This research study examined the development and management of stress among elementary school teachers. The focus of the research was on public school teachers, and where appropriate special attention was devoted to the elementary school teachers in the Bureau of Indian Affairs schools in New Mexico.
Stress is a significant problem among teachers in the nation's public schools. Stress levels are particularly high among teachers in lower socioeconomic communities, which is a characteristic that applies to most Indian reservations. One public school district where teacher stress levels have been found to be particularly high is in the BIA schools operated on the Navajo Indian reservations in New Mexico. The problem facing the BIA school administration was two-faceted. It was necessary to first determine the causes of stress among the district's teachers, and secondly to develop a program to assist teachers in learning how to manage the stress in their lives.
The BIA schools implemented an EAP for their teachers. The EAP at the BIA schools achieved significant success in the assisting teachers to develop effective strategies to identify and manage stress. It was also found that teachers working under principals characterized as high in consideration experienced significantly lower levels of stress than did teachers working under principals characterized as high in their initiation of structure. In addition, it was found that i