The leadership team at the Dubai American Academy believes firmly that creating a data-driven culture in their school starts with modeling one themselves. Last year, administrators partnered with Panorama to ask for feedback using Panorama’s surveys about how well they are supporting their teachers and students. This year, they are asking students for feedback on their teachers, building a school-wide practice of using education data to drive reflection and improvements to school climate and culture. Matthew Wilding, Deputy Superintendent of the school, which includes a primary, elementary, middle and high school, framed their work by saying, “We try to be transparent, and really practice what we preach.”
Student surveys can be a powerful way to communicate to your students that their feedback is “valued, essential, and wanted,” believes Jay Robinson, Superintendent of Schools in Maine School Administrative District #72 (MSAD #72). For the last two years, MSAD #72 has done student surveys to better understand students’ classroom experiences and to support their district strategic plan. To learn more about how they are using their student surveys to take action and make change, Panorama spent a day with the leadership team and a number of teachers in MSAD #72.
Data can be a powerful engine to catalyze continuous school improvement. But deciding how to dig into your data– and how to organize your team to look at it– can sometimes feel overwhelming. Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS), one of the largest school districts in the United States, has partnered with Harvard’s Data Wise Project to get the most out of their data.
Panorama is proud to partner with innovative educators who are using data to create school change and improve school outcomes. As part of our ongoing commitment to sharing school survey resources about how our partners are using their data, we are excited to highlight the work of Uplift Education, a public charter network in the greater Dallas-Fort Worth area. Uplift has leveraged a culture of data-driven improvement to help teachers develop their teaching practice and measure student growth, using education data collected by Panorama and others.
For many schools and districts, teacher observations can be a source of frustration and tension. Best Foot Forward, a research project at Harvard University’s Center for Education Policy Research, is trying to change that. By using video and other tools and strategies, Best Foot Forward seeks to create collaborative school cultures about giving and receiving feedback on instructional practice without placing additional burdens on administrative or teacher time. Best Foot Forward used Panorama’s survey platform and reports to complement their work on teacher observations, and to provide a more well-rounded look at effective teaching.
Collecting student feedback brings opportunities for building relationships with students and creating classroom goals with student input. Rebecca McFall, the superintendent of Lincoln Public Schools in Lincoln, Massachusetts, published “The Benefits of Soliciting Our Students’ Feedback” in the School Superintendents’ Association (AASA)’s School Administrator. In Lincoln, student feedback has been a powerful way for teachers to connect with their students and strengthen their classroom practice.