Surveying Teachers and School Staff – Tools and Benefits
Surveying teachers frequently is an important assessment and developmental tool for any school administration. While doing long, complex teacher surveys frequently is not the best idea, there is another solution. Outstanda Pulse does micro-surveys that take less than 30 seconds, can be completed on a smartphone with no typing or installing of apps, and gives administrators actionable data that is fresh and shows trends over time.
This system is primarily designed to give school officials data on the students’ well-being, social interaction with their peers, and academic issues. However, the same system can survey your teachers and administrative staff. While the questions will be different, school administrators can pick up trends the teachers are seeing and identify teachers who may need added support or training.
This teacher survey process is important and has benefits for many reasons, as detailed below.
School Culture Monitoring with Teacher Surveys
School culture is shaped by the students and the teachers. If teachers are noticing a shift in student’s behavior, attitude or are seeing new challenges arise, they may be willing to note it in a quick survey, where they may not be willing to talk about it in a meeting because it has not risen to a high level of concern yet.
Teacher Evaluation Time
When working with your teachers and looking at evaluation time, they have had many more times to give feedback to administrators, which is a positive for both parties. If a teacher continually reports back via their teacher survey that everything is good, and at the end of the year they are unhappy with the year, they have had many chances to call attention to key issues much sooner. On the other hand, if a teacher is reporting through the survey system that they need added support, training, materials, or other things, then they can point to their honest concerns throughout the year. The goal of the surveys is to solve problems sooner rather than later to help students, teachers, and schools’ administrators have a better experience and a better outcome for everyone involved.
Classroom Behavioral Problems and Surveys
When you survey teachers once a week, and the micro surveys can be answered in 30 seconds or less, you can see the trends from week to week. School administrators will be able to address more classroom issues before they can escalate. When a student is occasionally disruptive, and the incident is handled in class, it is unlikely the issue will be on the radar of the school administration who can intervene. But, if a teacher answers yes to a question like “Did you need to stop class and deal with disruption from a student this week?”, then you can investigate the problem, and try to address the issue early on to promote a better and safe learning environment for all students.
Teacher Retention and Teacher Surveys
Teachers and staff want to be heard, supported, and appreciated. Those issues are key components in teacher and staff retention year after year. Surveys, where everyone can report on trends and potential issues, helps administrators identify the problem and decide on a course of action. This interaction and faster response time show teachers they are valued and you want them to feel supported so they can do the best job possible with students. Teacher retention can be greatly improved with Outstanda Pulse.
Accountability for Outcomes
When things are progressing smoothly, and testing results come back and the scores are not what the school administration expected, having added data can be invaluable. This data might show the teacher did not report any issues throughout the year, but later they claim there were many problems. Also, the teacher may have frequently reported several issues in the survey that the administration did not address. Clearly, the teacher was doing the best he/she could. Ideally, it does not have to come to either of these outcomes. Surveying and engaging teachers and staff regularly should ensure that effective learning is happening, and test scores should be a reflection of such engagement.
Supporting Teachers Emotionally and Professionally
The surveys are not only for students. Surveys addressed to teachers to find more about a student’s emotional well-being and academic performance are a great beginning. But surveys directed to teachers, to find out whether they are getting the support they need to perform well in class, or they feel well prepared to begin a new school year, are paramount to the effective learning and results that parents and school administrations want.
A Different Data Angle
Schools have a plethora of data. Testing, readiness, and classroom data is collected frequently to identify progress, provide resources to students, and improve school performance. The issues less commonly measured deal with behavior, happiness, attentiveness, and wellness of students and staff. A teacher’s survey question can be “Do you have a student who seems less happy, active, or attentive than usual?” This is a different data angle because it gets to problems behind higher performance. Teachers who are in close contact with the student are the first to notice behavioral changes in them and can promptly seek help from the administration.
Avenue to Give Feedback
What is working in your school and what areas can you improve? Surveys can be an easy way to identify your strengths and weaknesses with the teachers, students, and staff of your school. These surveys allow you to make adjustments to promote better learning, a better work environment, and a place where students and teachers feel rewarded and appreciated. The job of an administrator is to create the best environment possible for the success of teachers and students. You cannot improve what you do not measure.
Outstanda Pulse for Teacher Surveys
If you are using Outstanda Pulse, you are already surveying students to help improve your wellness efforts and increase academic performance. Included in your account is the ability to survey parents and staff as well. This added benefit to involve all responsible parties to achieve academic success and well-being of their students and teachers will provide better results and overall happiness for everyone involved.
Schools that want to improve need to have actionable data that is updated on a regular basis and allow for trend analysis. Outstanda Pulse is a systems that helps you publish surveys for teachers, and gives administrators access to valuable data that can boost school performance in many areas.