Wednesday, August 20, 2014
OKLAHOMA CITY, Aug. 20, 2014 – During the Chamber’s annual State of the Schools luncheon today, the results of a community wide survey of Oklahoma City Public School patrons were released.
Earlier this year, the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber and nine community partners invited Oklahoma City School District parents and employees, business owners and the community-at-large to take part in a survey to gain insight into perceptions about the district’s performance and direction. The survey was launched in late March and conducted by Reliant, an independent marketing research firm, and was met with overwhelming response. The original goal was to reach 4,200 responses and more than 5,200 were received.
The survey segmented patrons in three categories: parents, employees and community. The results showed that parents and employees have much higher levels of satisfaction and perception of performance compared with the perceptions of the community group (business owners and the community-at-large). Respondents at all levels indicated a low level of general satisfaction with the district and its leadership, yet rankings for the district’s performance in specific areas such as teacher effectiveness, safety, and facilities and resources were significantly higher.
Among parents, they ranked the district highest for the communication they receive from the district, for the way the schools keep them informed about academic progress and the encouragement they are given to volunteer. Their lowest rankings include the availability of parent education, the presence of gang activity and the way the district manages budget and finances.
School safety was the biggest issue of concern for employees of the district – but employees have confidence in the ability of the district to keep students safe. Bullying, bus transportation and gang activity pose the largest overall safety concerns of employees.
“This survey has provided valuable insight to the district about the perceptions of its parents, employees and the community,” explained Teresa Rose, Chesapeake Energy and vice chair – education and workforce development, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber. “It is clear from these results that the community expects more from the district, but it is also clear that the more people are engaged with the district and are knowledgeable about its work, the more positive their perceptions. The partners involved in this project are committed to working with the district and to using this survey as a baseline measurement in the work to improve performance and rebuild the community’s belief in our schools.”
Rose went on to applaud the district’s new superintendent, along with the School Board for their willingness to work with the Chamber and its partners going forward. “We have an opportunity to come together and further the community conversation about how we can improve education in our schools. The task is challenging, but the reward would be so great,” she concluded.
In addition to the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber, community partners include the City of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma City American Federation of Teachers, The Foundation for Oklahoma City Public Schools, Urban League of Greater Oklahoma City, United Way of Central Oklahoma, Greater Oklahoma City Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Latino Community Development Agency (LCDA), Stand for Children and Metro Technology Centers.