instructor or a guest at a specific time, but these sessions will be recorded for future viewing if you are unable to attend.
  • Expect to spend approximately 10 hours per week on reading, online discussions, coursework and supplementary activities, such as watching assigned online videos.

How will I be evaluated?

This course is assessed on a competency-based scale of Pass or Fail. You will be evaluated based on a variety of methods, such as online participation, individual assignments, journals, project-based work and course papers. Assignments build upon the significant level of real-world experience that most participants bring to the course. You must successfully complete all three required courses to receive a full program certificate.

Textbooks and learning materials

You are responsible for purchasing the required course texts and we recommend you obtain them as soon as you’ve registered. 

Required textbooks

Amstutz, L. S. and Mullet, J. H. (2005). The Little Book of Restorative Discipline for Schools: Teaching Responsibility; Creating Caring Climates. Intercourse, PA: Good Books.

Valandra, E.C. & Hokšíla, W.W. (Eds.) (2020). Colorizing Restorative Justice: Voicing Our Realities. Living Justice Press.

Evans, K. and Vaandering, D. (2016). The Little Book of Restorative Justice in Education: Fostering Responsibility, Healing, and Hope in Schools. Skyhorse Publishing.

Riestenberg, N. (2011). Circle in the Square: Building Community and Repairing Harm in School. Minnesota: Living Justice Press.

Recommended textbook

Morrison, B. (2007).  Restoring Safe School Communities: A Whole School Response to Bullying, Violence and Alienation. Sydney: Federation Press.

Hardware and software requirements 

We deliver this course using SFU's online course management system, Canvas. You will receive course details and Canvas access instructions on the first day of the course. You can check if your browser is compatible with Canvas here.

New to online learning? See About Online Learning for helpful videos and additional information.

English language requirements

To succeed in our programs and courses, you will need an advanced level of written and spoken English. If you are unsure whether your English language skills are sufficient, we recommend you complete the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) with a minimum overall band score of 6.5 (unless otherwise noted). If you have questions or concerns about your English language proficiency, we encourage you to contact your local IELTS Test Centre.



Meet a restorative justice graduate

“I see this as so much more than addressing problems,” says Kim Riddell, who works in local schools. “It really is a golden opportunity to help develop positive relational attributes in our kids."
Full story

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