Restorative Justice Certification Program

Trainers: Kay Pranis and Elizabeth Clemants

Restorative Justice is the practice of addressing the needs of individuals, and the greater community system that holds them, after harm has occurred. As a part of its method, Restorative Justice gives the responsible party, or parties, an opportunity to rectify and make amends directly to the ones harmed by their actions. The practice also provides safe space for group members to express how the harm impacted them.  Through conscientious presence and support, the restorative practitioner holds this space to allow for the honest expression of deep emotion held by all members of the group.  Through this practice, an affected system can rebalance itself and the community can move forward.

Circles are a type of Restorative Justice practice that is widely used as a response to harm in a community.  In the Circle, the group comes together to engage in healing, support, decision-making and/or conflict resolution.  The group will work to form an intentional interaction in which honest communication and right relationship are the norm.  Through the circle process, the group will come to a new understanding of themselves, each other, and the path forward.

The Planning Change Restorative Justice Certification Program trains circle keepers to facilitate a process focused on helping family systems when there has been a traumatic event or context that has caused the family to become imbalanced. This can include alcoholism, abuse, sexual trauma, and other circumstances that can deeply affect family members and their healthy relation to one another and themselves.  This certification program is meant for those in the healing professions or the conflict resolution profession who wish to expand their practice or begin working with family systems where harm has impacted the individuals.  

The certification consists of three parts: FoundationalAdvanced and Mastery. The program begins with the Foundational, a 3-day basic circle training in which participants will experience being in circle throughout and obtain a deep sense of its wisdom and possibility. The Advanced Training is an 8-week program, meeting once a week for three hours, where participants will study restorative justice theory as well as become familiar with different issues family systems face.  Each participant will have a chance to deepen their understanding of group work by facilitating the learning community as a circle keeper.  Upon completion of the 8-week advanced course, students will move on to the Mastery.  This training will be a continuation of the original three-day basic training, and will build on more advanced understanding of peacekeeping circles. 

Summer Intensive:  This program is taught by Elizabeth Clemants and will be five days of Circle Keeping and Restorative Justice Theory.  We will cover the basics of community building using Circle on the first day.  The second day will focus on creating a container and how to build safety in circle.  The third and fourth day will cover how we use Circle Keeping as a healing practice and how to heal a community after a harmful event.  On the last day, we will cover how we use Circle to work through conflict as a community.  This training will include extensive reading Wednesday and Thursday evenings, and will give each practitioner an opportunity to build a circle of their choice to be lead in their own community. 

Program Details

The three courses are meant to be taken together.  The foundational course is taught in a three day intensive - Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  Following the foundational, the advanced course is taught in an eight-week experiential series of meeting in circle.  During the eight weeks, the group will explore family system issues and restorative justice theory.  A large part of the experiential component, each participant leading a circle in order to develop their facilitation skills.  Finally, the mastery will expand each participant’s understanding of circle keeping and will be taught in another three day intensive - Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.


Foundational Restorative Justice Training                


Advanced Restorative Justice Training                      


Mastery Restorative Justice Training                         


Full Certification                                                          


Circle Training Summer Intensive                              


*includes Planning Change certification and preferred provider listing on Planning Change website.

Summer 2018 Circle Training Intensive

Restorative Justice - Certified Circle Training 

Classroom:  full five days

Dates:  July 16 - 20, 2018

Time:  9am - 5pm

Trainer:  Elizabeth Clemants



Winter - Spring 2018

Foundational Training

Classroom:   full three days

Dates:   January 19 - 21, 2018

Time:   9:00am - 5:00pm

Trainer:  Kay Pranis


Advanced Training

Small Group:   (held weekly)

Dates:  January 25,

             February 1, 8, 15, 22,

             March 1, 8, 15, 22, 29  

Time:   Thursday from 7:00pm - 9:00pm 

Trainer:  Elizabeth Clemants and Glen Parker


Mastery Training

Classroom:   (full three days)

Dates:   April 27 - 29, 2018

Time:   9:00am - 5:00pm

Trainer:  Kay Pranis