In order to understand the Five Star community's values and priorities for investing in student success and addressing needs in facilities, overcrowding and programming, Adams 12 Five Star Schools hosted an online survey for parents and community members.
The survey was open from April 11 through April 22, 2016 and received 2,584 responses. The majority of responses were from parents within the district (80%), the majority of whom have elementary students. We also had a fair amount of participants who are employees of the district and community members.
Survey participants were asked four questions as to their values and priorities:
QUESTION 1 – Facility Needs
Participants were asked to determine level of importance when considering facility needs, ranging from extremely important to not important. They were given a list of several options such as building new schools, expanding programming, maintenance concerns, technology upgrades, safety improvements, playgrounds, etc.
QUESTION 2 – Educational Programming
Participants were asked to determine level of importance when considering educational programming needs, ranging from extremely important to not important. They were given a list of several options such as updating technology, investing in instructional materials, competing for highly-effective teachers, restoring enrichment elective classes and focusing on preventative building maintenance.
Participants were asked: What additional high-priority needs do you believe are important to invest in to support educational innovation in the Five Star District?
The following are the top three themes of responses:
- Overcrowding and Lower Class Sizes: Addressing needs for new schools based on crowded populations in schools and classrooms. 308 responses totaling 25.16% of comments.
- Increased Learning Opportunities: An increase of the variety of choices for academic and extra-curricular opportunities such as middle school sports, music, art, language, outdoor learning and gifted talented. 260 responses totaling 20.93% of comments.
- High Quality Teaching: Appreciation of high-quality teachers, desire to hire more quality teachers, the need for better teachers in the classroom and increased pay to educators. 191 responses totaling 16.63% of comments.
Other notable comment categories included investing in more innovation and technology in the classroom, the need for better special education opportunities for all student populations, and concerns over funding and budget issues.
Survey participants were asked to answer “yes” or “no” to the following question:
As we determine how to address our needs, your feedback has been extremely valuable. The information found in this survey will help the district and Board of Education determine the best next steps in solving our funding and facility concerns.
Using this survey data, as well as other polling and feedback, the Adams 12 Five Star Schools Board of Education is actively determining if, and what, an appropriate ballot initiative may be for fall 2016 to address our needs. The board will vote on placing a Bond and/or Override on the ballot in August 2016.
For further information and next steps concerning our Five Star Needs: www.adams12.org/Funding101