Date of Award


Degree Name

Education Specialist


Educational Leadership, Research and Technology

First Advisor

Brett Geier, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

LaSonja Roberts, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Steven Sanocki, Ph.D.


Organizational culture, climate, culture, servant leadership, appreciative leadership, collaboration, social-emotional well-being, uMap™, empowerment, emotional intelligence, emotional safety


Culture is a social narcotic to which practically all of us are addicted - we feel good when we belong to a group (Gruenert & Whitaker, 2015). This action research paper will explain organizational culture, social-emotional well-being of school employees, and examine the connection between organizational culture in a school setting and its impact on staff retention at Vista Charter Academy. The study will focus on educators at Vista Charter Academy in Grand Rapids, Michigan; all of whom were impacted by the unforeseen COVID-19 school closure during the timespan of their employment. The literature review indicates there are a variety of factors impacting staff retention in schools and many of these correlate to organizational culture. Therefore, it is important for more research involving organizational culture’s impact on staff to be studied.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access