Wednesday, April 7, 2010

National School Climate Survey

I received the email below in my inbox today. It is interesting timing as I remember Obama and Arne Duncan speaking recently of realigning No Child Left Behind to include the measurement of school "climate" as part of the grading process. I will admit right off the bat that I am at a loss for what the term "climate" means in this sense. I am working on getting to the bottom of it.

I invite you to help me get a handle on this climate survey that comes around every two years. School climate could be interpreted many ways (including literally) and I would like to figure out exactly what the Department of Education is up to. I have found some links but am reluctant to come to an immediate conclusion as to what this means. Let me know what you find out.




April 6, 2010

Dear NSBA National Affiliate School Board Members and Superintendents:

I am writing to ask for your school district’s participation in the National School Climate Survey 2010. This study, planned to be the largest in the history of public education, will solicit responses and reactions from teachers, students, administrators and parents from urban, suburban and rural schools throughout the United States. In January, the National School Boards Association’s (NSBA) Board of Directors endorsed this study and agreed to provide support in the recruitment process. You may recall the series of studies that I conducted on urban school climate in conjunction with the NSBA’s Council of Urban Boards of Education a few years ago. These groundbreaking studies received incredible coverage from the national news media and have been well-received in academic and practitioner circles since publication. We learned a great deal about perceptions of urban schools and continue to process that data even to this day.

The new study, combined with Census data collected this year, promises to provide even more insight on the day to day lives and perceptions held by those closest to the education process. This time, I am soliciting the views and perceptions of the entire spectrum of schools and individuals represented in the American education system. Views on safety, respect, bullying and parental involvement are just a few that will be investigated in this study. The impact of school climate on student achievement is quickly being recognized as an important dimension to consider when designing programs aimed to improved student outcomes.

We need you and your district to participate this year. We are recruiting districts from all fifty states between now and September 1. There is no cost to your district. For each school that participates, the school board will receive a brief report with the school-level results that will assist in your policy decisions regarding the improvement of school climate. The survey takes less than 10 minutes to administer and is done completely online with exception of the parental surveys. We plan to have well over 100,000 respondents to this truly historic survey and hope that your state will be included in that number.

If you are interested in participating and for more information, please feel free to email or call at or 203.660.8406.


Brian K. Perkins, Ed. D.
Principal Investigator
National School Climate Survey 2010

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