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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award

January 2020

Degree Type


Degree Name



Educational Leadership and Policy

First Advisor

Ben Pogodzinski


The purpose of this quantitative research study was to examine the association between instructional and non-instructional staff perceptions of school culture and the implementation of trauma-informed care in a small urban school district. Organizational culture as used as the conceptual framework for this study. Before implementing trauma-informed care across the school district, all staff members, including contract and employees, participated in district-wide professional development. A nonexperimental, correlational research design was used, with 91 support staff, teaching faculty, and administrators completing three instruments, the School Culture Triage (SCTS), Attitudes Related to Trauma-Informed Care (ARTIC-35), and demographic surveys. Age was the only independent variable that could be used to predict trauma-informed care. When the position of the participants was compared on school culture, school staff had statistically significantly higher scores for affiliative collegiality than teaching faculty. No statistically significant differences were found for the five subscales related to trauma-informed care: underlying causes of problem behavior and symptoms, responses to problem behavior and symptoms, on the job behavior, self-efficacy at work, and reaction to work. The scores for school culture and trauma-informed care were positive indicating alignment of all instructional and noninstructional school district employees regarding the school culture that supported trauma-informed care. An implication for practice is to institute ongoing professional development to ensure that new staff learn trauma-informed care and the older staff have the principles reinforced. The limitations of this study are the use of a single small suburban school district, with future research needed to determine if the findings would be similar in a larger school district or with a population of multiple school districts.

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