Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Ed.D. Doctor of Education

Academic Discipline

Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Maya Miskovic

Second Advisor

Norm Weston

Third Advisor

Harrington Gibson


This paper involved researching and studying the social and emotional needs of all stakeholders in our educational system. It used qualitative methods of inquiry to gain knowledge based upon the experiences of children and adults in an alternative school setting. The Wire Academy staff and students experienced the short- and long-term impacts of relationship building and trust required for student achievement, as well as professional growth for the adults that serve children.

This study provides interviews and conversations that were genuine and qualitative, with respect to the climate and culture of the alternative school setting. In addition, it highlights the impact that trust and safety in the traditional school environment. Although this study was performed in a small setting, the results and findings can be applied in any school setting and the broader community.