Saturday, May 21, 2016

Surveying Your School Counseling Program



There are many tasks School Counselors attempt to accomplish before the end of the school year. One of the most important of these is getting feedback from your classroom teachers.  Yes, a survey can be a scary and risky thing, however it is an excellent tool for gauging the perceptions and opinions of your faculty.  Are there surprises?  Yes.  Are there unkind comments? Sometimes. Are there totally unreasonable suggestions? A few.  But,  even this information is valuable data and allows you to address the misconceptions and misinformation that may be present among your faculty.  A survey informs you of where you need to focus your energy and in what ways you need to educate and better serve the needs of your school population.  It helps with building relationships and community and many times provides insight into some of the more perplexing responses you  may have encountered during the school year.  People appreciate an opportunity to share their thoughts in a nonthreatening format. And although there are inevitably some negative comments on every survey, the majority are supportive.

This will be the 3rd year I have used Google forms to survey my faculty about my School Counseling program.  Each year, there is some remark or score that gives me cause to stop and reflect on my current practice. And really, that is what it is all about, reflection and continually improving our program and ourselves.  Yes, surveying your faculty requires a strong sense of self and at times, a thick skin.  The programming you thought was so terrific, may not have been as well received by your faculty as you thought.  The classroom lessons you did may not have been as effective and  your response time to a teacher request may not have been as prompt as you thought.

I learned last year, teacher perceptions of district mandated procedures for handling bullying were thought to be my procedures and there was a lot of resentment about how was bullying was handled. I would have never known this without giving my teachers the survey.  I also learned I made erroneous assumptions about my faculty understanding of the role of the School Counselor.  With about 10 faculty new to our school, it turned out there was quite a bit of confusion about the role of the School Counselor on our campus.  This was reflected in the ratings by my faculty across the survey.  All good information for how I needed to educate my faculty.

Surveying your faculty is easy and non-threatening when using Google forms.  You simply copy and paste the survey link in an email to your faculty, allowing them to anonymously provide you with feedback on your program.   I know it is a scary thing to do, but the data you will receive is important for your personal and professional growth and the growth of your School Counseling program.

Copying the  Google Form
Click here to view my Teacher Survey of the School Counseling Program .  The questions are a compilation of questions from a variety of forms I found on-line and in an old paper file I had of teacher surveys.  Please remember, this is a live Google form, so you must make a copy before using this form or making any changes.   To make a copy, first you must have a gmail account.  Next, you click on  the 3 vertical dots in the  top corner to the right of the send button. There you will see "Make a copy,"  click on that.  Next you will be asked to  name your copy and click ok.  Your copy of my form will now be on your Google drive under whatever you  have named it.  After making your own copy, the form is yours  o edit  to fit the needs of your school.

Emailing the Google Form
To copy the link to an email, click the "send" button in the upper right hand corner of the form. You will see 3 icons, choose the middle icon that looks like 2 ovals linked together. That will provide you with the link to copy and include in your email.  When your faculty clicks on the link it will take them directly to your survey.  You will be able to view your results in your Google drive by clicking on the response sheet created automatically and named the same as your survey.


Good luck!  Surveying my teachers is one of the best things I have done to improve my services to my students and faculty.  I hope you will find this to be true for you as well.