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Community Survey Results Indicate High Marks for Lakeville Area Schools

June 28, 2022

Results from a representative random sample phone survey of Lakeville Area Schools district residents were presented to the School Board at its June 28 meeting. Community surveys are used by many school districts across the state and nation in order to inform district planning processes, engage stakeholders, and provide valid and projectable data on community sentiments and values. 

The survey addressed a number of areas, including: perceptions of the district’s quality, management, offerings, staff and facilities; issues facing the district; diversity and equity; and communication.

Survey highlights (results represent all residents, unless noted):

  • 87% rate the quality of Lakeville Area Schools education as excellent or good
  • 86% are proud of district schools and would recommend them to friends
  • 89% believe the community receives a good value from its investment in district schools
  • 80% trust the school board and administration to do what’s right for students
  • 76% believe the district has spent its funding effectively and efficiently
  • 70% rate the district’s financial management as excellent or good
  • Lack of funding was considered the most serious issue facing the district, aside from the COVID-19 pandemic
  • 93% of parents rate the performance of teachers as excellent or good
  • 70% of parents rated the district’s handling of the pandemic as excellent or good, with comments 6:1 in favor of the district’s COVID protocols and mask policies
  • 86% agree that the Lakeville Area Schools District should eliminate barriers and bias, when present in the school system, to create an inclusive learning environment for all students
  • 89% agree that the broader community has a role to play in creating an environment in Lakeville Area Schools that celebrates all cultures and all races
  • 67% rate the school district’s Community Education programs as excellent or good

With regard to communication, the Sun This Week was in residents’ top four preferred sources for news about the district - coming in as the first choice by 13%, after the district’s mailed newsletter (23%), district website (20%) and district emails (16%). Parent-specific preferences for district news were district emails (53%), district website (23%) and the district’s mailed newsletter (13%).

“With a new superintendent joining us this summer and a Strategic Plan being launched this fall, it was an opportune time to survey our community on a wide range of issues,” said Dr. Emily McDonald, Lakeville Area Schools Assistant Superintendent. “This survey is one part of our commitment to listening to and engaging with our community. We will use these results to help us identify areas of strength and where we need to grow, as well as give us baseline results to measure progress in the future.”

Survey results were presented by Peter Leatherman, of Morris-Leatherman, a Twin Cities full-service research firm with decades of experience in surveys and market research for school districts, cities and other organizations. A random sample of 400 residents and 400 additional parents were called in April 2022, making the survey results projectable within +/- 5% in 95 out of 100 cases. The survey results presentation is available in the agenda packet of the June 28 Regular Board meeting.