Teachers: BMS meets more needs

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second of three stories looking at the results released by TELL Colorado, which surveys teachers in Colorado every two years on specific teaching/preparation conditions at their schools. This week we will look at Meeker’s Barone Middle School. Next week, we will examine the results from Meeker Elementary School teachers. All results are taken from the surveys turned in by certified teachers only. Complete results for all three schools are available online at www.tellcolorado.org /results There are hundreds of questions in the surveys; what follows is only a sample.

MEEKER I Teachers at Barone Middle School are considerably happier with conditions at that school than teachers were in last week’s look at Meeker High School. In fact, Barone (BMS) teachers were happier with teaching, preparation and discipline issues at the school than at many Colorado middle schools represented in the 2013 TELL Colorado survey.
The Teaching, Empowering, Leading and Learning (TELL) Colorado survey is an anonymous statewide survey of licensed, school-based educators regarding teaching, preparation and discipline conditions at their school.
Results are intended to support school and district improvement planning and to assist with policy decisions. The 2013 TELL Colorado survey was administered Feb. 6 to March 11. More than half the results from BMS instructors rated conditions at the school about the same or better than average compared to all middle schools in Colorado. The 2013 figures are also split between rising above and falling below the teacher’s survey figures from 2011 results, which are also available as part of the survey.
There are three survey results for each school: site summary comparison (five printed pages); district summary results (six printed pages); and district detailed results (49 printed pages). For full results, visit www.tellcolorado.org/results.
The BMS results are based on 11 teachers surveyed and nine of those surveys returned, for an 81.82 percent participation rate. The percentage of surveys returned from Meeker High School was 82.35 percent while 95 percent of the teachers at Meeker Elementary School returned the surveys.
The most telling result regarding BMS may come with the last question of the survey. It asks the teachers how strongly they agree with the statement: “Overall, my school is a good place to work and learn:” 80.10 percent of state middle school teachers agreed in the 2013 survey; it was 88.9 percent agreement at Barone — compared to 57.1 percent of the teachers at Meeker High School
There were positive and negative results evident throughout the survey, but a look at some of the key questions posed in the district summary identify what percent of teachers are happy and what percent believes there is need for improvement:
Teachers have reasonable class sizes: 53.2 percent of Colorado middle school teachers agreed; 33.3 percent of BMS teachers agreed.
Teachers are protected from duties that interfere with their essential role of educating students: 63 percent of state middle school teachers agree; 22.2 percent agree at BMS.
Teachers have time available to collaborate with colleagues: 65.3 percent of state middle school teachers agree; 66.7 percent agree at BMS.
The community we serve is supportive of this school: 78.6 percent of state middle school teachers agree; 88.9 percent agree at BMS.
This school does a good job of encouraging parent/guardian involvement: 79 percent of state middle school teachers agree; 66.7 percent at BMS.
Community members support teachers, contributing to their success with students: 68.3 percent statewide; 88.9 percent agree at BMS.
At this school, the teachers take steps to solve problems: 79 percent statewide; 100 percent at BMS.
The faculty works in a school environment that is safe: 90.6 percent statewide agree; 100 percent agree at BMS (all of Meeker School District RE-1 agrees at a rate of 95.5 percent).
When it comes to the topics of “Managing Student Conduct” and “Teacher Leadership,” Barone surpasses state middle schools in most categories.
A sample of the results:
Teachers consistently enforce rules for student conduct: 72 percent of state middle school teachers agree; it is 77.8 percent at BMS.
Policies and procedures about student conduct are clearly understood by the faculty: 75.2 percent agree statewide; 77.8 percent at BMS.
Administration consistently enforces rules for student conduct: 62.8 percent agree statewide; 66.7 percent agree at BMS.
The administration supports teachers’ efforts to maintain discipline in the classroom: 74.7 percent agree statewide; 88.9 percent agree at BMS.
In this school, we take steps to solve problems: statewide 79 percent agree; 100 percent agree at BMS.
The faculty has an effective process for making group decisions to solve problems: statewide, teachers agree 62.1 percent; 77.8 percent agree at BMS, compared to 14.3 percent at MHS.
Students at this school follow rules of conduct: 67.7 percent of state middle school teachers agree; 88.9 percent agree at BMS.
School leadership makes a sustained effort to address teacher concerns about: Following are the topics and percent of BMS teachers who agree: leadership issues — 55.6 percent; facilities and resources — 88.9 percent; use of time in my school — 66.7 percent; professional development – 66.7 percent; empowering teachers — 77.8 percent; community engagement — 88.9 percent; student learning — 88.9 percent; and new-teacher support: 55.6 percent. All of these percentages of agreement surpass those at MHS, most by more than 20 percent.
The following questions reflect the response of BMS teachers if they agree or disagree with statements about professional development at the high school.
Teachers pursue professional development opportunities provided at your school: 78 said yes at statewide middle schools; 85.7 percent agree at BMS, compared to 44 percent at MHS.
Professional development is evaluated and results are communicated to teachers: 42.6 percent agree statewide; 33.3 percent agree at BMS compared to 15.4 percent at MHS.
Sufficient resources are available for professional development in my school: 68.5 percent agree statewide; 55.6 percent agree at BMS and 35.7 percent agree at MHS.
Teachers are encouraged to reflect on their own practice: 85 percent agree statewide; 66.7 percent at BMS.
Professional development enhances teachers’ ability to implement instructional strategies that meet diverse student learning needs: 65.2 percent agree statewide; 55.6 percent at BHS compared to 30.8 percent at BMS.
An appropriate amount of time is provided for professional development: 62.9 percent agree statewide; 66.7 percent agree at BMS.
School leadership participates in professional development opportunities with teachers: 74.6 agree statewide; 71.4 percent at BMS.
The last section of the survey addresses instructional practices and support.
There are three survey questions out of 13 total in this category in which Barone Middle School teachers positively exceed statewide teachers. Barone trails in all others
The first is that the curriculum taught in this school is aligned with Common Core Standards: 87.5 percent of state middle school teachers agree; 100 percent agree at BMS.
The second is the statement that faculty are committed to helping every student learn: statewide, the agreement rate is 93.2 percent; 100 percent at BMS.
The third is the statement that teachers have autonomy to make decisions about instructional delivery: statewide, the agreement rate is 74.5 percent; it is 88.9 percent at BMS.
On the opposite end of the survey is the statement that state assessment data are available in time to impact instructional practices: 44.3 percent of state middle school instructors agree; 22.2 percent at BHS.
Teachers share their students’ accomplishments with the school community: agreement is 78.5 percent statewide; 55.6 percent at Barone and that compares to 83.3 percent at MHS.
The curriculum taught meets the needs of the students: 77.5 percent of middle school teachers agree statewide; 55.6 percent agree at Barone, and that compares to 78.6 percent at Meeker High School.