Staff Assessment Questionnaire

Seattle School District and the University of Washington. (1984). The School Self-Assessment Service.

Comments: The 94-item Staff Assessment Questionnaire measures the responses of the staff to the following nine areas: strong leadership, dedicated staff, high expectations, frequent monitoring, early identification, positive learning climate, curriculum continuity, multicultural education, and sex equity. Additional instruments include: School Goals Survey, School Assessment Questionnaire (grades 1–3), Intermediate Student Assessment Questionnaire (grades 4–6), the Secondary Student School Assessment Questionnaire (grades 7–12), and a Parent Survey.

Scale Construction: Instruments were developed based on operational definitions for the 12 characteristics of effective schools. Nine of these characteristics are addressed in the Staff Assessment Questionnaire. The remaining three are: clear goals, which is examined in the School Goals Survey; Communication and Parent/Community, which are studied in the Parent Survey. The surveys were examined by several professional groups including representatives from the Seattle Teachers’ Association as well as the Principals’ Association of Seattle Schools. A random sample of principals, teachers, students, and parents completed a pilot study.

Sample: The first random group consisted of 125 teachers. The second group consisted of 2,145 teachers from 99 schools. The final group consisted of 2,774 teachers from urban, suburban, and rural school districts.

Reliability: Alpha coefficients are reported for four samples. For the first sample they range from 0.97 (strong leadership) to 0.70 (early identification problems); for the second and third samples the results are almost identical. However, for the fourth sample, although strong leadership still has the highest coefficient (0.92), the lowest coefficient changes to curriculum (0.74). In addition, test-retest reliability with a sample of 32 teachers over a period of two weeks produces a range from 0.91 (frequent monitoring of student progress) to 0.70 (early identification of student learning problems).

Validity: Content validity was established by the construction of the instrument. Predictive validity examined the relationship to student achievement in mathematics and reading.

Data Analysis: Means, standard deviations, and reliability estimates are reported. The results of regression analysis and analysis of variance have been included.


Brixey, J. E. (2007). Examining major influences on low student achievement through a university-urban middle school partnership. EdD dissertation, University of Kansas.

Donalson, E. M. (2001). The relationship of the change process to principal leadership and teacher empowerment. EdD dissertation, University of Missouri, Columbia.

Staff Assessment Questionnaire

1. District-adopted textbooks guide my planning of instruction.
2. Our school provides its students with a strong multiethnic-multicultural education.
3. I teach basically the same content that is taught in other classes at the same grade or same course in my school.
4. Staff members of our school are sensitive to the needs and concern of both sexes.
5. Staff at our school have the same expectations of academic achievement for both female and male students.
6. Criterion-referenced tests are used to assess basic skills throughout the school.
7. The curriculum of our school is multiethnic and multicultural.
8. Student assessment information (such as criterion-referenced tests, skill checklists, etc.) is used regularly to give specific student feedback and plan appropriate instruction.
9. My school has effective programs for students who are in need of remediation.
10. Our school’s staff examines instructional materials for ethnic and racial bias.
11. Assemblies and special activities at our school reflect the ethnic and cultural diversity in the community.
12. The principal uses test results to recommend changes in the instructional program.
13. My school has effective procedures for identifying students with special learning needs.
14. The teaching styles in our school are sensitive to the needs and concerns of both sexes.
15. Multiple assessment methods are used to assess student progress in basic skills (e.g. criterion-referenced tests, work samples, mastery checklists).

