Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Terri Edwards


School districts across the United States have seen an increase in the number of students who need behavioral support. The problem is that early childhood teachers who serve as Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) coaches have challenges implementing the PBIS framework because of lack of buy in and resources such as time and funding. This basic qualitative study was conducted to explore early childhood teachers’ perspectives of being a PBIS coach and their experiences with implementation within the school. The conceptual framework used for this study was implementation science. The research questions for this qualitative study focused on the perspectives of the teachers and their experiences with PBIS implementation. Semi-structured interviews were used as a way to collect the data from 10 participants who serve as PBIS coaches and have been in the position for at least 3 years. The thematic analysis of this data was conducted using Braun and Clarke’s 6 step framework. The analysis identified four key themes: (a) PBIS coaches must be trained and have experience to accomplish the roles and responsibilities of coaching, (b) PBIS coaches are challenged by limited resources, workload, and staff buy-in, (c) PBIS coaches promote positive school climate through uniform expectations, acknowledging students and staff, and providing staff support, and (d) PBIS coaches need resources and necessary support to improve PBIS. Exploring the perspectives of early childhood teachers who serve as PBIS coaches may initiate positive social change by informing stakeholders of challenges with implementing PBIS, and the results may inform them of possible solutions to improve implementation and decrease problematic behavior.