Ohio Teachers' Awareness and Perceptions of the K-12 Social and Emotional Learning Standards Across the Eight Demographic Typologies

Date of Award


Degree Name

Ed.S. in School Psychology


Department of Counselor Education and Human Services


Elana Bernstein


The positive impacts of social emotional learning (SEL) on student's well-being are well documented. With the recent adoption of the Ohio K-12 SEL standards in June of 2019, there is much to learn about the standards and the subsequent implementation of SEL programs statewide. Teacher awareness and perceptions are critical to ensure the standards are carried out with fidelity. This study examined data gathered from eight individual interviews of currently practicing teachers across the eight demographic typology categories in Ohio. Teachers shared their awareness and perceptions of the recently adopted SEL standards. Analysis of the interview transcripts revealed there was limited awareness of the contents of the SEL standards, and limited awareness of the specific standards or curricula that their respective school districts used for social emotional learning, across all school typologies and regions of the state. The SEL state standards were not mentioned initially by any of the participating teachers when asked to share their experiences with SEL to date. In exploring the perceptions of current teachers regarding the Ohio's K-12 Social and Emotional Learning standards, the analysis revealed four broad themes: 1) there is a need for SEL 2) certain teachers have limited involvement in district SEL programming 3) SEL standards are beneficial, and 4) adding standards without taking away other teaching responsibilities is a significant challenge. Subthemes emerged for theme four, including: getting buy-in from teachers is a barrier and time is a barrier. Although awareness was limited, all participants described the benefits of SEL programming for students, including academic success and the ability to express personal feelings and emotions. As a result, it is necessary that the Ohio K-12 Social and Emotional Learning Standards are disseminated to all of Ohio's teachers and that districts strive to implement social emotional learning that is aligned to the standards and carried out with consistency and fidelity.


Teacher Education, Education, Social Emotional Learning, SEL, Ohio's K-12 Learning Standards, Teacher's Awareness of SEL, Teacher's Perceptions of SEL, Ohio's Demographic Typologies

Rights Statement

Copyright © 2022, author.