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Results will inform the development of an improved, forward-looking vision statement
The survey asked the NJASA membership to weigh-in on topics such as: the continued relevance of the Association’s 2007 Vision Statement, the knowledge and skills students will need in the future and the most important measures of public education quality, among others.
In his opening remarks, NJASA President Dr. Gary McCartney said, “As we work to improve education in our state, it is important that we speak with one voice. We will use this critical data to design a vision statement that encapsulates our long-term education goals and priorities.”
NJASA Executive Board Director Dr. Richard G. Bozza noted, “It is vital that we not only address the complex teaching and learning challenges of today, but also prepare our educational leaders for an evolving future. We will continue to be an integral part of ongoing policy conversations and debates to ensure that our members have the necessary resources and support to provide every student with a world-class education.”
The findings of the NJASA 2020 Vision Survey, designed and administered by independent technology and communication firm K12 Insight, allows NJASA to define and obtain feedback on public education in New Jersey, as well as inform the development of a consistent plan that addresses future education needs and concerns.
Overall, 223 individuals participated in the survey, with 81% identifying themselves as superintendents. Survey results indicate that respondents broadly agree about the necessary direction for New Jersey public schools.
According to the survey, respondents find many factors of the 2007 Vision Statement still relevant. In particular, 96% of respondents believe that predictable and sufficient funding remains very important, while 91% agree that providing additional learning time and accommodating different learning styles is still a significant goal. The vast majority of participants (93%) also continue to support the necessity of having appropriately designed and adequately maintained facilities.
Other findings show that 72% of respondents believe safe, orderly and supportive environments are of very high importance, while more than 80% place substantial value on attracting, developing and retaining quality teachers and principals.
Participants also offered a number of suggestions for improving education quality such as: balancing quantitative and qualitative assessment measures; broadening engagement among all stakeholders; and incorporating proven principles and benchmarks to evaluate the quality of continuing improvement efforts.
NJASA’s next steps include sharing the survey data and collaborating with the Association’s Visioning Committee to incorporate survey feedback into a 2020 Vision Statement.