There are several reasons why collecting student voice every year, as opposed to every 2 or 3 years, can benefit your overall student community. Look below to see how surveying annually can help improve your school community.
Surveying annually ensures you have the data you need to:
- Assess the impact of your interventions or initiatives in a more timely manner
- Are they having the intended impact? Do you need to adjust course?
- Support data-informed decision-making.
- Support your continuous improvement planning. Are you reaching your targets? Are you on track?
- Provide students with an opportunity to voice their thoughts, feelings, and concerns.
- Engage your school community (e.g., Parents, Teachers, Students) which can increase engagement and perceptions of feeling valued.
- Students, parents, and teachers come to expect and look forward to the survey each year to share their thoughts.
- Track cohorts of students
- Are there trends with specific grades that exist from year to year? (e.g., grade 9 students consistently reporting lower levels of Sense of Belonging)
- Are there trends with specific cohorts that follow from one grade to the next? (e.g., higher levels of bullying for grade 5 boys that result in higher levels of bullying for grade 6 boys)
- Keep momentum in terms of effort directed towards reaching your school or division goals.
- Assess the impact of events unique to your context or region.
- Set targets and track progress against those benchmarks.
A survey gap of more than a year can make it more difficult to interpret your data, as the number of potential influences greatly increases. For example, if your results improved, was it truly the result of your intervention, or did something else occur during the last 2 years that influenced the results. A gap will also delay your ability to modify or assess the impact of your interventions and initiatives, and can cause issues that require immediate attention to be missed (e.g., a spike in anxiety rates in your female students).