Preparing for growth with infrastructure and the stress caused by grades and class rank rose to the top of the thoughts from the Vandegrift High School community conversation on student experience, which launched on Thoughtexchange after the Feb. 17 meeting with families, students and staff in VHS feeder schools.

“Another access road to Vandegrift. It’s dangerous that a school this size does not have another exit road,” wrote one of the commenters. 

VHS and its feeder schools had an opportunity to share feedback, ideas and thoughts about how students experience school from Feb. 17 – March 2 as part of a Thoughtexchange

Review the entire report, including all of the submissions here. We will release the final report in June, which will also include submissions from the entire district. 

“After visiting with students at Vandegrift and meeting with families in that community, we know this is a caring community focused on providing support for the whole child,” Superintendent Bruce Gearing, Ed.D. said. “I want to thank our participants for weighing in. We look forward to disseminating this data and bringing forth continuous improvement to these schools.”

After the submission window closed, we worked with Thoughtexchange data experts to categorize or theme all of the submissions. In looking at the themes, we can review the data based on total submissions and how respondents rated those thoughts. 

While these themes may be adjusted as we hear from other communities for comparison purposes, you can review the methodology in the following table:

RatingThoughtsThemes Description (ideas and concepts included in the theme)
113Classroom or School SizeFocusing on class size or student-teacher ratios.
210Traffic & ParkingAddressing issues of infrastructure, roads, and parking around the school. 
39Post-Graduation PrepPreparing students for post-graduate life, including college prep, trade schools, and social and soft skills for a changing world. 
46SafetyRelating to the safety and security of the school facilities.
53Social or Emotional LearningSupporting students through social-emotional skills, relationships, with a ‘whole child’ approach, and/or through an inclusive and bully-free learning environment.
65TeachersEnsuring we support high-quality teachers and staff for student learning through resources, professional development, and leadership.  
71Grades or Class RankRelating to homework, testing, and teaching to a test.
84New or Improved ProgramsImproving current course offerings or new programs to introduce, including a more robust foreign language program, critical thinking courses, and financial literacy.
915Resources Investing in resources and facilities, including technology and textbooks.
1011CommunicationPrioritizing regular updates and communication from staff to parents.
112Individualized LearningOffering diverse learning opportunities and instruction that account for individual student needs and capacities.
127Clubs, Sports, or ActivitiesOffering more variety of clubs and other ways to help students be engaged.
1312Planning or PolicyRelating to issues of feeder schools, zoning, bussing and other district-level planning.
148MiscellaneousIncluded general thoughts about providing quality education.
1514Schedule or CalendarIncluding a variety of topics related to scheduling and the school calendar.

We released VHS as our third feeder pattern report, with Vista Ridge High School and Leander High School released earlier this month. Ultimately, we will have a report in June that considers all feeder patterns as a whole district, as well as data collected in our Equity and Diversity meetings, our Employee Engagement Survey, and our School Climate Surveys.