The Brown Center invites you to our Faculty Spotlight on Wednesday, October 28th at 12:00 PM on Blackboard Ultra. The spotlight series is a showcase of research, creative inquiry, and other scholarly engagement of the campus community. Stop by and learn about the research of our talented Stetson community!

Dr. Rajni Shankar-Brown – Associate Professor and Jessie Ball duPont Endowed Chair of Social Justice Education

Department of Education

Examining Turnover and Supporting the Wellbeing of PreK-12 Educators in High-Poverty Public Schools

Educator wellbeing and child poverty are social justice issues that merit our immediate attention. In this presentation, I will provide an overview of my summer grant project – Examining Turnover and Supporting the Wellbeing of PreK-12 Educators in High-Poverty Public Schools. My project focuses on supporting Pre-K 12 educator wellness, particularly in the context of high poverty public schools. It is rooted in the understanding that educator wellbeing should be prioritized because educators deserve to be healthy, nourished, and better supported. Additionally, when educators are healthy, nourished, and better supported, they can better support the diverse needs of students, families, and communities. Through civically engaged research, I discuss intersectional equity issues and articulate why it is imperative to support educators’ wellbeing and cultivate healthy schools (mind, body, and spirit), particularly in high poverty communities. As part of this presentation, I will highlight both the process and outcomes of my summer grant project, discussing the evolutionary process of my work, current accomplishments and further developments. By gaining a deeper and current understanding on the critical issue of educator turnover in the United States, my project aims to illuminate social inequalities and mindfully advocate for the wellbeing of PreK-12 public school administrators, teachers, and support staff.

Rajni Shankar-Brown, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor and the Jessie Ball duPont Chair of Social Justice Education at Stetson University. She teaches courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels in the College of Arts and Sciences, including action research. In addition, she is an Executive Board Member of the National Coalition for the Homeless, a member of the Nina B. Hollis Institute for Educational Reform, a member of the Volusia Homeless Education Leadership Committee, the Co-Director of Acts of Kindness and Justice, and the Co-Chair of Equity and Justice for the International Society for Teacher Education and Information Technology. Dr. Shankar-Brown is a publicly engaged scholar who embraces and embodies Boyer’s expanded model of scholarship, intentionally working to build bridges between theory and practice.