Arkansas Superintendent Survey Survey on Superintendents in Arkansas

     This Survey was mailed to every  Superintendents in Arkansas, May, 2003 from American Family Association.   There are 308 superintendents, and 154 surveys were returned, making it a 50% return. For results click here: Superintendent Survey Results.


Superintendent Survey   

_______I certify that I am a superintendent in the state of  Arkansas.


Circle the letter of the statement with which you agree for each number.

1.   A.  In recent years, our schools have experienced more local control.

      B.  In recent years, our schools have experienced  more and more  government  control.                 


2.   A.  The federal legislation No Child Left Behind will improve the quality of education in Arkansas.

       B.  The federal legislation No Child Left Behind will increase government control even more and            and will make it harder to provide quality education in Arkansas.


3.   A.  The State Department of Education is placing the right amount of emphasis on improving test scores.          

      B.  The State Department of Education is placing too much emphasis on test scores and is coercing educators to teach to the test.


4.   A.  Teachers and administrators have had significant input into new educational  reforms.

      B.  The new educational reforms have been a top down approach with educational bureaucrats and/or legislators making most or all the significant decisions.


5.    A.  I feel free to publicly express my opinions about educational reform without fear of  negative             consequences.

       B.  I do not feel free to publicly express my opinions about educational reforms because doing so this  may result in negative consequences for my school.


6.   A.  The state's ACTAAP testing system (criterion-referenced tests such as the new benchmark  4th   grade, 8th grade, and high school end-of-level exams that took the  place of the exit exam)  is a better reflection of student achievement than the SAT-9  standardized tests. 

       B.  The SAT-9 standardized tests that compare test scores to the rest of the nation reflect student          achievement better than the state's ACTAAP testing system.


7.   A.  Smart Start, the testing system in Arkansas, and other educational reforms are clearly understood      by educators, board members, legislators, and the public.

      B.  Smart Start, the testing system in Arkansas, and other educational reforms are confusing, complex, and easily misinterpreted by educators, board members, legislators, and the public.


8.    A.  I think consolidation would solve some of the educational needs in Arkansas.

       B.  I do not think consolidation of any kind would solve the problems the schools face in                        providing quality education for the students in Arkansas?


9.     ______Distance learning can be used effectively to meet the expanded course offerings mandated by the state and would be more effective for quality education than consolidation.       YES or  NO




______10.   On a scale of 1-10, how well are the mandates from the state addressing the real needs for providing a better education for our students?  (10 meaning educational reforms are addressing the real needs the most effectively.) 


______11.   On a scale of 1-10,  where would you rate the need for more course offerings or an enriched  curriculum in order to provide a quality education for your students?  (10 representing the greatest need for more course offerings) 


Approximate figures, not paper and pencil figures, are all we are asking for on following questions.


______ 12.  What percent of the mandates you are required to implement come from the federal government.


______ 13.  What percent of the mandates you are required to implement come from the state government?


______ 14.  What percent  of  the mandates from the state are unfunded?


_____­­_ 15.  What percent of  the mandates from the federal government are unfunded?


______ 16.   What percent of your time is expended in studying and implementing state and federal mandates?


_______17.  What  percent of the mandates from the state and federal government are needed to provide quality education in your school?


_______18.   What percent of  the decisions have the superintendents and school board been allowed to make for your school

            a.   the last five years?  _______

            b.  10 years ago?          _______

            c.  15 years ago?          _______

            d.  20 years ago?          _______


______19.   What percent of the co-op services that your school uses is used to meet state or federal mandates? 


______20.    Argue’s and Huckabee’s Consolidation Bill (Public Education Reorganization Act) Section 17, 6-13-1601 (a) (1) proposes creating service centers to replace educational co-ops and proposes that all employees of  the service centers be state department employees. Governor Huckabee’s original written plan calls for 30 service centers to replace the 15 co-ops.  There are a total of  944 employees at these co-ops, and only a few of  them are state department employees.  Do you think 1800 more state department employees would help improve the  quality of education in Arkansas?  YES  or  NO.


______21.  Do you think any increase in the number of state department employees would be a good investment of the state’s money for quality education in Arkansas? YES  or NO



______22.   Have you heard authorities  use very similar language to the following quote  given by a retired teacher who recently testified at a Senate Education Committee?  YES or  NO


            A representative from the co-op told teachers in a workshop, “Arkansas frameworks and the test go together. The State of Arkansas has given you the frameworks.  The state is saying this is what you should be teaching.  This is what is on the test.  This is what teachers are going to have to do. A lot of places are throwing away the textbooks and are just using these frameworks. If  your scores don’t measure up, your school can be taken over by the state.”

            “He gave us some other practical suggestions that he said had increased scores up to 11% in some areas.  One of  those suggestions was to give good students enrichment work (teacher call that busy work) while we taught and re-taught the test item objectives to slower students.  He also recommended working diligently and spending  our time working with borderline students to bring them up to passing and to more or less forget about those students that were low enough that they weren’t going to make it anyway.”


            23.   If your answer to # 22  above is yes, from whom did you hear this type of  training.  Put checkmark in correct blank or blanks.

            a. _____  Co-op representative

            b.  ____  ADE representative

            c. _____  Director of  ADE

            e ______ Other


______24.    Would you like for the AAEA leadership to poll superintendents  by e-mail before they support or oppose particular bills?  YES or NO. _____


            25.  If you had to choose just one thing that would help you improve education in your school, excluding money, what would it be?_______________________________________




















If  You Have More Comments Or If You Want To Type Them Or Print Them Off Rather Than Handwrite Them, Type Them  On Your Computer And Then Print Them On  The Back Of  This Sheet Or Other Survey Sheets. (Just be sure you turn the paper right.)




For Results to Survey see:  Superintendent Survey Results.













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