Results from a new survey of Ohio school students and teachers will help school districts improve their educational environments.
The Ohio Department of Education, the Pearson Foundation and the Quaglia Institute for Student Aspirations recently released a report summarizing the responses of nearly 54,000 students and approximately 2,700 teachers and other staff members.
“One of the best tools that an educator can utilize to facilitate a better learning environment is the art of listening to student and teacher feedback,” said Michael Sawyers, acting superintendent of public instruction. “Many of the challenges facing our schools happen outside of the classroom and make a huge impact on a student’s ability to learn.”
The Ohio My Voice Initiative is the largest state-led initiative to track and analyze student engagement and to highlight its connection to progress in academic performance. Made possible by a grant from the Pearson Foundation and funding from Ohio’s Race to the Top (RttT) federal grant award, My Voice eventually will engage more than one million Ohio students in grades six through 12.
The survey was completed by students in Race to the Top schools in districts across the state, including Ada Exempted Village School District, Akron Public School District, Dayton Early College Academy, Maysville Local School District, Northmont City School District and South Euclid-Lyndhurst City School District as well as other schools throughout the state.
My Voice is available at no cost to all schools in Ohio, including non-RttT schools, private and parochial schools.
My Voice helps students articulate their school- inspired sense of self-worth, engagement and purpose. The results of this initiative will provide educators and administrators with detailed student data, which will be used to improve teaching and learning.
In partnership, the Ohio Department of Education, the Pearson Foundation, and the Quaglia Institute are training Ohio educators to use the results to improve learning outcomes through a series of workshops, professional development and other supporting programs that tie to QISA’s “8 Conditions That Make a Difference” in a student’s life.
Student responses will be part of the Pearson Foundation’s Million Voice Project, the national public interest campaign intended to gauge students’ perceptions of school across the United States.
This approach to understanding school by using ‘student voice’ is part of a broadening national movement that has been supported by teacher and administrator organizations such as the American Association of School Administrators, the Council of Chief State School Officers, National Association of Secondary School Principals, National Catholic Educational Association, National Education Association and the National School Board Association.