Transformative Programs

Positive Peer Leadership Mentoring (PPLM) Program


Positive Peer Leadership Mentoring (PPLM) Program is a Researcher [Eradicating the School-to-Prison Pipeline Foundation, Inc. (E-SToPP)] – Practitioner [Miami-Dade Anti-Gang Strategy Initiative] partnership. Miami-Dade Anti-Gang Strategy Initiative puts forward its PPLM Program model. E-SToPP draws from this model to develop research-based pedagogical group mentoring curricula that augment PPLM program goals of (a) reducing or eliminating youths’ involvement in violent crime, (b) increasing their advocacy skills, and (c) building their capacity for civic engagement. PPLM is part of E-SToPP’s larger effort to eliminate systemic obstacles that disproportionately funnel Black and Brown youth into the school-to-prison pipeline.


PPLM serves youth who are impacted by incarceration, including but not limited to: (a) have one or both parents in prison; (b) are suspended, expelled, or incarcerated; and (c) are reentering school, family, and community after suspension, expulsion, or incarceration. The PPLM Program is held at (a) Turner Guilford Knight (TGK) Correctional Center with direct-filed juveniles (children in the adult court system due to the serious nature of their alleged crime), and (b) Miami-Dade Regional Juvenile Detention Center (JDC) with juveniles detained there.


The purpose of PPLM is to empower and prepare youth during their suspension, expulsion, or detention, as well as after their release and reentry to school, family, and community, to take an active role in learning, living, and improving society. Specifically, PPLM is a pilot program of pedagogical group mentoring that uses reentry and restorative justice practices, experiential learning, structured dialogue, inquiry processes, and critical literacy practices to promote critical conscious awareness, community-building, conflict resolution, communication, leadership, advocacy, and civic engagement.

Transformative Model

PPLM sessions promote an intergenerational empowering culture of thinking, critical community of practice, and community meeting format that builds on youths’ cultural histories, strengths, talents, and positive goals. PPLM is a safe space for youth and adults to problematize critical issues and topics relevant to their lives, to share victim and offender perspectives, and to co-create reentry solutions through restorative justice practices.


The short-term benefits for youth who participate in PPLM sessions are increased (a) voice, self-confidence and creativity; (b) critical communication, literacy, and thinking skills; (c) positive peer leadership qualities; and (d) constructive social interactions with peers, community members, and staff.

The long-term benefits for youth who participate in PPLM sessions after release from detention and reentry to school, family, community, and society are access to successful high school graduation, college, work, and a healthy life as leaders in their community and society.

Ultimately, these achievements translate to safer communities; more people working; more children attending school successfully; fewer students suspended, expelled, and incarcerated; more community members engaged in positive activities; more money spent on building transformative schools and educational opportunities; and less money spent on building prisons.


To get involved in current PPLM Volunteer Opportunities & More,

Apply Here