Professional Development



Introduction to Restorative Practices & Circles

Participants will learn practical strategies to build strong, healthy relationships with students and colleagues. There will be interactive experiences, including learning how to use circles effectively to facilitate conversations and build community. Through video, practice and discussion we will come to a full understanding of the fundamental unifying premise of restorative practices—that people are happier, more cooperative and productive and more likely to make positive changes in their lives when those in positions of authority do things with them rather than to them or for them.

Register by clicking on the link and filling in the Google form.  Contact for more information.

Monday February 4, 2019 from 8am to 3pm in the Special Services Conference Room on L Street

Tuesday March 5, 2019 from 8am to 3pm  in the Special Services Conference Room on L Street

A Multi-tiered Approach to Restorative Practices

Participants will learn practical implementation strategies to develop a multi-tiered Restorative Practices program at their sites.  Participants will also learn how Restorative Justice Conferencing benefits victims, offenders, and the community by actively involving those affected by wrongdoing in the process of repairing harm and by fostering closure and emotional healing.  Team registration and completion of Introduction to Restorative Practices & Circles are required.

Contact Dr. or for more information.

Wednesday February 13, 2019 from 8am to 3pm Rooms A&B at the District Office on 5th Avenue

Dr. Ernie Mendes

Engaging the Adolescent Brain

Increase attention, focus, and content recall. Understand how the social/emotional and physical systems can support the cognitive system in learning. Participants will learn:  the latest research on how the adolescent brain best learns; how to engage the four natural learning systems; numerous review strategies; and how to elicit emotional states that are most conducive for learning.

Working with Challenging Behavior

Manage the oppositional/defiant learner; the unmotivated learner; and the gifted learner. Understand the causes of misbehavior, resistance and oppositional behaviors of the adolescent student and how to reduce and diffuse those effectively. Learn how to address the top 8 reasons for lack of motivation in students. Understand the often misunderstood characteristics of the gifted learner, and how to engage them.

Emotional Intelligence and Mindfulness

A look at the current research on mindfulness practices and their positive effects for the classroom teacher and for students. Experience mindfulness as a tool to increase one’s emotional intelligence, reduce stress, and create a more peaceful classroom. Teachers who effectively manage their cognitive-emotional states get better results with the students they are teaching. Participants will gain tools to regulate mind-body states more effectively and efficiently, resulting in reduced stress. Participants will experience several practices that they can use immediately.

Thursday February 7th from 8am to 3pm, Otay Ranch High School Multipurpose Room

Dynamic Conversation Coaching Skills

Learn the conversation skills to bring out the best in colleagues and students and to promote learning, thinking, and motivation.

This course will teach how to:

– conduct conversations that move people to insight and change

– craft questions that elicit an individuals internal resources and build resiliency

– reduce defensiveness in conversations

– increase accountability

– increase rapport

– increase influence

Friday April 19th from 8am to 3pm, Otay Ranch High School Multipurpose Room

For more information, please contact

National Conflict Resolution Center (NCRC)

The department of Equity, Culture and Support Services has partnered with the National Conflict Resolution Center to bring a variety of effective training programs in the areas of communication and conflict resolution.

The Artful Conversation

The Artful Conversation helps participants learn how to communicate their needs with people in a way that helps build the relationship, rather than hurts it. Actual examples shared from the lives of the participants helps them to apply these skills to their lives in a practical way. A deeper understanding of how others perceive and process conflict allows participants to gain new insights into their relationships and how to adapt their style to work more effectively with those around them in the work environment or in the community.

Wednesday January 23, 2019 from 8am to 11am in Rooms A&B at the District Office on 5th Avenue

Monday February 4, 2019 from 12pm to 3pm in Rooms A&B at the District Office on 5th Avenue

The Art of Inclusive Communication

Participants learn a model for understanding intercultural (and other identities) awareness and learn skills that help their own development in all kinds of diverse settings.  Fun, yet -provoking exercises help participants learn about how the unwritten rules we live by are not always universal. Diversity in the fullest sense of the word, including not only race and ethnicity, but also gender, sexual orientation, age, lifestyle, and abilities are explored and valued.  Recognition of the advantages some have and the history of exclusion are touched upon in a way that helps people move forward together.  Additionally, a look at how respectful communication can address  difficult  comments from others that might be considered racist, sexist, ageist, homophobic, or in other ways derogatory to others. All of this is done in a safe and respectful learning environment.

The Exchange

Through this interactive course, district administrators are trained to exercise specific communication skills when faced with conflict situations and a four-stage process to follow.  Techniques are also taught in how to manage conflict between others and the use of a collaborative approach when necessary.

Tuesday February 12, 2019 from 8am to 3pm in Rooms A&B at the District Office on 5th Avenue

For more information, contact  For The Exchange training, contact Dr.