Dear Shrewsbury Families,
Our district continues to work on our core value of equity and our strategic priorities of developing “learning environments where everyone’s success matters” and promoting the “enhanced well-being of all.” As recently reported to the School Committee, it is important to hear the voices of students and families with regard to how they perceive our school environments as far as social emotional learning (SEL) and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). To accomplish this, our school district is working with Panorama, a company based in Massachusetts with a national scope that specializes in research-based school surveys.
Sometime during the last week of school, students in Grades 3 and up will take a social emotional learning survey, and students in Grades 5 and up will also take a survey regarding equity and inclusion. These surveys are brief (10-15 minutes total) and are nationally normed so that we can compare our students' perceptions with those of students across the country.
Why Panorama? We piloted Panorama’s SEL survey tool in 2017 at Shrewsbury High School and Floral Street. Both Coolidge Elementary and Floral Street School evaluated the SEL tool and the company’s Student Success software in 2018 as part of a district effort to connect student performance on academics with information about social emotional learning. We are grateful to the school psychologists, adjustment counselors, classroom teachers and other school leaders for their help in identifying which questions were most effective in eliciting valuable feedback from students.
On that note, it’s important that parents understand that while we will not be able to see an individual student’s answers to each survey question, the survey is not anonymous. Rather, an overall score for each set of topic questions (like Social Awareness, for example) shows how students perceive themselves in that area. While the primary purpose of the survey is to get a sense of our overall student population’s perceptions, individual student survey results may be used in combination with other information (such as academic, social skills, and/or work habits grades) when considering how to support specific students.
If you are interested in the content of the surveys, you can find information at the links below. Our students will be given only the survey items related to the following topics:
|Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Topics||
Equity & Inclusion Topics
For Grades 3 -12
For Grades 5-12 only
|Social Awareness||Cultural Awareness & Action|
|Self Efficacy||Sense of Belonging|
Soon, we will be sending a companion survey out to families, and we ask that you take the time to provide us with feedback as well. We see the two surveys as opportunities to learn about our students’ collective sense of social skills and confidence at school and perceptions of their school experience. We will use this information to consider how we may create more welcoming and supportive school environments.
Finally, both surveys are optional. If, after reviewing the survey questions, you would like to opt your child out of taking the survey please email your name and your child’s full name and school to this address: email@example.com by 2 pm on Friday, June 11th. If you have additional questions about the Panorama student survey, please contact me at the email address below.
Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction, & Assessment