We Need Your Support, Donate to Mid-City CAN

rss-icon twitter-icon google-plus-iconfacebook-icon

Mid-City CAN Blog

Crawford students support restorative climate

From left, City Heights residents and Crawford students Phuong Pham, 16, Larissa Galeana,17, and Alan Obregon,16, spoke to the San Diego Unified School District Board of Education about the work they have done to learn mediation and restorative justice. Photo by Jennifer Cornelius Rodriguez, Information Services Specialist - Communication, San Diego Unified School District
From left, City Heights residents and Crawford students Phuong Pham, 16, Larissa Galeana,17, and Alan Obregon,16, spoke to the San Diego Unified School District Board of Education about the work they have done to learn mediation and restorative justice. Photo by Jennifer Cornelius Rodriguez

A group of students from Crawford High School's Law and Business program have been working this semester to learn mediation and restorative practices to implement on campus. They are concepts that are part of restorative justice, which is different from the traditional idea of criminal justice in that it focuses on using a community-led process that repairs harm done instead of trying to punish offenders. The Crawford students presented the results of their efforts on Feb. 24 to the San Diego Unified School Board at the Eugene Brucker Education Center Auditorium.

By Alan Obregon
My name is Alan Obregon, and myself and fellow peers have been leading a project at Crawford High School about implementing restorative justice district-wide, with ideas, such as creating a student Bill of Rights, creating a class or modifying a curriculum based around restorative justice, and having a restorative-justice teacher on every campus.

While I was speaking to the board I felt a little nervous about how they would react to our ideas, but I was blown away by how much they loved our ideas. The board seemed to really support what we are doing and I am glad that they support this change we want to make to our school system. I want to change our school system because I feel that our current discipline system doesn't help a student become a better student, unlike restorative justice where the students acknowledge what they've done and learn from the mistakes they've made.

By Phuong Pham
When I found out that we would be presenting before the SDUSD Board, I felt very anxious. I remember writing and practicing my speech just moments before our presentation. I revised the speech numerous times. When it was time to present, I spoke from the heart. I made eye contact with members of the board and I felt that they were sincerely listening to me. I was relieved to find out that we have the support of the board for our project. What we are doing is essentially changing the system of this country. The punitive punishment has proven ineffective for many years. Kids who have been expelled or suspended are likely to be expelled and suspended again. The first step to changing this system is to create a restorative environment in schools across the nation. Restorative approaches have shown to lessen suspension and expulsion rates. I truly believe that a system should exist to help students, not exclude them from school.

By Larissa Galeana
When talking to the district it was nerve-racking but it wasn't at the same time. The team went to talk about our restorative project. I believe that if we do this right and with the district's support it will have great results. I have seen the improvements students have had in some of the restorative circles. The goal for the restorative circles is to create and build relationships between teachers and students in a way creating a caring community at our school. By creating a community we will care and look after each other. I have great hope for this project and hopefully the district will expand it to other schools.

Add comment

Security code


(619) 272-7582


P.O. Box 12319

Quotation (Left)

The Mid-City Community Advocacy Network's mission is to create a safe, productive,Quotation (Right)
and healthy community through collaboration, advocacy, and organizing.

Fiscal sponsor Mission Edge San Diego.