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Communication Survey Results Presented to BOE

Superintendent Victoria McLaren presented the results of the Communications Survey that was administered through Ulster BOCES and the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA) before the holidays. The results were incredibly informative, and the District was presented with a scorecard that showed Onteora’s results benchmarked against those of over 100 school districts nationwide. This data shows us key areas where we are meeting expectations and those where improvement is needed. We are now in the process of using the data to develop a strategic communications plan to help us address areas where the survey shows us we needed the most work. The survey presentation can be viewed at the 1:30 minute mark of the meeting linked here. The presentation document can be downloaded here.

Some interesting findings include that, currently, the top source of information for parents and staff is email, followed closely by word of mouth. The community currently receives most information about the District from word of mouth, followed by the news media. Coming in at the number three spot for parents and community members was social media, and for staff was the website. Since the District always strives to be the first and best source of information, the prevalence of our school communities' reliance on word of mouth for information is an interesting data point. The survey also showed us the preferred methods of communication for each audience, which allows us to develop strategies to meet audience needs.

Another interesting point was the high level of general community member participation in the survey. In developing the survey, NSPRA set specific target participation rates for achieving a desired confidence interval of the results. In total, 276 parents, 106 staff, and an impressive 106 community members completed the survey. The NSPRA facilitator remarked that it is very rare for a district to reach the target participation rate for community-at-large.