School Climate & Working Conditions
News & Announcements
Virginia School Survey of Climate and Working Conditions
The Virginia Department of Education is collaborating with the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services to reduce the survey burden on schools by consolidating requirements for school climate and working conditions surveys. Refer to Superintendent’s Memo 242-20-This is a Word document. for more information on survey requirements for the 2020-21 school year.
Climate and Working Conditions Surveys
2020-2021 Survey Administration
The 2021 Virginia School Survey of Climate and Working Conditions will be administered to schools beginning January 11, 2021, and ending March 19, 2021 through a partnership between the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) and the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS). Watch a recorded Survey Administration Webinar hosted by VDOE and DCJS.
Watch the VDOE and DCJS video to learn more about the importance of the Virginia School Survey of Climate and Working Conditions from education and school safety leaders in Virginia. The COVID-19 pandemic has created uncertainty through which schools continue to provide educational services to students. As teachers, staff, and students adapt to new instructional circumstances, it is critically important that we understand the impact of the pandemic on climate and working conditions, and continue to monitor our progress towards recovery. The Virginia School Survey becomes a tool for division leaders and principals to monitor and ensure all students and staff have access to a healthy and positive environment in which to learn, work, interact, and grow, whether remotely or in-person.
Review copies of the surveys for classroom instructors, staff, and students are available through the links below:
- 2021 VA School Survey: Classroom Instructors Version-This is a Word document.
- 2021 VA School Survey: Staff Version-This is a Word document.
- 2021 VA School Survey: Student Version-This is a Word document.
Additional information on the 2021 Virginia School Survey administration will be posted on this page as it becomes available. Questions may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
2018-2019 Survey Administration
In 2018-2019, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) administered school climate surveys to students in grades 4 and 5 and 9 through 12 and working conditions surveys to any teacher or school staff holding a license from VDOE. The surveys were conducted through a partnership with the University of Virginia and funded by a grant from the Institute of Education Sciences.
Reports summarizing state results for the teacher and staff working conditions surveys are available through the links below:
- 2019 VA Working Conditions Teacher State Results-This is a Word document.
- 2019 VA Working Conditions Non-Teacher Staff State Results-This is a Word document.
Reports summarizing state results for the school climate survey are available through University of Virginia’s Center on Education Policy and Workforce Competitiveness.
For additional information, contact Dr. Jennifer Piver-Renna, Director of Research, at (804) 225-3698 or Jennifer.Piver-Renna@doe.virginia.gov.
The school community is responsible for creating and maintaining a comfortable and orderly physical environment with visionary and supportive leadership that promotes active engagement and communication among and between students, staff, and parents.
- Connectedness is demonstrated by regular attendance, participation in school activities, open communication with students and families, and school spirit.
- Facilities are clean, orderly, and have adequate resources.
- Leadership has a clear vision everyone understands, an open-door policy for all, and supports staff and their development.
The school community is responsible for creating a culturally responsive environment that promotes mutually respectful, supportive, ethical and civil relationships among and between students and staff.
- Respect for diversity is widespread between students and adults, and across the community.
- Adult social support is evident in the form of high expectations for student’s success, willingness to listen, genuine concern for problems, and in welcoming parent involvement.
- Student social support can be found in activities that promote positive peer social relationships, including socializing, problem solving, academic help, and welcoming new students.
- Professional relationships are characterized by working well and learning together.
The school community is responsible for addressing barriers to teaching and learning and for implementing effective teaching practices that promote academic, social, emotional, and civic development of students.
- Learning support can be seen in teaching practices that provide opportunities to show knowledge, think independently, engage in dialogue and ask questions where academic rigor and high expectations for all are the norm.
- Social and civic learning are evident in practices that model and teach good citizenship, effective listening, conflict resolution, emotional states, empathy, personal responsibility, and ethics.
- Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS), a component of Virginia Tiered System of Supports
- National School Climate Center on Social Emotional Teaching and Learning
- Collaborative for Academic, Social Emotional Learning (CASEL)
The school community is responsible for creating an environment where all members are welcomed, supported, and feel safe in school: socially, emotionally, and physically.
- Rules and expectations on discipline and behavior are developmentally appropriate, communicated clearly, and enforced fairly.
- Implementing School Discipline Practices that Create a Positive School Climate
- Creating a Positive School Climate: Implementing Equitable and Effective School Discipline Practices (webinar December 2013)
- Supportive School Discipline – Communities of Practice
- VDOE School Climate Reports
- Restorative Justice in Action: Fairfax County Public Schools
- Virginia Board of Education Model Guidance for Positive and Preventative Code of Student Conduct Policy and Alternatives to Suspension
- Physical security at school and school events involves planning in five major categories: prevention, protection, response, recovery and mitigation.
- Social-emotional security is evident when students and staff feel safe from verbal abuse to exclusion – or any form of bullying and harassment.
- Bullying Prevention
- Model Policy to Address Bullying in Virginia’s Public Schools
- Bullying Prevention in the Promotion of a Positive School Climate: Effective Principles and Practices (Statewide Anti-Bullying Conference held June 20, 2012)
- Substance use does not occur on school grounds or among students.
- Wellness is promoted through the availability of health food choices and health supports.
Models for Implementation
- Virginia Tiered System of Supports
- Creating an Integrated Framework for Improving School Climate
- Student Assistance Programming: Creating Positive Conditions For Learning
Other Resources & Publications
- Virginia Secondary School Climate Study – UVA Curry School of Education
- Youth Violence Project – UVA Curry School of Education
- National School Climate Center
- Safe Supportive Learning Technical Assistance Center-This is a PDF document.
- Measuring Student Engagement-This is a PDF document.