Developing Partnerships

STEP 1. Identify Stakeholders

The convener identifies stakeholders.

STEP 2.  Convene Stakeholders

The convener must bring the stakeholders together.  At this point, the convener will identify a facilitator, who will engage the stakeholders during the remainder of this process. When gathered, the stakeholders should frame issues using data and research. Stakeholders may wish to consider challenges related to: poverty, zero tolerance policies, suspensions and expulsions, limited access to counseling and mental health services, and funding.

STEP 3.  Commit to Shared Outcomes

Stakeholders should establish desired outcomes. Outcomes may include: increased school attendance, improved school safety, use of positive discipline, increased graduation rates, reduced suspensions, and re-enrollment for court-involved youth.

STEP 4.  Establish a New Protocol

The heart of a school-justice partnership is the implementation of a formal agreement or protocol developed by the stakeholders. To develop this agreement, the facilitator should guide the stakeholders in answering the following questions:  

  • Who will decide the terms of the agreement?
  • What will be the process for gathering input from stakeholders?
  • What school-related offenses should not result in a referral to the court?
  • What accountability measures do we have in place or can be established to effectively respond to school-related offenses?
  • How will we respond to students that are not amenable to accountability measures because of trauma or other underlying causation?
  • How are we going to monitor compliance with the written agreement and measure performance and outcomes?

STEP 5.  Collect the Data and Measure Performance

Additional Resources