From the very beginning, we knew people’s perceptions were important. We also believe that what gets measured gets done.
Thus, the name.
But why is gathering, organizing, and making sense of perceptions data essential?
First, let's ask Mr. Webster. The word “perception” leads us to other words like “observation” and “opinion.” Those definitions include:
a view, judgment, or appraisal formed in the mind about a particular matter
a belief stronger than impression and less strong than positive knowledge
a formal expression of judgment or advice
For another point of view, we asked ChatGPT why gathering school perceptions data is important:
Gathering perception data in a school can provide valuable insights into various aspects of the school environment, including student and teacher experiences, attitudes, and beliefs. This information can be used to identify areas that need improvement, develop effective policies and strategies, and make evidence-based decisions to enhance the overall educational experience.
For example, gathering perception data from students can help school administrators and teachers understand how students perceive their learning environment, the quality of instruction, and the support available to them. This information can be used to identify areas where students need additional support, develop targeted interventions, and improve teaching and learning strategies.
Similarly, gathering perception data from teachers can provide insights into their experiences and perceptions of the school environment, including issues related to workload, professional development, and collaboration. This information can be used to develop policies and programs that support teacher well-being, improve professional development opportunities, and enhance collaboration among staff.
Overall, gathering perception data in a school is important because it can help schools make evidence-based decisions, identify areas for improvement, and create a positive and supportive learning environment for all stakeholders.
Not bad for a computer.
Most schools are very good at measuring academic performance. Measuring learning is obviously important to understand what students know because of instruction. At the same time, understanding a school’s climate and culture (and quantifying the barriers to learning) is also critical.
Those answers live in people’s perceptions and can be quantified.
Remember, you can only solve a problem once you identify it.
The School Perceptions Blog and Resource Center features the voices of our team members. This post was written by Bill Foster, President & Founder.