Date of Award

Spring 5-7-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in School Leadership


Center for Leadership & Learning


College of Education

Committee Chair

Dr. Wayne Williams

Second Committee Member

Dr. John A. Freeman

Third Committee Member

Dr. Mike Skelton

Program Director

Dr. John A. Freeman

Dean of Graduate College

Dr. Jeff Robertson


The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of the Capturing Kids’ Hearts professional development process as it relates to student-teacher relationships. This study sought to determine teachers’ perceptions regarding student-teacher relationships. The study was to ascertain the effect of the Capturing Kids’ Hearts professional development process on: (a) student attendance, (b) student achievement, and (c) student discipline. This qualitative study used the results of surveys, discipline, attendance, and student achievement data to address two suburban elementary schools’ problem of students not reaching their highest academic and social potential due to the absence of establishing relationships at schools. Analysis of the data revealed the Capturing Kids’ Hearts process did have a positive impact on student-teacher relationships, student achievement, and student discipline in a suburban school district bordering Little Rock, Arkansas. The data collected in this study should help other school districts in fostering increased student academic achievement through positive student-teacher relationships by implementing the training in teachers’ professional development plans. This study found the Capturing Kids’ Hearts process can be used to strengthen the training of teachers through this process in order to improve high-quality trusting and respectful relationships within the school setting.