Teacher survey shows areas of progress, challenge for Oregon public schools

Salem – Oregon educators are seeing improvements in their access to technology and professional learning, but face increasing challenges with policies involving managing student conduct, according to results of the latest Teaching, Empowering, Leading, and Learning (TELL) Survey, released today.

The TELL survey is conducted every two years in Oregon and provides an opportunity for teachers and administrators to share perceptions about teaching and learning conditions at Oregon’s public schools. A record number of educators – 19,556 – took the 2018 Oregon TELL Survey.

“Educator voice and leadership are critical to improving student outcomes in schools throughout Oregon,” said Governor Kate Brown. “This data will help guide efforts to ensure all teachers are supported and the have resources they need to best serve our students.”

New national research shows that many of the conditions measured in the TELL Survey are directly connected to student achievement. An analysis of TELL data from several states (including Oregon) by Dr. Richard Ingersoll of the University of Pennsylvania found that students in schools with higher levels of school leadership and teacher leadership perform at least 10 percentage points higher in both mathematics and English language arts proficiency on their state assessments.

The Governor’s Office, Chief Education Office and Department of Education partner with the Confederation of School Administrators, Oregon Education Association, Oregon School Boards Association, Oregon Education Services Districts Association, Chalkboard Project and New Teacher Center to administer the survey.

The TELL Survey gathers input from educators in eight categories. The category that saw the most improvement from 2016 to 2018 is facilities and resources. Educators reported progress in their access to technology, reliable Internet connections and instructional materials. Educators also reported slight improvements in the amount of time available to collaborate with colleagues, resources available for professional development, and efforts to minimize routine paperwork.

The category that saw the biggest decline was managing student conduct. For example, the percentage of teachers who feel the school environment is safe declined, from 89 percent in 2016 to 82 percent in 2018. This is particularly important because the national research mentioned above found that teachers’ involvement in creating policies on student discipline leads to better student achievement.

The survey results will help drive state policies and investments, particularly through the new Educator Advancement Council, which launched this spring. The Council will establish a system of local educator networks to prioritize and expand educators’ access to professional learning and support services.

Survey results are available at the state, district and school level.

“We’re excited to have the TELL Survey data,” said John Larson, High School English Teacher from Hermiston and President of the Oregon Education Association. “This data provides important points of information for educators in districts across the state to work together to improve teaching and learning conditions in their own communities. We look forward to utilizing this knowledge to ensure that every student, regardless of their ZIP code, has access to quality learning conditions.”

TELL results suggest more schools are using the data to make improvements. In the 2018 survey, 70 percent of educators agreed with the statement: “In this school, we use the results of the TELL Oregon survey for school improvement planning.” That is a significant improvement from 57 percent in 2016.

“The TELL Survey results provide helpful feedback to school leaders and an opportunity to work with educators to make improvements in Oregon schools,” said Craig Hawkins, Executive Director of the Confederation of School Administrators. “We are pleased to see that schools are using this data as they work to improve programs and practices.”

For more information on school, district, and state-level results, visit http://www.telloregon.org/.

Comments are closed.