ERIC Number: ED228741
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Feb-27
Reference Count: 0
Opinion Polls--Do You Know What Your Community Thinks?
These tips on surveying public opinion are based on the contention that community surveys can be useful to educators who want to know what the community is thinking about education, are ready to respond, and have no qualms about making survey results public. The author first discusses the importance of determination of the community survey's precise goals, such as obtaining information for long-range planning, feedback on programs, or information on the level of school support or changes in opinion trends. He lists pros and cons of several types of surveys, such as printed, telephone, or face-to-face. He also discusses how many people should be surveyed and how they should be selected, contending that a sample of 384 people randomly selected will represent the thinking of any community. Selection and wording of questions is stressed, with admonitions to be brief and clear, and put most interesting questions first. There is a section on how interviewers (either teachers or volunteers) must be selected and prepared. Analyzing and using the results is seen as crucial and is discussed in detail. The views of identifiable segments (such as parents of private school students) must be extracted. The author concludes that surveying is worth the effort, time, and expense required, especially in planning for the future. (JM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Association of School Administrators (Atlantic City, NJ, February 25-28, 1983).