Parents encouraged to complete accountability surveys

If you have a student in grade 4, 7 or 10 you’ve likely received a survey from the Government of Alberta. These surveys are designed to hold schools accountable for the education your child is receiving. Communications officer for Northern Lights Public Schools (NLPS), Nicole Garner explains it is very important for parents to fill out and return their surveys.

The survey makes up seven of the 14 pillars of accountability for the division. “That is what Alberta Ed requires us to put strategies to address in our Three-Year Plan,” explained Garner, “It’s another piece, along with the community engagement meetings that help us set out priorities.”

It is important for parents to fill out their surveys, stated Garner. “It’s the parents opportunity to give a report card for their school and their school division.” Alberta Education looks at the responses and lets the school divisions know how well they are doing based on results.

The more responses the better, said Garner. “When a school sits down to do a school plan and they’re looking at the results, if there’s only five parents who have returned a survey and you’re supposed to base what you’re doing at your school on these surveys, it may not be an accurate representation. So the more parents that fill it out the better idea we have on what direction we should be moving in.”

Parents of students in grades 4, 7, and 10 will have received their survey in the mail. Included is a stamped envelope to return paper responses or parents have an option to fill out the survey online. There will be a code on the top of your survey, with a website. Head to the website and enter the code to fill out an e-survey.

Schools with under 120 students, like Iron River or Ardmore, will only surveys going out to all the students in grades 4-12.

One item to note is if the question does not pertain to your child or school, do not fill out the “Don’t Know” option, advised Garner. “What happens when you check the ‘Don’t Know’ option it is a negative response.” Meaning that option is intended for parents to select if they feel the question pertains to their child or school but they have not been given enough information on it. Whereas skipping the question completely if it does not pertain to your child or school is the proper way to get an accurate result.

Surveys are due by February 22, 2019.