Date of Award


Document Type




First Advisor

Dr. Weldon E. Vogt


After years of uncertainty, there is now widespread interest in the emotionally disturbed child in the schools. This change suggests that educators now see the disturbed child as an exceptional child, a handicapped child in need of special attention and assistance.

While the delineation of responsibility between school, home, and mental health agency is not yet well defined, it is as if the schools are now saying, "We are not quite clear about what other agencies intend to do, but we intend to do whatever seems appropriate and feasible in the school setting."

Several recent events have apparently contributed to this change: emotional disturbance has been redefined as behavior disorder; federal legislation now provides funds for teacher training, special classes, and other innovations for emotionally disturbed children; and there is new professional interest in the problem.

The education of children is a major responsibility of society. Indeed, a democratic society tries to educate all persons to the fullest extent. Yet society often falls far short of the ideal expressed in this laudable enough purpose. There are still large groups of people in our society who are certainly not educated to the fullest extent. Among these groups are the emotionally disturbed children about whom interest is now rapidly developing and expanding.

Many questions about these children come to the minds of teachers and other interested adults. "Who are these children? Are there some in my classroom? What can one do for them? How educable are they? What are their strengths and weaknesses? What is the best way to develop an educational environment for them?"

An answer to the previous questions will be sought in this study.



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