Kailyn Fullerton, Ed.D., is a 2024 graduate of the Ed.D. program in Educational and Professional Practice at Antioch University.


Dr. Kailyn Fullerton

Dissertation Committee:


  • Richard Kahn, PhD, Chairperson
  • Susan Dreyer-Leon, PhD, Committee Member
  • Dana Specker Watts, PhD, Committee Member

Document Type


Publication Date



This dissertation describes the experience of a group of international school teachers engaging in a cooperative inquiry exploring the influence of mindfulness-based social-emotional learning (MBSEL) practices on their personal and professional lives. The current reality for educators is one of systemic stress and burnout, with teachers working under increasing pressure, and communities still reeling from the effects of the global COVID-19 pandemic. In international school settings, many expatriate educators are living far away from their country of birth and searching for belonging and community. MBSEL practices have been demonstrated to support wellbeing, however adult learning of these skills is often glossed over in schools. Our cooperative inquiry group co-created the research question: “What do we notice when we practice mindfulness-based social-emotional learning?” Group members held bi-weekly meetings to practice mindfulness meditation and reflective practices within the SEL domains of Self-Awareness and Self-regulation. Participants also practiced independently and journaled about their experiences in between meetings. Transcripts from group meetings as well as personal journal entries and introductory interviews were coded and analyzed using reflexive thematic analysis. Our findings indicated that this was a transformative learning experience for members. Five themes highlighted these findings: a) increased self-awareness in times of emotional overwhelm, b) increased levels of self-compassion, c) sharing learning with the community, d) community of practice as a supportive structure and e) deep desire to do something different. The group took initial action by creating a definition for MBSEL and starting an online MBSEL group for international school teachers with the intention of building community and supporting others in their learning. Though this was a small sample size of self-selected participants, the findings are consistent with the current recommendations for adults to engage in holistic practices for the benefit of all in their school environment. This dissertation is available in open access at AURA ( and OhioLINK ETD Center (


ORCID: 0009-0006-7350-8333


Kailyn Fullerton, EdD (she/her) is an educator and scholar who is passionate about the transformative and healing potential of mindfulness-based social-emotional learning (MBSEL). Kailyn’s career as a K-12 educator has been spent in international schools in Asia and Europe. At the time of her doctoral conferral, Kailyn was working in international schools at the intersection of teaching and wellbeing support, consulting schools and educators in order to support systemic implementation of mindfulness and SEL in schools. She also served as adjunct faculty at Antioch University in the Mindfulness for Educators master’s program. Kailyn especially advocates for the training and nurturing of adults in schools in the philosophy and skills of MBSEL, with a core belief that attention paid to adult development not only helps to transform the educators and parents involved, but also ripples out to the students and greater educational systems. She believes deeply that this work must be done in the service of equity within educational and human systems. In addition to her EdD, Kailyn also holds a MEd in Mindfulness for Educators, also from Antioch University, a graduate certificate in Positive Education from Wilfrid Laurier University and is certified by the MMTCP as a mindfulness meditation teacher. Kailyn regularly presents on the topics of mindfulness, SEL, compassion and self-care for educators and parents. For her own restoration, Kailyn enjoys board games, meditating, forest walks and deep conversations.


Fullerton, K. (2023). Integrating SEL Into Online Learning for Lower Elementary Learners in an International School Context: Stories From the Online Classroom. In R. Rahimi & D. D. Liston (Eds.), Exploring social emotional learning in diverse academic settings (pp. 1-22). IGI Global.

Fullerton, K. (n.d.). Kailyn Fullerton. Edutopia.