I really enjoy reading the PDK Annual Survey about education. It is an insight survey that provides the starting point for many conversations that should be happening on a local and national level. It provides schools an opportunity to see if their perceptions about schools match the perceptions of the larger public. So often, these perceptions between community and school vary greatly causing miscommunication, a false sense of success, and the idea that your school's level of engagement is high enough. As the year progresses, I will be fortunate enough to work with the folks at PDK, and I'm excited to learn, grow, and collaborate with such an excellent organization.
This year, though, I was left wondering about what the results would have been for a few other questions. They are based on topics that many believe will form the foundation of the best innovative public schools in the country over the next twenty years. It may be time for PDK to add a set of future trends questions to their survey. Here are the questions in which I would have liked to see the results.
To what extend should schools be building the skills of sustainability in students including social justice, economic justice, and environmental justice?
To what level of satisfaction are you with the infusion of technology into the learning and understanding in schools?
To what degree do you believe that student involvement with the arts (instrumental music, vocal music, drama, and art classes) plays in their school achievement? Would you be willing to pay more taxes to provide these opportunities?
Are schools doing enough to combat the growing obesity epidemic in schools through health and physical education classes and/or providing healthy breakfast and lunch opportunities?
What is the optimal amount of per pupil spending for schools to reach our educational goals as a country?