INVESTIGATION OF STRATEGIES TO BUILD POSITIVE TEACHER-STUDENT RELATIONSHIPS WITH STUDENTS WITH EMOTIONAL DISTURBANCE: SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS’ OPINIONS
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Forming positive teacher-student relationships with students has been identified as a protective factor for students. However, many teachers struggle to form and maintain a positive relationship with students diagnosed with an emotional disturbance. It is essential that teachers have tools to help build and maintain positive teacher-student relationships.
This study focused on investigating licensed special education teachers that have taught seventh through twelve grade students with emotional disturbances. Out of the nine individuals who were sent the survey, all nine participants completed it. The survey was conducted to identify common negative behaviors and to identify what strategies teachers would like more information about to help them form positive teacher-student relationships. The survey consisting of short answer questions, multiple choice questions, yes or no questions, and questions that ask them to explain their answers.
The findings from the literature review and the survey data supported a need for a handbook to be created in order to inform special education teachers of ways to develop and maintain positive teacher-student relationships with students diagnosed with an emotional disturbance. Strategies are included in the handbook for teachers to reduce negative behaviors with students diagnosed with an emotional disturbance.