ERIC Number: ED218339
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1981-Nov-10
Reference Count: N/A
The Utilization of a District-Wide Needs Assessment.
Bickel, William E.; Cooley, William W.
A needs assessment was conducted to determine the degree to which Pittsburgh Public Schools were meeting the educational needs of their students. Different groups were surveyed to determine their perceptions of conditions in the district. Data collection and analysis established the status of children's educational needs. The district's most serious problems were: improving student achievement in basic skills; implementing procedures for personnel evaluation; attracting and maintaining students; managing the impact of enrollment decline to control costs and increase quality; and developing a strategy for individual school improvement. The results were disseminated through interactive slide show sessions and written reports. Utilization of needs assessment results are of concern to evaluators. Three categories of use are instrumental, conceptual, and persuasive. Factors influencing utilization are timing; identification of a primary client; evaluation design; avoidance of political attacks; variety of research strategies; substantive knowledge of education as a process and structure; preliminary testing of survey instruments; atmosphere for presentation of results; and the credibility of data. The authors recommend a client orientation approach for school district evaluation. (DWH)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Pittsburgh Univ., PA. Learning Research and Development Center.