Revere School Committee of the Whole Irons Out How To Move Forward With Superintendent Performance Survey

At Tuesday’s Revere School Committee of the Whole subcommittee meeting, committee members finalized how the School Committee would move forward with an upcoming staff feedback survey accessing Revere Public School Superintendent Dr. Dianne Kelly’s performance.

At Tuesday’s meeting the Committee of the Whole voted that Revere Public School principals, assistant principals, directors, department heads and assistant superintendents.will take part in the survey.

However, one of the more lengthy debates at Tuesday’s meeting was whether or not the survey should include the names of respondents to the survey or should responders remain anonymous.

Committee members Carol Tye and Michael Ferrante were in the minority and voted on an initial motion to require respondents to the survey provide their names.

“I have never been a fan of anonymous surveys, mainly because in the times that I’ve had them, it seems that only the people who have an ax to grind are the ones who send them in,” said Tye. “If it’s anonymous I just think that’s an opening for discussion that will not be positive, that will not lead to any conclusion, and we will still worry if this person has an ax to grind. I do feel strongly that it should be named. But I understand that my colleagues might feel differently from the way I do.”

Ferrante was in Tye’s corner saying, “We want an honest survey and I think if somebody puts their name to it you’ll get a more honest survey versus the people that don’t. I don’t really want to run into something like the Internet where you can just say whatever you want. I just think that if you make somebody put their name to it they will give you a better response and people that won’t you’re gonna get a lot of naysayers.”

Committee members John Kingston and Aisha Milbury-Ellis were both in favor of making putting a name on the survey an option.

“I think that some folks may be concerned about airing their concerns,” said Kingston. “I think providing an option would be fine. If you’d like to put your name in, fine. But if you don’t, you don’t have to. I think that would be fair. Most surveys that I’ve done have given me that option. I think that I just think it opens the door for everybody.”

Committee member Aisha Milbury-Ellis agreed with Kingston saying, “I like the idea of having the option to put your name if you’d like to. For me, I just don’t think it matters what the name is on the survey or who’s reporting it. I think these (responses) are going to be taken with a grain of salt to some extent anyway. So I think it’s just for us to kind of get an idea  and just see if there’s any type of pattern in the answers to the survey questions.”

Tye made a motion to require names on responses to the survey but that motion failed.

Kingston made a subsequent motion to make putting names on the survey optional which passed 4 to 2 with Tye and Ferrante voting against Kingston’s motion.

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