School-Based Learning

Our program began as a pilot at Madison’s LaFollette High school in 2010.

Each year, we have grown and changed to meet the needs of our partner schools.

Student training—We deliver a 9-lesson Restorative Justice Class for students in schools. This training includes lessons on restorative justice, the school-to-prison pipeline, examining privilege and oppression, empathy, consensus decision-making, and more. After students graduate, they become “Circle Keepers”. Circle Keepers are active leaders in their school communities, facilitating restorative justice circles both in classrooms and with individuals or small groups of their peers. Circle Keepers continue to meet as a group in bi-weekly Restorative Justice Clubs, where they deepen their exploration of social justice topics and continue to develop community within the school and with each other, leadership, advocacy, and social and emotional skills.

Staff training—In addition to our 3-day Restorative Justice Training Series offered at YWCA, we provide ongoing professional development and staff support at some of our partner schools in order to facilitate the whole school’s transition to a restorative approach.

Restorative justice circles—We use circles in school to resolve conflict, engage in accountability, and provide support for students and/or staff. We also use circles in classrooms to build community, create shared values & guidelines, and resolve whole-class issues.

Current partner schools:

Madison Metropolitan School District

  • Black Hawk Middle School
  • Cherokee Heights Middle School
  • Jefferson Middle School
  • O’Keefe Middle School
  • Wright Middle School


Monona Grove School District

  • Glacial Drumlin School
  • Monona Grove High School

Sun Prairie School District

  • Cardinal Heights Upper Middle School

Interested in bringing restorative justice programming to your school? Contact Eugenia Highland, Restorative Justice Director, for more information.