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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

FCPS Trust and Confidence Survey Shows That Parents, Taxpayers Retain Strong Trust in School Division

Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) Superintendent Jack D. Dale has released the results of the second annual trust and confidence survey of FCPS parents and taxpayers that measured their opinions about a number of issues related to the school district.

The assessment was distributed during September and surveyed nearly 12,000 parents and non-parent taxpayers to determine their overall level of trust and confidence in the school system. 

Survey participants were asked whether they agreed with a number of statements about FCPS. A total of 83 percent of parent respondents strongly agreed or agreed that FCPS is a trustworthy public institution, and 63 percent of non-parents strongly agreed or agreed with that statement. These numbers are up slightly from 2011 respondents.

Of parents who responded, 83 percent agreed or strongly agreed that FCPS is providing students with the right education for the 21st century, and 54 percent of non-parents strongly agreed or agreed with that statement. When asked whether FCPS manages its budget responsibly, 52 percent of parents agreed or strongly agreed, and 38 percent of non-parents agreed or strongly agreed. Forty-five percent of non-parents said they did not have enough information to make an assessment.

“While the second trust and confidence survey results are very consistent with the results from last year’s survey, they revealed that we need to continue to build public trust by enhancing our two-way communications with our stakeholders,” said Dale.  “We learned that many stakeholders, especially our taxpayers who don’t have children in FCPS, feel they don’t have enough information to make an assessment on critical areas like the budget and principal leadership, and those are areas on which we plan to concentrate.”

Last year, FCPS published a monthly insert in the Connection newspapers to give residents more information about how the school district functions. This effort will continue with inserts in the Washington Post Local Living section throughout the year. In addition, FCPS will soon launch a new e-newsletter designed to share information with taxpayers without children in FCPS called My FCPS – Community.

Parents who responded to the survey indicated that they feel they are informed about the school district: 97 percent of respondents said they were informed or informed to a great extent, and the majority trust FCPS communications (76 percent), and their local school (69 percent) to provide accurate, timely information.

For complete results, visit www.fcps.edu. To sign up for the new community newsletter, visit www.fcps.edu/kit/.

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Note: For more information, contact the FCPS Department of Communications and Community Outreach at 571-423-1200.