After months of imagining and planning, the first iteration of Brooklyn Friends School’s Institutes for Justice and Transformational Change launched this past week and was a rousing success. The Institute, entitled—Restorative Justice and Practices: Strengthening Relationships—was a comprehensive professional development opportunity, which focused on many layers of restorative justice, including its origins, principles, storytelling, theory and practice, and more!
“We want you to create the framework for your school communities that result in a positive impact to the self,” BFS Head of School, Crissy Cáceres, told the participants. “This is a time in which you cannot disconnect the self from the work that you are learning. They will become fused. … I believe that we should be proselytizing about things that are good for the human experience and this institute is one of those things.”
The three-day institute was facilitated by some of the biggest names in the field, including BFS’ own Director of Diversity, Equity, and Belonging, Dr. AnaMaria Correa, and Head of Middle School, Nitya York.
“People were willing to be vulnerable with each other and to go deep, even with people that they just met,” said Jay Rapp, BFS’ Assistant Director of Strategic Initiatives and Alumni Relations, as well as the architect of the Institutes for Justice and Transformational Change. “The participants are taking back not just what they received here from the program, but they are taking back the connections that they made over the past three days … and that’s what we had hoped for when we imagined the Institutes for Justice and Transformational Change.”
Twenty-five educators from around the nation traveled to Downtown Brooklyn for this debut institute and had nothing but positive things to say as the week drew to a close.
“It felt really good that the ethos [of BFS] to the summer institute,” said Johára Tucker, Chief of Equity and Belonging at The Dalton School in Manhattan. “Feeling held, feeling seen, being able to just be in quiet—I think that has helped us as a cohort really do this work together.”
CLICK HERE to watch a video highlighting the institute.
CLICK HERE to view a photo gallery from the institute.