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End of year feedback: How does your school do it?

(4 Posts)
cloudedhoney Wed 23-Jul-14 10:36:07

My DCs primary school has an annual survey at the end of the Summer term. As it's the only time they ask for general feedback, I think a lot of parents store up their angst for that time, or else ignore it completely as they're getting ready to go on holiday.

The school is always experimenting with different ways of maximising the number of responses, and in particular the positive responses. They've tried online anonymous surveys, which got good participation, but (I suspect) brought out too much unrestrained criticism.

Now they've back to a paper based form, which you're meant to put your name on (colour coded by year group, as presumably they know many won't - I can imagine them examining handwriting to work out who said what!). The instructions are to hand the completed form to class teachers (many will go in anonymously via the office instead). As well as the usual carefully worded agree/disagree multi choice questions, there are just 3 small comment boxes - the first for positive stuff, the second for "one thing they can improve on", and the third for comments from the child.

If I sound cynical, it's because I am. It's a "Good" school which has its head in the sand about what it needs to do to become Outstanding, and knows it has a vocal set of parents with lots of ideas they don't necessarily like.

I'd be interested in whether other schools are similarly defensive. I imagine there are many that embrace parental feedback, but I suspect they will be the Outstanding ones.

SapphireMoon Wed 23-Jul-14 20:45:34

I don't think 'outstanding' necessarily means, meaningful parental communication or acting on what parents ask for.
Does your school have a Parent Council or Forum?
Does it ask opinions to tick an Ofsted box rather than really wanting to listen to what parents say or act upon what they say!

EndOfPrimary Wed 23-Jul-14 21:10:57

My primary has computer surveys which aren't anonymous and only have multi choice questions - no comments section.

Then they can boast to governors that 98% of parents are happy.

MilkRunningOutAgain Fri 25-Jul-14 13:13:12

We have a comments box, anonymous it isn't, you have to go into the school office to drop a slip of paper in. Once a year parents get questionnaires, multi choice questions and a box for general comments, they ask for your name. I'm quite happy for it not to be anonymous, if I feel strongly enough to make a comment, I'm quite happy to own up to my opinion. Tbh I think the system is OK. The school tries hard, though frequently takes odd decisions, but then again, that is just my view.

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