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Home > Sub-grantees > Restorative Learning Program

The Westbrook-Windham Restorative Learning Program

Real School logo ~To provide quality after-school and summer programming that addresses and nurtures the social, emotional, and academic needs of students facing hardships in their school community.

The Restorative Learning Program (RLP) project serves 60 Windham and Westbrook students, grades 6-12, who would otherwise be disconnected from school due to long suspensions, expulsions, and/or truancy. RLP is a short-term intervention for students in educational crisis.

The program acts as a circuit breaker to break the cycle of negativity in school. It helps to reconnect students who have fallen through the cracks as well as provides an alternative to long-term suspensions and expulsions.

Through the school year students attend RLP Monday-Thursday for 4 hours a day for academic remediation and continuity, researched-based strategies for social and emotional development, and restorative justice to foster internal locus of control.

Brainstorming CiWe work closely with the sending school to ensure students are remaining academically on track or are provided with necessary remediation. Our daily “Life 101” groups uses the blueprint model program, Project Towards No Drugs (TND), to help students learn skills to increase their success upon return to their sending school.

RLP also helps to reengage parents in their child’s education. At this stage of school disruption, many of the parents are just as disenfranchised as their child and have negative feelings towards the school. Through RLP parents become actively engaged in helping their child increase his/her success in school.

In the summer, RLP offers an extended learning opportunity called the Summer Adventure Academy. This program incorporates academics, pro-social skill development, and adventure-based learning activities.

  • To date, 37 students who would otherwise be out of school for expulsion, suspensions, or frankly just dropped off the map, are reengaging with their education. The numbers of referrals continue to grow and we would serve more if it were possible.
  • Serve up to 60 high-risk (for failure, drop-out, expulsion, probation….) students per year (approximately 30 during the school year and 30 in summer).
  • 90% of our students have been successful in returning to a long-term educational program.
  • 92% of students increase school attendance.
  • 65% of students have decreased the number of behavior incidents.
  • 46% of students report their family relationships have improved.
  • 43% of students report decreased substance use.
  • 100% of staff are trained in blue-print model program (Project TND).
  • Partnerships have been created with the University of Southern Maine and Saint Joseph’s College to provide their students with opportunities to serve as mentors for our students.
  • An amazingly dedicated and passionate group of people meet monthly to provide oversight and troubleshoot ideas for helping these students most at risk.

    Members of the group are the superintendents from both Westbrook and Windham, School Committee members from both districts, teachers, guidance personnel, Westbrook’s School Health Coordinator, St. Joseph’s College Service Learning Coordinator, and Department of Corrections Community Resource Coordinator.

    The formation of this group not only has been instrumental in the success of our program, but it has created the forum for facilitation and collaboration between two school communities to work together to create better systems for the success of all students.
  • We are constantly on a quest for additional funding to sustain this program. We are close to securing funds from both school departments and have sent in two grant proposals. We frequently present to the community to raise awareness and advocacy of our program and the population we serve.