Join the trial of our School Environment and Leadership survey!


Following Prof. Rob Coe’s School Environment and Leadership: Evidence Review, we have created a BETA version of a School Environment and Leadership survey. Survey results aim to provide feedback to school leaders on the school-level factors that evidence suggests are our current best bets to attend to in order to promote students’ learning.

We’re looking for school leaders to trial the survey in their school so that we can validate the instrument. We have already conducted a small pilot, and the questions are based on the best available research, so we are confident that school leaders will find it useful. However, there is more we can do with a bigger sample to ensure the survey is as good as it can be – hence this opportunity to try the BETA version for free.

Would you like to get involved?

Key information

  • There is no cost for being part of the trial
  • To participate, one senior leader from a school should complete this short participation form by 25 January 2023
  • To gain access to the survey, one senior leader from the school needs to have a Great Teaching Toolkit: Starter Account – the name and email associated with the account must match those submitted in the participation form
  • School surveys must be completed within the month of February 2023 (the survey window)
  • Participating school leaders will be invited to webinars with Prof. Rob Coe either side of the survey window
  • Schools will receive confidential feedback reports via their Great Teaching Toolkit: Starter Account

More information

The survey is applicable to all teaching staff, and also learning support staff. Survey feedback provides insights to school leaders on key school-level factors and the extent to which they may be a barrier to student learning.

Staff are invited to answer questions relating to the areas presented in the Model for School Environment and Leadership.

Model for School Environment and Leadership

The survey is designed to capture staff perceptions about important school-level characteristics. The responses are anonymous and feedback will not be generated until five or more responses have been collected.

The survey comprises just under 50 multiple choice questions, plus one free-text question so staff can share any other thoughts or reflections, should they choose to. It should take 10-15 minutes and we suggest that all staff who are involved in teaching and learning should be included – this may be broader than just teachers.

An example of a question from the school environment and leadership survey

We aim to equip leaders with representative information from staff to help ask better questions about school priorities.

Schools participating in the trail will receive feedback reports in the following areas:


Student focused:

  • Family and community support
  • Student fundamental needs, beliefs and dispositions


  • Collaboration
  • Collective teacher expertise
  • Professional learning


  • Goals and demands
  • Supportive working relationships
  • Improvement mindset
  • Delivery
  • Staffing
  • Anonymised staff comments summarised in one report


The image below shows an example of feedback generated from the survey. Responses are divided into two categories, which may be thought of as positive / acceptable and negative / unacceptable. Positive responses are always shown with darker colours, at the bottom end of the bar, negative responses have lighter colours, presented at the top end of the bar.

For each question, the number in the white circle is the total percentage of positive / acceptable responses. The higher this number, the better.

Example data from SEL tool

What do we hope to achieve from the trial?

The kinds of questions we want to address in the validation are:

  • How well does each survey question correspond with other questions in the survey?
  • Is there an underlying single dimension of ‘quality of environment and leadership’ that is captured by all the questions?
  • Or are there multiple dimensions of quality, with different schools having quite different profiles?
  • Are there some questions that could be removed, given the pressures on time?
  • To what extent do staff in the same school agree about their perceptions of its environment and leadership? (If they don’t agree, then we may not be capturing a genuine characteristic of the school.)
  • And if we can measure the school’s environment and leadership, does that correspond with other features of the school, for example, students’ academic progress?