Teachers' Views of Issues Involving Students' Mental Health

Robert W. Roeser, Carol Midgley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


This study addresses (1) regular classroom teachers' views of their role in promoting their students' mental health (N = 95) and feelings of burden associated with students' mental health needs (N = 192), (2) teachers' beliefs and reported instructional practices associated with these mental health-related beliefs, and (3) the sensitivity of teachers to the mental health needs of individual students. To address teachers' sensitivity, we compared fifth-grade students whom teachers nominated as being able to benefit from mental health services to students who were not nominated on a series of teacher and student self-ratings of adjustment (N = 796). Survey results showed that a majority of teachers (99%) believed that addressing students' mental health needs was part of their role but felt somewhat burdened by these needs, especially in classes with students who exhibited greater difficulties. Teachers' sense of efficacy and reported use of task-focused instructional practices were negatively associated with feelings of burden. Furthermore, based on teachers' ratings and students' self-reports of adjustment, regular classroom teachers were good informants regarding which students were most likely to benefit from mental health services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)114-133
Number of pages20
JournalElementary School Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Nov 1997

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education


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