Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)


Educational Leadership

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Pamela Scott

Committee Members

Ginger Christian, Virginia Foley



Adverse Childhood Experiences and Trauma-Informed Schools: Restorative Practices for Social and Emotional Behavior Issues in Education


Heather Easterling

The purpose of this study was to determine whether factors in school climate and culture and the educator's role in evaluating adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), trauma-informed situations, and disruptive classroom behaviors, enable a school to generate interventions needed to help students succeed. This qualitative study evaluated the ACEs and the relationships traumatic incidents had on disruptive classroom behaviors that teachers experienced with students. Although there is emerging research regarding ACEs and trauma-informed schools, there are multiple factors that facilitate the relationship between ACEs and disruptive classroom experiences.

Data collection strategies included the use of interview procedures and document review. This evidence was gathered from teachers who provided their experiences with disruptive classroom behaviors and their experiences with behavior intervention programs such as RTI2B (Response to Instruction and Intervention for Behavior) and trauma-informed practices. Analysis of data occurred in three phases: (a) categorization based on emergent themes from the interviews, (b) constructing the explanation in narrative form, and (c) re-examination of the collected data concerning discipline referrals, school climate surveys, and attendance surveys. This research study provided insight into experiences teachers had with disruptive classroom behaviors. The experiences showed implementation of trauma-informed practices, a positive behavior program, and the need for a support system for teachers to be able to better reach students who have experienced ACEs that are related to disruptive classroom behaviors. The results revealed that there were direct factors that determined that the relationship between ACEs and trauma were consistent with disruptive classroom behaviors.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.