Peace circles, which have their roots in the practices and tribal wisdom of Native Americans, are circles of equals who meet to discuss matters of significance in their communities. They have slowly taken hold in modern criminal justice systems, especially juvenile justice systems, and in schools around the world. They are part of a broad concept known as restorative justice, which seeks to build stronger, more trusting and connected schools, neighborhoods and cities.

“One of the most important contributions of Circles is the strengthened web of relationships among a group of people.  It may be in a classroom, neighborhood, workplace, family of faith group.  As people sit together, talk about values, share personal stories, and work through disagreements in an atmosphere of respect and caring, they weave strong cords of connection among themselves.  Those connections increase the community’s capacity to take care of all its members and to find solutions when problems arise” –Kay Pranis, “The Little Book of Circle Processes: A New/Old Approach to Peacemaking.”

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