Parent feedback to teachers and its association to student feedback: does Johnny tell mommy?

Cantarella, Alicia
Major Professor
Richard P. Manatt
Donald G. Hackmann
Committee Member
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Curriculum and Instruction

The primary purpose of this study was to provide a discriminating, reliable, and valid method for parents to give teachers feedback. Further, this study examined how student feedback to teachers is similar and dissimilar to parent feedback. The survey was developed with assistance from a judgment panel and stakeholders committee;The opportunity sample consisted of two school systems; one in the Southwestern United States and the other located in the Northeast. Customized scan forms were created for Country Green; Knottown maintained local control electing to use general purpose bubble sheets;The K--12 parent survey was subdivided into realms (communication, classroom environment, curriculum and instruction, assessment and evaluation, and homework) through nonstatistical generalization. Each realm contained questions which were answered using a Likert-type response mode. A comments section was also included;The data from the surveys were analyzed. Student surveys were used for each grade level: K--2, 3--5, 6--8, and 9--12. Comparable items on student and parent surveys were identified and analyzed for similarities and differences. Mass authorship of the parent survey provided social validity, the Cronbach Alpha statistical test established instrument reliability, and an analysis of variance and t-tests identified significant differences;In general, the survey instruments and techniques worked well. The results of this study indicated: (1) Parents and students do not rate teachers the same in all realms. (2) Parents were most satisfied with the classroom environment realm at the K--2, 3--5, and 9--12 levels. Middle school parents were most satisfied with the communication realm. (3) All grade levels were least satisfied with the homework realm. (4) Parents were more satisfied with female teachers than male. (5) The teacher having or not having children did not impact parent ratings. (6) Although not significantly higher, teachers with four to ten years of experience were rated highest by parents followed by veteran then novice teachers. (7) Elementary level surveys had the highest return rate followed by high school then middle school. (8) Elementary (K--5) parents were the most satisfied followed by middle grades (6--8) and then high school (9--12). (9) Written comments were positive and matched the Likert-responses.