AISNSW has launched a new initiative which offers member schools a dynamic survey tool for leaders seeking to gain a comprehensive view of their whole school community.

The Perspectives: Your school in focus survey tool is designed to meet the unique needs of independent schools in NSW. Developed by the Research and Data Department at AISNSW, the surveys are based on the research and evidence supporting sustained, impactful school improvement.

At the launch held at AISNSW, Chief Executive Dr Geoff Newcombe AM, said with 50,000 additional student enrolments forecasted by 2031, it was crucial for schools to have a clear understanding of their school communities to ensure their value proposition is on target to retain their competitive advantage.

“If we are to continue to provide high quality schooling then we must be able to clearly articulate what our value proposition is,” Dr Newcombe said.

“When you understand who your audience is and the stakeholders’ perception of your school, you can well target your value proposition to accurately meet you community needs.

“Highlighting the strength of your school’s current offerings, identifying areas of opportunity for innovation and improvement while focusing on value and quality of your education service is critical.”

Social researcher Mark McCrindle who launched Perspectives: Your school in focus, said change in the global, technological and social landscapes has never been faster nor more complex.

“It used to be a little more simple – the future – you could track towards it in a linear sense … Now the future is coming at us at an increasing velocity. Digital disruption, predictive analytics, AI, drones … the future has arrived and so the more challenge we face in dealing with change across a broad array of issues affecting our schools and communities.”

Mr McCrindle said change is not just related to technology but is generational in terms of students, parents and the workforce. Almost half of the Australian workforce is made up of those dubbed Gen Y (born between 1977 and 1994).

“The need to survey the communities to get those insights is important because what worked for the Gen Xer parent may not apply for the Gen Y parent. What was engaging in the 20th century from a staff perspective may not be as relevant these days,” he said.

“We can’t make decisions just on tradition or gut instinct or our sense of the feel of where things are at but rather the importance of that data to give us those solid base insights is key.”

Dr Newcombe said Perspectives: Your school in focus is offered as a core service to AISNSW member schools.

“All independent schools from all SES levels should have access to quality survey tools, collect the data they need to make good and thoughtful decisions – decisions based on evidence,” he said.

Find more information on Perspectives: Your school in focus.