• $200.00 – Program Price

Date & Time Details: Date: Friday, April 26, 2024 Time: 9:00am — 4:00pm

Location: Topa Institute

Address: 9739 Ojai Santa Paula Road, Ojai, CA, USA

Contact: Topa Institute

Email us about program

Council Training for Educators

with O' Kawai Kin and Marc Rosner

April 26, 2024

Council Training for Educators

with O’Kawai Kin and Marc Rosner

Date: Friday, April 26, 2024
Time: 9am — 4pm

Join fellow educators at Topa Institute’s land sanctuary to experience the practice of “Council” and learn how you can bring the benefits of Council to your school. 

Council is a profound and time-honored practice that nurtures open and compassionate communication within school communities. It offers a structured yet flexible framework for dialogue, fostering a sense of belonging, trust, and empathy among participants. Council is marked by a commitment to active listening, authentic sharing, and mutual respect, making it an invaluable tool for creating harmonious and inclusive environments in schools.

The benefits of Council include:

    • Enhanced Communication: Council cultivates strong communication skills, enabling students, educators, and staff to express themselves effectively and genuinely. It promotes active listening, which deepens understanding and empathy, leading to improved relationships.
    • Community Building: Council promotes a sense of belonging and togetherness within schools. It fosters a supportive community where everyone’s voice is heard, valued, and respected. This sense of community enhances overall well-being.
    • Conflict Resolution: Council provides a structured platform for addressing and resolving conflicts in a peaceful and respectful manner, contributing to a more harmonious school atmosphere.
    • Empathy Development: Through Council, participants gain a deeper understanding of one another’s perspectives and emotions. This nurtures empathy, which is fundamental for building strong interpersonal relationships and a culture of kindness.
    • Inclusivity: The practice of Council welcomes diversity of thought, background, and experience. It ensures that every voice is included, empowering marginalized students and fostering a more inclusive and equitable educational setting.
    • Engagement: By inviting students to make connections between their lived experiences and topics from their academic curriculum, Council makes academic learning more relevant, engaging, and meaningful. This promotes active, self-directed learning and student leadership.
    • Stress Reduction: By providing a safe space to share concerns and emotions, Council can reduce stress and anxiety levels for both educators and students. It promotes emotional well-being and mental health.

Council’s many applications in schools include:

  • Classroom Management and Learning: Council can be integrated into the classroom as a means of resolving conflicts, building a sense of community, and facilitating meaningful discussions on class and curricular topics.
  • Staff Meetings: It can enhance staff meetings by promoting a culture of open communication, collaboration, and shared decision-making.
  • Peer Support Programs: Council can serve as a foundation for peer support and mentoring programs, helping students support one another in challenging times.
  • Bullying Prevention: Council can be used to address bullying and promote empathy and understanding among students, reducing incidents of bullying.
  • Crisis Intervention: It is a valuable tool for addressing and recovering from traumatic events within the school community.
  • Student Leadership: Council empowers students to take on leadership roles, creating opportunities for them to contribute to school decision-making processes.

This workshop is open to all educators — whether you’re a teacher, administrator, classroom aide, counselor, librarian, social worker, or parent. It promises to be a day of discovery, connection, and revitalization at Topa’s magical retreat center in the Upper Ojai Valley. We hope you’ll join us!

What to bring: snacks, lunch, water bottle, closed container cup for hot beverages, journal, and pen.

If you have questions about whether this workshop is appropriate for you, please reach out to O’Kawai Kin by email at okawai@topainstitute.org.


O’ Kawai Kin
O’Kawai Kin (they/she) identifies as a non-binary or “two-spirit” person and is a member of the LGBTQ+ community.  O’Kawai is an educator, Council facilitator, and artist. They studied sociology at San Jose State University, where they also played on the women’s basketball team. Following graduation, O’Kawai worked for five years as a behavioral therapist for children with autism. In 2009, they began working with Celebrate Life, an outdoor education organization in which the Council practice is instrumental. It was through these experiences that led to O’Kawai’s desire to become a Council facilitator, trainer, and ceremonialist. O’Kawai has worked at the Ojai Foundation…
Learn more about O’ Kawai Kin
Marc Rosner
Marc Rosner is the Founder of Circle Learning Institute. Marc has a diverse background as a classroom teacher, a lawyer, a mediator, and a Way of Council and restorative justice leader, trainer, and mentor.  Marc has been leading circles in schools (and out) for two decades and has provided training, coaching, and consulting to support thousands of educators to integrate circles and restorative practices into their classrooms and schools. He also has over three decades of experience as a lawyer and mediator helping schools, families, organizations, businesses, and individuals resolve conflicts, repair harms, and restore relationships. Marc held multiple leadership…
Learn more about Marc Rosner