Campus Location

Abilene Campus (Residential)

Date of Award


Document Type



Social Work

Degree Name

Master of Science

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

Alan J. Lipps

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Tina Fleet

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Breanna Heinrich



In the United States, a nationwide shutdown began in mid-March of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since the shutdown began, many people faced financial insecurity, health insecurity, and food insecurity. When the shutdown began, most schools broke for spring break and did not reconvene for the remainder of the school year. This created huge gaps in necessary services and resources for students and families including academics, mental health services, social supports, food resources, and connection to the community. This study explores trauma and stress symptoms educators and students have experienced in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. This study is a cross-sectional survey design. Educators in kindergarten through 12th grade settings in a school district in West Central Texas were given a survey of questions about trauma symptoms, levels of stress, and student behaviors. The results showed that there was a statistically significant difference between trauma symptoms before the shutdown and after the shutdown (t (70) =-8.89, p=.000; d=.99). There was also a statistically significant relationship between educators’ stress levels and trauma symptoms following the shutdown (p=.000). The implications of this research show an increased need for mental health services. Due to the traumatic effects that COVID-19 pandemic had on educators, and likely students, there is a need for greater access to mental health services.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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