Count Us In! Student Census
Grand Erie Delves into Student Census Data to Address Factors Affecting School Experiences
Grand Erie District School Board has completed important next steps in the analysis of data collected from its first student census.
“The census initiative follows Ontario’s Education Equity Action Plan, the province’s strategy for identifying and eliminating discriminatory practices, barriers, and biases from schools and classrooms, and is a crucial step to ensuring equity and addressing the factors affecting it,” said Christine Bibby, Grand Erie’s Safe and Inclusive Schools Lead, who spearheaded the initiative along with the Safe and Inclusive Schools team. “Our goal is to create learning environments that allow every student to reach their full potential, and with this information, we’re in a better position to achieve that.”
The findings from the census are being used to remove barriers to inclusion, inform programming, and better understand the factors that contribute to students’ overall experiences of school. The recently completed phase of analysis examined students’ perceptions of their schooling, and how various demographic factors intersect to affect those experiences. Find the full report here: http://bit.ly/38Zpo1f.
“Some of the key findings from the census reveal that socio-economic status is a factor related to students’ experiences of school, and our LGBTQ+ students appear to be having challenges related to their school experiences,” said Greg Rousell, Grand Erie’s System Research Lead, who presented the information to Trustees on Monday at the Regular Board Meeting. “When data reveals something troublesome, we have an ethical and a moral obligation to respond to it.”
Grand Erie’s response includes plans for consultations with community agencies and advocacy groups to address some of the systemic barriers to inclusion, and to share key findings with school principals and administrative staff to inform School Achievement Plans moving forward.
Grand Erie’s student census was completed last March. The voluntary and confidential census received feedback from 83 per cent of Grand Erie students in Grades 4-12. The census asked students about their race, culture, and religion. Students in Grades 9-12 were also asked about their sexual orientation and gender identity. Results from the student census were shared with Trustees at the September 9, 2019 Committee of the Whole Meeting. Find those results here: https://bit.ly/37UebgX.
Grand Erie’s Multi-Year Plan, Success for Every Student, includes a commitment to Equity, promoting practices that help students and families feel safe, welcomed and included.
September 2019: Results from Grand Erie's First Student Census Will Inform the Board's Next Steps for Planning and Supports for Students
The results are in from Grand Erie District School Board’s first student census, a survey of students in Grades 4-12 conducted last spring. The data collected will be used to better understand student needs, remove barriers to inclusion, and effectively plan programming and supports for all students.
“The census findings provide a more accurate picture of our student populations and school communities, an understanding which is crucial to ensuring equity and addressing systemic barriers,” said Wayne Baker, Superintendent of Education responsible for Grand Erie’s Safe and Inclusive Schools team, which led this initiative. “To help students succeed, we need to understand who they are.”
The confidential and voluntary student census was completed in class, and asked students about themselves and their experiences both inside and outside of school. Grand Erie’s participation rate was 83 per cent. Responses are secured in a database accessed only by authorized research staff.
“It was extremely important that the census capture a multitude of student voices,” said Baker. “What we now know is that we have diversity in all areas of our Board, and this information will help us close the gaps for marginalized students.”
The census initiative follows Ontario’s Education Equity Action Plan, the province’s strategy for identifying and eliminating discriminatory practices, barriers, and biases from schools and classrooms, and is a critical step to ensuring equity and addressing the factors affecting it. The census was supported by Grand Erie’s Board of Trustees, Senior Administration, and a host of community groups and organizations.
Key findings from the census report include:
For the full report on the student census and its findings, click here.
For the public data set from the student census, click here.
For questions about the student census, contact Greg Rousell, System Research Leader at Grand Erie at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-756-6301, ext. 281042.
March 2019: Count Us In!, Grand Erie’s First Student Census
The goal of Grand Erie’s Multi-Year Plan is Success for Every Student. This can only be achieved if the Board truly understands the needs of its students and their families.
To gather this information, Grand Erie will launch its first-ever student census, Count Us In!, from March 18-29.
All Grand Erie students in Grades 4-12 will take part in the census. This initiative is being led by the Board’s Safe and Inclusive Schools Team and has the support of Trustees, Senior Management and a host of community groups and organizations. It is also part of a larger initiative by the Ministry of Education and Ontario’s Education Equity Action Plan.
The census findings will help Grand Erie better understand student populations and school communities; identify and eliminate barriers to student success, inclusion and well-being; and establish effective programs to increase student services.
The student census will be completed in class and feature questions that ask students about themselves and their experiences, both inside and outside of school. To view the student census, Student Census Grades 4-8 and Student Census Grades 9-12.
Grand Erie’s student census is confidential. All responses will be stored in a secure, confidential database that will only be accessed by authorized research staff to identify and summarize Board trends. Individual student questionnaires will not be analyzed. Grand Erie District School Board is committed to the highest levels of privacy and confidentiality in collecting information about students. We follow all privacy requirements outlined in the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA). The information gathered through the student census is collected under the legal authority of the Education Act (R.S.O. 1990, c. E. 2, as amended) for educational and research purposes only.
Grand Erie believes it’s critical for the student census to reflect all of the voices that exist within the Board. The more responses received, the more reliable the data will be and the more effective Grand Erie can be in supporting all students moving forward. The data collected will be used to inform and improve programming and instruction as well as create and improve student services.
Students or parents/guardians who decide not to participate will need to let their school know by Friday, February 22.For questions about the student census, see the Board’s Frequently Asked Questions here or contact Greg Rousell, System Research Leader at Grand Erie at: email@example.com or 519-756-6301, ext. 281042.