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Parent-Teacher Interviews – Survey findings

In recent weeks, we asked parents to complete a survey to gather feedback about the change of format and general quality of the recent parent-teacher interviews. As you would be aware, we were required to pivot as a school community to use Zoom as the platform for our interviews, due to the current lockdown restrictions. In developing the survey, we were interested in gathering insights from families to refine and improve the experience if we could not invite parents back on campus for the next round of interviews. More broadly, we were also interested in exploring the possibilities for the future integration of the format into our overall approach for reporting to parents.

In terms of general feedback, many parents were grateful that the school could provide an alternative solution and felt that the interviews supported relaxed, focused engagement. A small group of parents indicated that they missed the in-person contact afforded by face-to-face interviews, with a larger group suggesting the school explore the use of both online and onsite opportunities in the future. In terms of feedback on the Zoom format, many parents commented that the approach was convenient and efficient, eliminating travel time and maximising their time with teachers. A small number of parents stated that their interviews were impacted by their poor or variable internet connection issues. Please see the graphs accompanying this article for some further insight into our survey findings.

In reviewing the survey feedback, it was also interesting to note comments from parents who missed the community interaction promoted by onsite interviews. In contrast, others indicated that they would prefer to have ongoing online access to information about their child’s learning progress. In terms of the next steps, there is plenty of evidence to suggest that the school should explore more comprehensive reform of its approach to reporting, with a mix of interviews, written reports, student expos, and continuous online access to information about learning progress. For this reason, the school will be conducting a series of surveys with parents, students, and teachers later in the year, as part of a wider review in this area, so please look out for further opportunities for input via email/newsletters. Finally, several parents have stated that they appreciated being asked about their experience of the interviews. So, on behalf of the school, I would also like to thank everyone who took the time to complete the survey and share their thoughts.

DR. RICHARD OWENS
Director of Learning, Strategy and Innovation