Amanda Richards, Possip’s Reporting Team Lead, analyzed data from our Pulse Checks! The results were able to provide us with the top 10 family trends from this past September!
October is here! With a new month comes new weather, new opportunities, and a new Possip trends blog! We are excited to share our monthly trends and insights from Possip families over the month of September.
This data represents comments from over 91,000 people who shared through Possip™ over the past month. On average, 82% of families said they were happy with their child’s school this past month.
Before we dig into the top trends this month, what are some key takeaways we noticed:
- Academics continues to be the top focus! This was a highlight in our back-to-school trends blog. Families are still wanting to know about academic support opportunities and stay close to their child’s learning.
- Safety is top of mind! Families are continuing to push for more safety and security on campus.
- Carline is still a big point of feedback, but not as big of a topic as in past years this time of years. School communities still have carline as a top 10 trend. However, it’s lower in the trends line-up than in past years.
Here are the top 10 feedback trends parents and families shared over the past 6 weeks.
#1: Academic Support
The main topics families are discussing include requests for tutoring options and more interventions to push student learning. In addition, they want more rigorous school work and certainty that students will be ready for the next school year academically. Families also shared a desire for teachers to be more communicative and proactive with families. Especially when students fall behind or need academic support.
#2: Teacher Feedback
Families discussed having more highly-qualified teachers on campus. Also, they want staff to have positive attitudes towards students and families and more training to teachers. We also heard that families want more consistent teaching and consistent full-time teachers, not substitutes, in classrooms. This is a newer trend this year as compared to prior years. This makes sense given conversations about teacher burnout and teacher shortages.
#3: Curriculum Feedback
Some trends we noticed include wanting professionally written curriculum for students and more engaging curriculum. In addition, they want an increased parent voice and involvement in the curriculum choices. Also, they want higher quality curriculum and learning standards. Families want access to all class syllabi and asked questions about how they can access the curriculum. In addition, families shared more specific requests like less screen time, more electives, and more textbook usage.
#4: Campus Security
We also heard that families are concerned about fights on campus. So, they want more staff in certain areas to prevent that from happening. In addition, families asked many questions about safety practices on campus. They also advocated for more safety procedures like backpack checks and metal detectors as prevention methods.
#5: Transportation Needs
We heard that the bus schedules are not consistent or reliable. For example, buses come too early or too late. Families are advocating for these issues to be resolved as soon as possible. We also heard that families want to contact the transportation services directly, but are having difficulty doing so. Additionally, in some of our attendance work with our partners, transportation barriers are a top driver of attendance challenges for families.
#6: Carline Logistics
Families are mostly worried about the safety of their students and pedestrians during carline, asking for more detailed plans for traffic control, and a desire to uphold the carline rules for all families since some cars are skipping or going on their own drop-off path.
#7: Teacher Communication
We heard that families are craving a consistent way to stay in contact with the teacher and gave ideas like using daily planners, take-home folders, or updating tech platforms consistently. Teachers gave praise to some teacher’s communication styles, but the inconsistency from classroom to classroom was a point of feedback. Families are wanting to clearly understand teacher expectations for their students better, both academically and behaviorally, and they are asking for more communication to help them stay in touch and feel connected.
#8: Extracurricular Activities
Families also asked for more information on how to get their students involved in current club offerings and want to know all the opportunities that exist. They shared feedback about communication from coaches not being effective and needing more information on how to sign up for extracurriculars and the dates of events proactively. Families discussed the desire for these clubs and extracurricular opportunities as a needed social outlet for their students.
#9: Homework Assignments
Generally, we found that families are asking for less homework for their students this year. Although we did hear some families ask for more homework, the majority of families feel their students are overloaded with work at night and weekends. Parents also asked for homework to be in textbooks or be given examples so they can help their student make meaning of it at home. We also heard that families want more clarity on homework assignment expectations, and how students can get support with homework if they are struggling. It has been a few years since homework was a big topic for families – but we have some resources that may help school leaders or families navigate homework: https://possip.com/category/homework/
#10: School Communication Tools
The last trend in the top 10 this month is around feedback with communication tech tools like apps and communication platforms. Specifically, we heard that translation tools are not working well to reach all families, messages on apps are not being responded to, and there are too many apps for families to keep track of. Families want things streamlined into one platform and want to know who to go to for support if they are having tech troubles. We also heard that social media communication is not effective for all families and some are feeling left out of the loop if they are not on social media.
Possip shares these trends in the hopes that they help you have the tools, information, and ideas to support your students, families, staff and school. We love being a partner – so just complete the form below to chat more!