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One goal for leaders and teachers is improved student learning. To achieve improved student learning it is important to enlist the parents of our students as partners in the teaching and learning process. Student learning and parent satisfaction results are key principles making up school accountability systems.

In previous posts we highlight the use of parent satisfaction surveys as one way to gauge how satisfied parents are with their child’s school:

Parent-Teacher Communication Survey (May 16, 2012)

To be Great, Be Great in All Areas: Parent Satisfaction (April 30, 2012)

Parent Empowerment in Education (February 8, 2012)

In addition, previous blogs highlight the importance of reward and recognition for leaders and teachers, and getting students involved in building a culture of excellence and accountability for learning:

Reward and Recognition the WOWMANIA Way! (April 9, 2012)

Reward and Recognition: Get Students Involved (April 23, 2012)

We work with one of our partner districts to administer a Student Satisfaction Survey for Middle and High School students which to date includes more than 13,500 responses. Students rate the following four items highest in satisfaction on a Likert 5-point scale (Strongly Disagree (1) to Strongly Agree (5)):

1. My learning is important at my school. (4.46)

2. I have opportunities to be successful at my school. (4.27)

3. Special area classes such as art, music and P.E. add to my school experience. (4.18)

3. The principal at my school is an effective leader. (4.18)

Of course, this kind of student-teacher relationship does not automatically occur. School leaders should not accept any excuses from teachers who do not do their due diligence to connect with students. Teachers need to do particular things beginning at the start of the year to begin building a genuine relationship with students. Students come from diverse backgrounds and are not always easy to connect with. No matter the situation, each student is important and deserves an opportunity to be part of a performance-driven classroom.

Students rate the following four items lowest in satisfaction on a Likert 5-point scale:

1. I regularly receive feedback from school staff about my academic progress. (3.47)

2. I am recognized for good work and behavior at my school. (3.71)

3. My school is clean and well maintained. (3.72)

4. I would recommend my school to others. (3.81)

Teachers need to connect, listen, and respond to students. Similar to our findings from Parent Satisfaction Survey results (over 30,000 responses), the two lowest ranked items in terms of satisfaction relate to (lack of) communication between the teacher/school and the student. When teachers develop partnerships with students and parents, they engage students at the beginning of the school year, listen carefully to understand their situations and needs, and remain mindful that students need clear and consistent feedback about their academic progress.



Pilcher, J., and Largue, R. 2009. How to Lead Teachers to Become Great. Gulf Breeze, FL: Fire Starter Publishing.

Our mission at Studer Education is to provide students with a great place to learn, teachers with a great place to teach, and parents with confidence that their children are getting a great education. To do this we work with school boards, leaders, and teachers to apply Evidence-Based continuous improvement processes and the principles from How to Lead Teachers to Become Great in their districts to get the best student learning results and create results-oriented school cultures. Visit us online at http://studereducation.com. Studer Education is a division of Studer Group, a recipient of the 2010 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.