Ready to move ahead: Survey helping new superintendent find his way

SAN BENITO — When Superintendent Dr. Adrian Vega first started his reign at the school district, he asked everyone three questions.

* What do you believe is working well in our district?

* What is working well but could be improved?

* From your perspective, what are our major concerns?

In an effort to gain a better understanding of the district, Vega supplied a survey to every employee, staff member, and parent and community member.

Just this week, the results of the survey came back and they are revealing.

In total, Vega said there have been more than 930 responses to the three questions. Everyone was asked the same three.

The top five overall responses to the first question – “What do we do well?” – were:

* San Benito CISD has a dedicated workforce.

* People feel that the Administration works well together.

* SBCISD has great afterschool programs and activities.

* SBCISD has an incredibly strong Career and Technical Education Program.

* SBCISD has an outstanding Child Nutrition Program.

The top five overall responses to the second question – “What’s working but could be improved?” – were:

* People would like to have more security officers on campus.

* People would like to see an increase in transportation services.

* People would like to see more cross-training within the departments.

* People feel the district has good facilities, but that many could be updated, as well as some of the parking lots.

* People feel the district should review instructional strategies that impact the special populations, such as bilingual students.

The top five overall responses to the third question – “What are our major concerns?” – were:

* Instability in the leadership of the district.

* The increased cost of health insurance.

* The district’s financial stability and processes.

* Salaries.

* The allocation of resources.

Vega hopes the survey will help better his understanding of the district so he can better formulate, along with the help of others, a strategic plan.

“There are no right or wrong answers,” Vega said.

“The responses given to these questions represent employees, parents, and the community’s perception of how well or not so well the district is working.”

“It is critical that we affirm those things that are working well, but at the same time, be open and honest about those areas that may need some tweaking, or in some cases fixing.”

In doing so, Vega said it will take the whole district to work together to make it better.

“The qualitative data collected from the three questions is only part of the overall data that will be collected in gaining a true picture of the state of the district,” Vega said.

As previously reported, the district also will be conducting a district-wide curriculum study/audit, and a district-wide efficiency study/audit to gather the necessary quantitative data needed to further support or address those things in the district that are working and those things that are not.