Since 2012, MPS has used a standard districtwide student survey to help capture key dimensions of classroom life and teaching practice as students experience them. Surveys provide data that can drive reflection, professional development and growth at the teacher and school level.
View the surveys:
Teacher Engagement and Survey Improvement Efforts
The student survey process that MPS undertook always incorporated an engagement strategy to gather teacher feedback after the survey was given to students. MPS initally surveyed students in the winter of 2012-13 and provided the classroom-level reports directly to teachers only. Administrators had access to school-level student survey results.
Teacher feedback was gathered in the spring of 2013 and involved both surveys and visits to schools. Based on the initial round of feedback, MPS made changes for the 2013-14 survey. The changes included: Reducing survey length by almost half at each grade band, removing all demographic questions (about family, home life, etc.), removing negatively worded questions, removing other questions that teachers flagged as problematic and giving teachers more flexibility in survey administration.
MPS sent the revised surveys to approximately 100 randomly-selected teachers for additional feedback. We also had survey items revised and vetted by the Teacher Evaluation Advisory Group, a group of approximately 30 MPS teachers, and approved by the Peer Assistance and Review (PAR) Committee, a group of teachers, principals, Minneapolis Federation of Teachers leadership, and district administrators.
Teacher Pay and Evaluations
Evaluations are not tied to pay and teacher salaries cannot be changed except through the standard negotiations process between MPS and the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers.
Ultimately, MPS feels it is important to understand that the student survey is one of multiple measures that make up the MPS teacher evaluation system. The other two measures are observations and student learning measures. The multiple measures system rests on the idea that teaching is complex and that no single measure can capture the spectrum of a teacher’s work.