Parents of students in schools operated by the Defense Department around the world can now participate in a survey about the quality of education in their school and areas that need improvement.

The voluntary and anonymous survey is open through Feb. 4. Sponsors or spouses of the approximately 67,000 students enrolled in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade can participate in the Department of Defense Education Activity Stakeholder Feedback Survey.

Potential participants receive a link to complete a survey through their DoDEA Student Information System email address. Parents can also access the survey link at The survey takes about 15 to 20 minutes to complete.

Parents with multiple children in the DoDEA schools can complete a survey for each of their children.

In the coming weeks, students in grades 4-12, and school-level educators and support staff will be invited to participate in separate surveys. Above-school-level educators and staff are not eligible to participate.

DoDEA Director Thomas Brady stressed the importance of participation in the surveys in order to get reliable and valid data. “A high response rate provides our schools with valuable information about their programs and is part of our continual efforts to improve the quality of education provided to students of military and DoD-connected families,” Brady said in the announcement of the survey.

♦ Survey questions cover broad areas of academic instruction, sense of belonging, school safety, and overall satisfaction. Questions on diversity, equity and inclusion are asked of everyone except elementary school students. There are also questions for parents only about the quality and availability of school psychological services; and questions about working conditions, for staff members only.

♦ Survey questions for parents and students were taken from the California Healthy Kids Survey; the Panorama Equity and Inclusion Survey; and The Tripod Survey.

The Panorama Equity and Inclusion Survey was developed with the Reimagining Integration: Diverse & Equitable Schools Project at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. The Tripod Survey was developed by Harvard and validated by the Gates’ Foundation’s Measures of Effective Teaching Project.

Information from the surveys will be used by school officials at all levels to gain insight into the satisfaction levels of parents and students, as one measure used for planning programs and services offered to DoDEA’s military-connected students.

Karen has covered military families, quality of life and consumer issues for Military Times for more than 30 years, and is co-author of a chapter on media coverage of military families in the book "A Battle Plan for Supporting Military Families." She previously worked for newspapers in Guam, Norfolk, Jacksonville, Fla., and Athens, Ga.

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