This is Joshua Arcenaux.
  • JG
  • This is Joshua Arcenaux.

People are crowding into classrooms at Garfield High School this morning to attend workshops on justice—on the school-to-prison pipeline, on the way people of color are being pushed out of Seattle by housing prices, on marijuana and race.

Basically, the idea is to spread the work on what's coming, what's possible, and to plant ideas. At the restorative/transformative justice workshop—organized by the No New Jim Crow Campaign—two new programs are being discussed: a different sort of discipline system at Cleveland High School that's in its pilot year, and Bothell Youth Court, an actual court of peers for youth in Bothell.

Another new Restorative Justice Program, this one run by the city and begun this past fall, is directed by Andrea Brenneke, who says a new philosophy is needed for justice. "As a traditional civil rights litigator for 20 years, I had the experience of people coming to me for justice, and my bringing them to war," Brenneke says.

"At Cleveland High School, instead of pontificating about the woes and wonders of the world, we are actually taking action and partnering with the City of Seattle in a restorative justice program," Cleveland principal Eddie Reed says.

Joshua Arcenaux introduces the Bothell Youth Court. He's the outreach coordinator for the court, and he got involved because of his own experience growing up in Seattle up around 145th Street, in a neighborhood struggling with violence and poverty. More in the video below and here.