How is it defined?
Educational environments are varied and include not only the physical spaces of a given institution, but also the contexts for learning within the school (Kachchhap & Horo, 2021). School environment plays an important role in ensuring a positive school climate, alongside considerations for school safety, the relationships between individuals within the school, and the teaching and learning that takes place (Cohen et al., 2009). Well-being among teachers is heavily related to the school’s environment and the encouragement of positive collaboration among staff (Yildirim, 2014). School leaders must make a positive work environment a priority, as enthusiastic and engaged teachers are critical to the success of their students (Ansley et al., 2019).
The Learning Bar's Staff Survey framework is based on 13 core indicators designed to capture the key metrics of employee health and well-being. Together, these indicators support the development of a positive school climate.
Why is it important?
- The stress levels, job satisfaction and self-efficacy of teachers are influenced by their perceptions of the school environment (Collie et al., 2012).
- A positive school climate is associated with school success, student achievement and teacher retention (Cohen et al., 2009).
- The elements of a supportive professional environment that have the greatest impact on teacher effectiveness include meaningful feedback, peer collaboration, and a school culture characterized by trust and respect (Kraft & Papay, 2014).
How do we measure it?
The OurSCHOOL Staff Survey includes five items related to a school environment characterized by care, collaboration and innovation. The results are reported as “the percentage of staff with a positive school environment.”
Ansley, B. M., Houchins, D., & Varjas, K. (2019). Cultivating positive work contexts that promote teacher job satisfaction and retention in high-need schools. Journal of Special Education Leadership, 32(1), 3-16.
Cohen, J., McCabe, E. M., Michelli, N. M., & Pickeral, T. (2009). School climate: Research, policy, practice, and teacher education. Teachers College Record, 111(1), 180-213.
Collie, R. J., Shapka, J. D., & Perry, N. E. (2012). School climate and social-emotional learning: Predicting teacher stress, job satisfaction, and teaching efficacy. Journal of Educational Psychology, 104(4), 1189-1204.
Kachchhap, S. L., & Horo, W. (2021). Factors Influencing school teachers' sense of belonging: An empirical evidence. International Journal of Instruction, 14(4), 775-790.
Kraft, M. A., & Papay, J. P. (2014). Can professional environments in schools promote teacher development? Explaining heterogeneity in returns to teaching experience. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 36(4), 476-500.
Yildirim, K. (2014). Main factors of teachers professional well-being. Educational Research and Reviews, 9(6), 153-163.