December 14, 2018

Survey Guidelines


DATE: 01-09-2013

Guidelines for Professional Development and Evaluation Surveys


In general:

  • Each educator in Plan II must conduct a survey in years 3 and 6.

  • All surveys must be approved by your building administrator before they are distributed.

  • The purpose of the survey is for the educator to get feedback from colleagues, parents, and/or students in an area of the educator’s choosing and to reflect on the results. Create your survey to give information that is most interesting and useful to you.

  • Start creating your survey as early as possible. The entire process should take 4 to 5 hours from start to finish. If you find it is taking longer, seek assistance from your administrator.

  • This may be an opportunity to address a teaching competency for the re-licensing portfolio that you have not done. Think about this when you do your yearly self-evaluation on the competency checklist. (Remember all five competencies must be addressed by the end of each seven-year relicensing cycle.)

Stage I: Choosing your Focus and Respondents (approximately 1/2 hour)

  • Surveys should be focused and narrow in scope. It is important to decide what information you are seeking and carefully select your questions. Only ask questions you genuinely want answers to. The first two stages of the process are likely to take the most time.

  • Survey questions may be linked to the goals of your professional growth plan (PGP) but do not have to be. You could be working on improving student learning in math or school climate in your professional growth plan, but focus your survey on collaboration or home-school communication.

  • You may survey current or past parents, students or colleagues. You must survey at least one group but can do more than one group if desired. You may survey community members as an optional group.

  • In order to gather sufficient information from students or parents, the total number of surveys sent should equal an average class size in your building. Educators who work with large numbers of students (e.g., art, P.E., nurses, guidance etc.) are also required to send surveys equal to the average class size in their building. Average class sizes are available on school websites.

Stage II: Creating the Survey and Choosing the Format (approximately 1 hour)

  • Begin your survey with a short blurb explaining the purpose and use of the survey.

  • Use a limited number and variety of questions. Try to keep your survey to 10 questions or less.


  • Consider using alternate response formats for K-3 children (i.e. holding up a red or green card for yes/no answers, using    instead of numbers etc…).For older students, you can include multiple choice; Likert scales (1-4 number scales); frequency scales(usually, sometimes, never); short answer; open-ended; or yes/no questions. You may also want to include a “not able to judge” option on your scale for older students or parents.

  • Sample questions for K-3, 4-6, and 7-12 are provided. If you write your own, or have a creative response format, please consider adding to our database so that we can build resources over time.

  • It should not take more than 10 minutes for your respondents to complete a survey.

  • You may use a paper and pencil survey, or create an online survey which will collate the results for you. Web tools such as Survey Monkey or the district’s website survey tool are readily available and easy to use. A technology coordinator can help with this.

Stage III: Disseminating and Collecting the Surveys (approximately 1 hour)

  • Remember to have your building administrator review your survey before disseminating it.

  • You should be able to get most student surveys back and aim for 50% of parent and colleague surveys.

  • To increase the number of responses from parents returned consider the following:

  • Homework grade for middle and secondary students (parents who do not want to fill it out sign it that they saw it)
  • Hand surveys out at parent teacher conferences or open houses
  • One-night homework pass if student returns the parent’s survey
  • Classroom reward for a certain percentage coming back
  • When parents come in for a parent teacher conference, have them fill out a survey on a computer in the lab
  • Put your survey on your teacher website

Stage IV: Analyzing/ Summarizing the Results (approximately 1 hour)

  • Once the surveys are returned, collate the data (web tools will do this automatically). Broadly categorize the short or open-ended responses (positive/negative for example). Attach this summary to your original surveys if you used paper responses.

  • Write a short reflection on your results. What did you discover? Will you do anything differently? Were you surprised by any responses?

  • Share survey results with building administrator at pre or post observation conference.

  • Add the surveys, results, and reflections to your portfolio under the appropriate competency.

Link to Google Doc of Survey Guidelines