Date of Award

Winter 12-15-2022

Document Type

Project (696 or 796 registration)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Curriculum & Instruction


Graduate Studies

Committee Chair

Kathy Enger


ACEs, Trauma, Professional Development


When students experience trauma or adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) in the home, such as substance abuse, mental illness, neglect, or violence, schools become an important place in which support, kindness, and understanding are needed the most. School can, for some students, be a place of physical safety and emotional stability. Oftentimes, the weight of what is going on at home or in the community is being miscategorized and is seen as misbehavior or laziness in a student. If teachers do not learn how to deal with the trauma in a supportive and validating way, students will stay distracted and disengaged and inevitably fall behind, and even the best curriculum can’t get students with ACEs back on track. This study will look into teacher professional development on trauma and ACEs and how it can impact the classroom climate and create a more understanding environment that will foster growth and learning in students who have otherwise been unsuccessful.



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