Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Robert A DiTomasso, PhD, ABPP, Chair, Department of Psychology

First Advisor

Susan Panichelli Mindel, PhD, Chairperson

Second Advisor

Elizabeth Gosch, PhD, ABPP

Third Advisor

Andrew Kind Rubin, PhD


This study examines the short-term outcomes of implementing the Sanctuary Model in an emotional support educational setting over the 2011-2012 school year. The frequency of restraints, the therapeutic environment, and job satisfaction were evaluated pre and post implementation of the model. Study participants included teachers, teacher aides, and a licensed clinical social worker at a nonprofit behavioral health care organization in the mid-Atlantic region. Results indicated similar numbers of restraints employed in the 2010-2011 school year compared to the 2011-2012 school year. Three out of 10 domains in the therapeutic environment measured by the Community Oriented Program Environment Scale (COPES-R) were rated one standard deviation lower than the normative sample at the first administration compared to only one significant domain at the last administration of the COPES-R. There were no significant changes in job satisfaction from pre to post implementation of the Sanctuary Model. However, 14 job satisfaction variables declined after 1 year of implementing of the Sanctuary Model, which is consistent with previous studies (NASMHPD, 2009). Despite the non significant results of the current study, informative trends were noted and future directions were outlined. A further review of the significant environmental and clinical variables related to restraint use may provide useful information in decreasing restraint use.