Research on Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) is minimal and is limited primarily to
describing its nosology and clinical treatment practices. This qualitative, multi-case, case study identified school-based academic and emotional–behavioral interventions and factors which contribute to or hinder progress by conducting open-ended, semistructured interviews with high school students with a diagnosis of RAD and with school personnel who worked directly with them. Participants were from two neighboring school districts in a relatively large western state. Participants included five high school students with a diagnosis of RAD and four school personnel who worked directly them. One staff member had two students who participated in the study and thus interviewed specifically regarding both students. Data is reported holistically, as well as in paired student-staff responses to demonstrate the similarities and differences in the perceptions in relation to interventions and factors which contributed to or hindered student academic and emotional-behavioral progress. Five themes emerged in this study which led to specific implications for professional best practice including: 1) necessity for additional training, 2) development of support systems in the school setting, 3) providing a “go-to” person, 4) provide direct instruction in why and how emotional-behavioral progress will be monitored, and 5) provide direct instruction in how to build and maintain trust. As not all of these practices are currently implemented or intuitive it led to the development of a new theoretical explanation: RAD Teaching Practice.