What is "TELL Vermont"?
TELL Vermont is an anonymous statewide survey of licensed school-based educators to assess teaching conditions at the school, district and state level.
The state’s education leaders want to ensure that every Vermont educator has the supportive environment necessary to help students achieve at the highest levels!
What is the purpose of the 2013 TELL Vermont Survey?
The 2013 TELL Vermont Survey is the second statewide opportunity for all licensed school-based educators and designated education support personnel* to provide input on teaching conditions such as:
Time during the day for collaborative instructional planning
School and teacher leadership
Facilities and resources
And other supports needed for educators to do their jobs well.
The main intent is to provide additional data for school and district improvements. Results are also expected to inform state level policy.
* Definition includes classroom-based assistants and clerical support.
Who are the partners supporting TELL Vermont?
Vermont Agency of Education
Wasn’t there a TELL Vermont Survey in 2009?
Yes. School, district, state results are online at www.tellVermont.org
What is different about the 2013 TELL Vermont Survey is the inclusion of the Governor and the Vermont Department of Education as collaborative partners supporting this work.
Why are teaching conditions important?
Teaching conditions matter:
For students (achievement) resulting in school and district improvement
For teachers (retention)
Not everyone sees them the same way (Important to understand when trying to change the status quo)
The work is research-driven and is now part of national education reform initiatives.
Can you tell me about the basics of the survey?
TELL Vermont is an anonymous, online survey of every licensed school-based educator in the state of Vermont.
The survey will be live from March 25-April 19, 2013.
Educators can access the survey via any Internet location, using an individual, anonymous access code.
Anyone can view the response rate at any school during the survey window to make sure every school reaches the minimum response rate needed for data (50%).
Results will be available for schools reaching the 50% minimum response rate and minimum of 5 educators.
How can I take the survey?
Once you receive your anonymous access code, visit www.tellVermont.org
Use any Internet location
View the survey questions
Read about the research
Take the survey!
How will educators receive their anonymous access codes?
The VEA representative in each school will receive a packet of letters the week of March 18th. There will be a Letter of Instruction included. The VEA representative is asked to work with the administrator and:
Set up a faculty meeting to take place on March 25 or March 26.
Share key talking points about the TELL Vermont Survey.
Disseminate the letters randomly. Teachers can switch their letters once received with other licensed educators based in their same school.
Meet personally with anyone not in attendance to explain the process.
Why is it important to complete the TELL Vermont Survey?
A growing body of research shows the importance of positive teaching conditions to student learning and teacher retention (see http://www.newteachercenter.org/tlcsurvey/index.php#tlc).
Education leaders in Vermont want to hear from every teacher and administrator in order to make the best decisions about facilities and resources, professional development, time for collaboration, and ways for improving instruction. TELL Vermont will provide that data and much more.
YOUR voice will help inform the decisions that are made not only at your school, but also in your district.
Who can participate in the survey?
All licensed school-based educators (teachers, administrators, media coordinators, counselors, etc.) in the state.
Itinerant teachers should complete a survey for their home-based school but may also complete a survey for any other school in which they work.
Licensed school-based part-time teachers can participate.
Designated education support personnel which includes classroom assistants and clerical support.
Are central office licensed personnel included?
No. Only school-based licensed educators.
Do administrators receive separate codes?
No. There are no distinct access codes for administrators, teachers, or education support personnel. All anonymous access codes will be in the packet of letters sent to the school representative.
Do education support personnel receive separate codes?
No. They will use the same website (www.tellvermont.org) to access the survey using one of the anonymous access codes on the letter. At the very beginning of the survey the participant will be asked to select his/her school position and when selecting “Education Support Personnel” will then be directed to a separate survey.
Do administrators take the same survey as teachers?
No. They will use the same website (www.tellVermont.org) to access the survey using one of the anonymous access codes on the letter. At the very beginning of the survey the participant will be asked to select his/her school position.
