Date of Conferral







Dr. Hedy Dexter


Black female students are disciplined disproportionately compared to other female students in the Georgia public school system. Negative interactions with school resource officers (SROs) may leave Black female students feeling unsafe at school. The purpose of this basic qualitative study was to explore seven Black female students’ perceptions and interpretations of their experiences with SROs in the school setting in the state of Georgia. Purposive sampling strategy was used to solicit Black female students ages 18 to 22; interviews were conducted via Zoom. Labeling theory and the theory of self-fulfilling prophecy provided the framework for explaining how Black female students make meaning of their experiences with SROs at school. The research questions asked about Black female students’ perceptions/meanings of their interactions and experiences with SROs in the school environment. Braun and Clarke’s six-step process data analysis strategy was used to identify themes. The key results indicated that SROs serve many roles in the school system; however, SROs do not perform these roles equitably, and a better form of communication between Black female students and SROs may create a positive overall experience in the school environment. Findings from the study may inform positive social change by increasing awareness and improving communication between Black female students and SROs. These findings can be used by educators, administrators, and police departments to promote positive social change by developing policies to provide a safe space for Black female students in the educational environment.