Anita Wadhwa: How Schools, and Our Lives, Can Become Liberating Places

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Anita Wadhwa is the Restorative Justice Coordinator at Yes Prep Northbrook High School and CFO of Restorative Empowerment for Youth, a consultancy which conducts restorative justice trainings co-facilitated by young people. She also founded the Restorative Justice Collaborative of Houston. Her book, Restorative Justice in Urban Schools: Disrupting the School to Prison Pipeline, analyzes the school to prison pipeline in a historical context, and explores how restorative justice – coupled with critical pedagogy focused on the political, social and economic structures that contribute to students’ schooling experiences – can transform relationships and create space for increased student engagement and political change.

In three years, Wadhwa has crafted a youth apprenticeship model of restorative justice in which students are trained in how to conduct peace circles. Her program was featured on National Public Radio’s Morning Edition and the Huffington Post. Prior to her doctoral studies, Wadhwa taught English for five years in Houston. Wadhwa has her Ed.D from HGSE, MFA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and BA in English from the University of Houston.

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