Donna Reynolds, principal of Lake Mary High School of Seminole County Public Schools in Florida, connected with students by performing with the dance team at a pep rally. Reynolds—dressed in uniform pants, a senior class T-shirt and black athletic shoes—prepared by attending team practices and working with students one-on-one.
Matt Hawkins, principal of Centreville Junior/Senior High School in Michigan, has reduced the number of behavioral referrals and suspensions by two-thirds through restorative practices.
Educators ask offending students questions about how their behavior impacted others. Victims are only present during the process if they have been harmed. School staff get parental permission for every meeting. Certain offenses, such as weapons possession, can still result in suspension or expulsion.
Montana State Superintendent of Instruction Elsie Arntzen has selected 16 educators, parents and experts to serve on a suicide prevention and response committee for the state’s public schools. The committee, the first of its kind in Montana, will work to create statewide policies on mental health for teenagers.
Idaho’s Ridge Crest Elementary School Principal Randy Martineau has been remodeling a student’s room at home every year for the past three years. Martineau first finds students whose families need help and then reaches out to the community for donations. In December 2017, Martineau received enough support to also remodel the living room and kitchen for a pair of sisters at his school.