Noblesville Schools wants to know what the community – regardless of if they have students in the district – thinks of the schools.
The district launched a survey on Monday for all Noblesville residents, and it is open until May 13.
While the school district recently asked for feedback regarding the qualities of the next superintendent, this survey is more comprehensive and detailed, said spokesperson Marnie Cooke.
Plus, it was in the works before current Superintendent Beth Niedermeyer announced she was retiring in June, Cooke said. It’s a follow-up to a similar survey the district did in 2015.
At that time, the plan was to do the survey every five years, but when the COVID-19 pandemic started in 2020, the survey was set aside, but now it’s back on the radar, Cooke said.
Give Noblesville Schools a grade
The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete, a news release stated.
Participants are asked to grade the schools overall as well as in a variety of areas including leadership, safety, innovation and responsiveness to the community.
Other questions address topics including transportation, technology, spending, class sizes, teacher pay, standardized testing, public school funding, and how people get their news and information about the district. The survey also has a list of questions about referendums and how willing participants would be to vote for one and for what needs.
Cooke said the questions are about 90% the same from 2015, but some have changed. New questions are about school safety after the 2018 shooting at Noblesville West Middle School, mental health and if students feel welcome and supported.
The district hired Practical Insights and Schlesinger Group to administer the survey, which keeps respondents’ confidential. The companies also did the 2015 survey.
Cooke said the cost is $14,000, and a large portion of the cost was for printing and postage for the postcards that will be sent to community members about the survey.
Applying the survey responses
The results of the survey will be used both at the central administration and campus levels to make decisions in a variety of areas such as how to best communicate with the community and when it might be time to build new schools and more.
Since the last survey was in 2015 and Niedermeyer started in 2014, the survey compared to the 2015 survey will measure of community perspective of her tenure. Plus, it will be an entry point for the next district leader, Cooke said.
The Noblesville School Board plans to hire a new superintendent in May and applications closed last week.
The school board will meet with University Search Team on Wednesday to start reviewing applications, board president Joe Forgey has said.
Terry McDaniel, an Indiana State professor on the search team, said Monday there is “a strong pool of highly qualified applicants” but didn’t give more details. Much of the hiring process is done behind closed doors, as allowed by law.
Cooke said the plan is for the survey to continue to be every five years so the schools can collect feedback and make comparisons. The district plans to publicly share a summary of the results in the summer.
To fill out the survey, go to: nobsurvey.com.
Call IndyStar education reporter MJ Slaby at 317-447-1586 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter: @mjslaby.