16. Teachers in my school frequently assess the progress of students in basic skills.
17. The principal in my school is aware of student progress in relation to instructional objectives.
18. What I teach in my class contributes to the content of the grade or course that follows it.
19. Our school’s curriculum helps students view ideas from diverse ethnic perspectives and points of view.
20. Staff members of our school are sensitive to ethnic and cultural differences.
21. My school is responsive to students with special learning needs.
22. Staff review and analyze test results to plan instructional program changes.
23. Students with special learning needs in my class are not receiving the instructional program they need.
24. The teaching styles in our school are sensitive to the ethnic and cultural diversity of our students.
25. District curriculum documents guide my planning of instruction.
26. The atmosphere of our school is responsive to cultural, ethnic, and language differences.
27. Procedures used to motivate students are fair to both sexes.
28. What I teach in my class builds upon the content of the grade or course that precedes it.
29. Bulletin boards and other displays in our school reflect ethnic and cultural pluralism.
30. People in my school are willing to listen to the ideas and feelings of others, even when they disagree.
31. Most students in my school will perform at about the national average in academic achievement.
32. Students cut a lot of classes.
33. No challenge is too tough for our staff.
34. My principal leads formal discussions concerning instruction and student achievement.
35. Many of my students will probably leave school before high school graduation.
36. Most students in my school are capable of mastering grade-level academic objectives.
37. Vandalism is a problem in my school.
38. People in our building seek out training experiences that increase their ability to educate students.
39. Teachers in my school turn to the principal with instructional concerns or problems.
40. Teachers know and treat students as individuals.
41. I would transfer to another school if I could.
42. My principal provides frequent feedback regarding my classroom performance.
43. Teachers in my school generally believe most students are able to master the basic reading/math skills.
44. I expect that most students in my school will perform above the national average in academic achievement.
45. Our staff holds itself to the highest professional standards.
46. My principal assists faculty in interpreting test results.
47. We are committed to working together as a faculty.
48. Nearly all of my students will be at or above grade level by the end of this year.
49. Drug and alcohol abuse are problems in this school.
50. My principal is an effective disciplinarian.
51. People in our building work hard to maintain good relations with parents.
52. Discipline is fair and related to violations of agreed-upon rules.
53. Teachers in other schools would rate my school’s level of academic achievement as good.
54. Stealing is a problem in this school.
55. My principal is an important instructional resource in our school.
56. A positive feeling permeates this school.
57. I am satisfied with the variety of extracurricular activities at this school.
58. My principal promotes staff development activities for faculty.
59. My principal communicates clearly to me regarding instructional matters.
60. Teachers and staff members take a real interest in their students’ future.
61. Staff in our building have a great deal of trust.
62. My principal is accessible to discuss matters dealing with instruction.
63. My principal encourages the use of different instructional strategies.
64. I enjoy working at this school.
65. Student behavior is generally positive at my school.
66. Most of my students will show at least one year’s growth in academic achievement this year.
67. My principal mobilizes support to help achieve academic goals.
68. Discussions with my principal result in improved instructional practice.

69. If a person in the building runs into trouble, someone helps him or her out.
70. The academic ability of students in my school compares favorably with students in other schools.
71. I expect most students in my school will perform below the national average in academic achievement.
72. My principal makes frequent classroom observations.
73. Most of the students in my school will ultimately graduate from high school.
74. My principal is knowledgeable about instructional resources.
75. Students can count on staff members to listen to their side of the story and be fair.
76. The district can count on us to give our best.
77. My principal’s evaluation of my performance helps me improve my teaching.
78. Students in my school abide by school rules.
79. My principal is a strong instructional leader.
80. My school building is neat, bright, clean, and comfortable.
81. Staff in our school are proud of what they do.
82. My principal is an active participant in staff development.
83. We are ready to learn to do our jobs in a new way if it will meet the needs of students.
84. Staff and students do not view security as an issue in my school.
85. Staff in this school really care about how much students learn.
86. This school makes students enthusiastic about learning.
87. My principal is a “visible presence” in our building to both staff and students.
88. Whatever it takes, people in our building solve problems.
89. I feel there are procedures open to me to go to a higher authority if a decision has been made that seems unfair.
90. My principal uses clearly communicated criteria for judging my performance.
91. My principal provides a clear vision of what our school is all about.
92. The physical condition of my school is generally pleasant and well-kept.
93. Problems in this school are recognized and worked on.
94. People in this building are willing to help out wherever they are needed.

Scoring: Strongly Agree, Agree, Undecided, Disagree, and Strongly Disagree.