When the principal selects “Administrator” he/she will then receive many of the same questions as teachers, but will receive an additional bank of questions that have been specifically designed for administrators.
How are the administrator and ESP results reported?
To ensure anonymity of all respondents, all responses for administrators and ESPs are reported at the state level.
Can you ensure that this is anonymous?
The survey is about the school environment - not about any one person or individual.
There are NO questions asked that refer to an individual educator or administrator rather, questions refer to “leadership” at the school.
There are no questions on the survey that specifically ask about subject areas or grade levels.
When the letters with the unique, anonymous access codes are distributed by the VEA representative, educators are encouraged to switch letters, thereby demonstrating the codes are anonymous.
When the school reports are released (for all schools that reach at least a 50% response rate and with a minimum 5 teachers) there is nothing to indicate any type of teacher or any one administrator in a school or district.
While there are some demographic questions on the survey, the answers to these questions are only reported at the state level, and not at the district or school level.
There is no way that any connection can be made that a teacher or principal at a certain school gave a certain response.
What if I’m the only new teacher? Or the only ESL teacher? How will my response really be anonymous?
There is a minimum sample size of at least 5 for any school level report; So, unless there are at least 5 teachers within their first three years of teaching, no data will appear on the school report for the “New Teacher Section.”
Additionally, individuals can feel even more secure about their anonymity being protected because:
It is not possible to view data by role, years of experience, or any other demographic information at the school or district level.
Demographic data will only be reported at the state level.
If the Department decides in the future to make raw data available to districts for further research, demographic information will be removed.
How do we know when a school reaches the minimum 50% response rate needed for school-level data?
At www.tellVermont.org you can click on any school and view a response rate tracker in real time.
How long does it take to complete the survey?
TELL Vermont takes approximately 30 minutes to complete.
You must complete it in one session and be sure to click “submit” when you are finished.
When will the results be ready? How can they be viewed?
All data will be available on the www.tellVermont.org website approximately 4 weeks after the close of the survey window. Results will be embargoed and available only to educators for 10 business days prior to public announcement.
Results show answers to every question by school* and district
Results can be downloaded in Excel format
There will be Guides posted on www.tellVermont.org for districts and schools on how to use the data for school improvement planning.
State results will be analyzed and reported in Fall 2013.
*Only for schools reaching the minimum threshold for response.
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Who is administering this survey?
The state leaders have contracted with the New Teacher Center (NTC) to administer the state’s survey. NTC is a national organization dedicated to supporting the development of a high-quality teaching force. NTC has conducted similar surveys in other states and provides induction and professional development for teachers and principals across the country.
Since 2008, the NTC has collected almost one million surveys in 20 states, providing critical information to the faculty in more than 19,000 schools about issues such as planning time, facilities and resources, professional development, school and teacher leadership and other aspects of the school environment that can influence teacher effectiveness.
Learn more at: http://www.newteachercenter.org/tlcsurvey/index.php
What else can I see at www.tellVermont.org?
Entry to the survey via individualized, anonymous 6 digit access code through letters to schools
Real time response rates per school, LEA and state during the administration window
Help Desk via web, email and phone throughout survey
Schedule of Events
Date when the results will be available
What are access codes, and are they really random?
They are randomized codes, that provide confidentiality for the educators, created by the New Teacher Center and associated to school buildings so that school can use the results from their own teachers.
They are not linked to any individual.
It is impossible to trace to an individual before, during, or after the survey is completed.
It does not matter which educator uses a particular code within a school building.
Each code can only be used once.
Who can I call if I need help, lose my access code, or didn’t receive an access code?
There will be a toll-free Help Desk 7:30 AM-4:30 PM in your time zone Monday through Friday during the survey window.
Help Desk can also be accessed at any time through email or by accessing the website (www.tellVermont.org).
Anyone (principals or teachers) not receiving codes should contact the Help Desk during the survey window.