Date of Award


Document Type

Non Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education




Educational Leadership

Capstone Instructor

Dr. Teresa Tyler

Second Reader

Dr. Oluwatoyin Akinde Fakuajo


Adverse Childhood Experiences, Academic Achievement, Chronic Absenteeism, Retention, Drop-out, Resilience, School-aged, Trauma


Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are part of ongoing discussions among educators identifying at-risk students in need of additional support for academic success. This paper explored the cross-sections of academic achievement and ACEs within academic settings. This study featured a literature review with qualitative and quantitative studies on ACEs and their relationship to chronic absenteeism, retention, dropout rates, behavioral problems, and academic achievement in the United States of America (USA). In addition, studies on trauma, resilience, and mental health are used to further explain academic achievement in relation to ACEs. The focus question of this study is: How do adverse childhood experiences directly impact the academic achievement of school-aged learners? The paper finds that ACEs ultimately affects academic achievement of school-aged learners due to the lasting effect of ACEs and human development. It also finds that the direct impact of ACEs on academic achievement can be altered through forms of identification and proper guidance from educational members. Further, the paper suggests that through proper modes of identification and guidance, school-aged learners identified as having ACEs can thrive in educational settings.

Keywords: academic achievement, adverse childhood experiences, chronic absenteeism, retention, school-aged, trauma