When I read the March 8 article about Thursday’s breakfast addressing Fresno Unified School District expulsions and suspensions, it brought back memories from when I was an office aide at Fort Miller Middle School last year. I used to see students getting suspended over simple things, like piercings and hair color, which caused them to fall behind in classwork.
In under two years, I’ve moved from Fort Miller Middle School to Edison High School, and now to J.E. Young home studies. Throughout my journey, I’ve wished my schools had used restorative justice because I would have had a better experience with the staff and teachers. Restorative justice would have given me the chance to be more engaged in my classes and successful, and would have helped my classmates, too.
I know Fresno Unified board members are facing a huge choice about school discipline. Their decision is the chance to make this generation of students better through restorative justice by giving them a second chance and letting them reach their full potential. Who knows? The next president or Einstein could be in a Fresno Unified classroom.
14 years old