Tendaji is creating a generation of scholarly, wholesome, well-rounded citizens of the world, regardless of one’s start or background.

Why it Exists?

The issue of student expulsion, along with the broader context of the Cradle to Prison pipeline, presents significant challenges to the education system. Expulsion rates vary, but data reveals that a substantial number of students face expulsion each year. This severe disciplinary action disrupts their education, leading to a loss of valuable learning time.

Moreover, the Cradle to Prison pipeline refers to the disturbing trend where students who experience expulsion and other negative disciplinary measures are at a higher risk of being funneled into the criminal justice system. Studies have shown that expelled students are more likely to struggle academically, have increased dropout rates, and face a higher likelihood of

Addressing the Cradle to Prison pipeline requires a multi-faceted approach. Schools and communities must implement alternative disciplinary strategies that prioritize prevention, intervention, and restorative practices. By focusing on addressing root causes of disruptive behavior, providing support services, and fostering a positive school climate, the pipeline can be disrupted.

Program overview

The Tendaji Reclaiming Scholars Program focuses on addressing the social-emotional needs of students and fostering their character development to support their success. The program utilizes various components, including restorative circles, workshops, behavior modification, character building, and people skills training. By participating in the program, students gain a better understanding of how their behavior can lead to positive or negative consequences.

The program specifically targets students who display disruptive behavior that hampers classroom instruction. These students may require temporary removal from the school site. During this period, they have the option to participate in on-site Restorative Circles or join the off-site Reclaiming Scholars Program.

The On-Site Restorative Circles, facilitated by Tendaji’s Behavioral Specialist, take place on the school campus. These circles provide a platform for students to address their behavior and grievances within the familiar school environment. The aim is to promote cohesion among students and administrators while fostering a growth mindset and positive relationships.

Furthermore, the Reclaiming Scholars Program offers comprehensive support at the Tendaji Campus. Students engage in one-on-one sessions, group sessions, character building activities, social-emotional learning, and academic assistance. They can continue their academic work while addressing their negative behaviors. Workshops are also provided for students and families to support positive changes in the home environment. Follow-ups by the Behavioral Specialist ensure continued progress when students return to their base site.

Through its programming, Tendaji ensures that students have the opportunity to understand and overcome their negative behaviors, fostering personal growth, and facilitating a positive learning environment.


Main alignment

Restorative Justice based Student Discipline/Conduct

Restorative Justice based Staff Engagement

Restorative Justice based Parent, Family, Community Engagement

Restorative Justice based Professional Development, In-services

Restorative Justice based Coaching & Technical Assistance Support

Targeted Restorative-based School
Improvement System Action Steps

Diagnostic Needs Assessment & Data Analysis Audit

Prescriptive Strategic Action School Improvement Plan Alignment

Evaluation, Monitoring, & Accountability Plan Alignment

Year-round Restorative-based/ Behavior/Social Intervention Program/ Services Alignment

Year-round Restorative-based Professional Development & Training [Cultural Relevant Focus] Alignment

Year-round On/Off-Site Restorative-based Coaching & Technical Assistance, & Support Alignment [Consultants] Visits


Targeted School Improvement Action Plan Team

• Restorative-based professional development implementation [PLC” s}.

• Restorative-based Large/Small group restorative circles implementation.

• Restorative-based Coaching &Technical Assistance Support implementation.

• Restorative-based K-5 satellite site implementation.

• Restorative-based K-12 satellite site demonstration classrooms implementation.

Targeted Program Accountability Plan

  • Step


    Reduce student discipline suspensions & /or exclusionary behav

  • Step


    Impact positive student academic outcomes.

  • Step


    Provide targeted restorative-based professional development.

  • Step


    Provide targeted restorative-based Staff Engagement Interventions.

  • Step


    Provide targeted restorative-based Parent, family, community engagement interventions.

  • Step


    Provide targeted restorative-based coaching & technical support Interventions.

Our Impact

Tendaji’s Reclaiming Scholars Program is currently partnered with the Little Rock School District (LRSD) with seven schools utilizing this program, and the Pulaski County Special School District (PCSSD) with four partner schools. Westwind School of Performing Arts, a Central Arkansas open-enrollment public charter school, is also a Reclaiming Scholars Program partner.

Since its inception, our Reclaiming Scholars Program has served:
  • 700 students through the OSS program, Mediation Services, Social Emotional Learning Exposure, and virtual services.
  • 202 guardians through parent/guardian program exit sessions and parent workshops.
  • 1,848 6th graders served through WRAP sessions.
  • 106 administrators and teachers serviced through professional learning centers.

Data indicates that 85% of the students who successfully complete Reclaiming Scholars exhibit positive behavior and refrain from negative behaviors at school.


Relationship Maintenance

Our behavior specialists go beyond the program and maintain relationships with students once they’ve returned to the classroom by conducting visits to schools.

Consistent Communication

This is a crucial part of Reclaiming Scholars. It allows mentors and counselors to communicate with school administrators, connect with the student and provide additional services as needed.

Holistic Approach

This program is contributing to lower student suspension rates at each of our four partner schools while meeting the emotional, social and educational needs of students in the program.