Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


Bullying in schools-Prevention, School violence-Prevention, High school teachers-Attitudes, School administrators-Attitudes, Teacher-student relationships, Oppression (Psychology), Challenge Day, Interpersonal relationships, School climate, Social oppression, Bullying


This project was undertaken to capture the responses of administrators and teachers in a public high school setting in regard to their perceptions of interpersonal relationships with students as a result of participation in Challenge Day, an experiential youth program that targets the cause of social oppression on school campuses. As there was little prior research that indicated how teachers and administrators of public schools understand and integrate teachings presented in large-scale interventions, this research attempted to offer data that will allow for a broader discussion of prevention and intervention programs involving school staff and students collectively. A public high school in East Texas was selected for participation in the study utilizing a flexible method research design with open-ended questions. Within this high school, six personnel were interviewed and asked the same 11 questions. The instrument used in this study was a qualitative questionnaire that explored reasons for hosting a Challenge Day youth workshop, the impact, and issues encountered post-workshop. The findings show that school staff perceptions of "problem" or "distressed" students shifted in response to students' disclosure of personal testimony and authentic emotions. This study implies a need for more research on staff perceptions of the implementation and impact of large-scale bullying interventions focused on school climate, as school social workers are likely to be called upon to deal with the effects of ongoing disciplinary problems and school social conditions.




58 p. Thesis (M.S.W.)--Smith College School for Social Work, 2008. Includes bibliographical references (p. 52-54)