What is the NC Teacher Working Conditions Survey (NCTWCS)?
The NC TWCS is an anonymous statewide survey of licensed school-based educators to assess teaching conditions at the school, district, and state level.
- NCTWCS is anonymous and completely online.
- The 2018 survey will be live from March 1-April 4, 2018.
- Educators can access the survey anytime, anywhere, via any internet location using an individual, anonymous code.
- It takes approximately 30 minutes to complete. Be sure to click “submit” when you are finished. The system will notify you once your survey is completed.
Results will be available for any NC public school reaching the 40% minimum response rate and has a minimum of 5 educators in the school.
What is the purpose of the survey? Why is it important?
The survey provides additional data for school and district improvements. Results are also expected to inform state level policy.
The state’s education leaders want to ensure that every educator has the supportive environment necessary to help students achieve at the highest levels!
What types of questions will I be asked?
The questions are objective questions that ask you to evaluate the level to which educators report the resources and supports necessary to ensure effective teaching.
This online survey asks questions about teaching and learning conditions within a school, community engagement and support, use of time, professional developmental, instructional practices and support, and teacher school leadership.
Who can take the survey?
- All licensed school-based educators (teachers, administrators, media coordinators, counselors, etc.) in the state.
- Itinerant educators should complete the survey for their home-based school.
- Part-time, licensed school-based educators may also participate.
Where can itinerant teachers take the survey?
Itinerant teachers should take survey at their base school but also have the option to take at any other school that they serve where they spend enough time to be able to assess the teaching and learning conditions in the school.
Are central office licensed personnel included?
No, only school-based licensed educators participate.
I hear administrators also take the survey. Do they receive separate codes?
No. All codes are anonymous and can be used by any licensed school-based educator. When the administrator selects their role under the demographics section, they will then receive the bank of applicable questions for administrators.
Does everyone answer the same questions?
No. Everyone will use the same website to access the survey using the unique access code. Then, the participant will be asked to select their job category at the beginning of the survey. The job category you identify will determine the customized questions you are asked to answer.
Which schools are included in the survey?
Public K-12 schools under the authority of DPI and Charter Schools are the focus of the NC TWC survey. Preschools with an NC school identification number can also be included. If your school is not on the list, please contact the Help Desk once the survey is open.
How do I take the survey?
Once you receive your anonymous access code from your school representative:
- Visit www.ncteachingconditions.org
- Click on the “Take the Survey” button
- Select your district from the drop down menu
- Press the Select button
- Select your school from the drop down menu
- Press the Select button
- Enter your anonymous access code
- Complete the survey
The survey is available 24 hours a day from any Internet-enabled device while the survey is open.
How do I receive my code?
Your school representative (NCAE Representative, School Improvement Chairperson, or principal designee) will receive a packet in February 2018 with instructions included. Packages are delivered via USPS with a bright sticker on the envelope for each school. The representative is asked to:
- Set up a faculty meeting.
- Share key talking points about the survey.
- Disseminate the letters randomly. Teachers can switch their letters once received with other licensed educators based in their same school.
- Meet personally with anyone not in attendance to explain the process.
What if I misplace, never received, or my school does not receive the anonymous access codes?
- Visit www.ncteachingconditions.org and click on “Need Help?”
- Call: 1(866)-301-2454, ext. 22, between 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Mon. – Fri., during the survey window
- Send an email: firstname.lastname@example.org
How will I know my responses were submitted successfully?
When your responses are received, you will see this message: "Thanks! Your survey is completed”
What should be done with my code once I have used it?
Each code is unique and can only be used one time, so once you have completed the survey, your code letter can be destroyed or discarded. The code is only used to count your answers for your school and will never be used to track participation or responses.
How do we know when a school reaches the minimum 40% response rate needed for school-level data?
Visit www.ncteachingconditions.org and click on “response rate” and view the tracker real-time for every school in the state.
What should we do if the website has the incorrect number of people for my school?
- All requests for headcount changes must be submitted via website by the school representative or building administrator.
- Visit www.ncteachingconditions.org and click on the link about ‘headcount’ under the tab “NEED HELP?” or visit www.ncteachingconditions.org/headcount
- Include the name of the school and district along with the corrected headcount.
NOTE: Changes will only be accepted during the survey window. Once the survey closes, no headcount changes will be made.
What are access codes and are they really anonymous?
The access codes are randomized codes created by the New Teacher Center and associated with school building so the school can use the results from the teachers in that building.
- They are not linked to any individual.
- It is impossible to trace to an individual before, during, or after the survey is completed.
- It does not matter which educator uses a particular code within a school building.
- Each code can only be used once.
How do you ensure the survey is anonymous?
- The survey is about the school environment, not about any one person or individual.
- There are NO questions asked that refer to an individual educator or administrator, rather “leadership” at the school.
- There are no questions that specifically ask about subject areas or grade levels.
- When the letters with the unique, anonymous access codes are distributed in the school, educators are encouraged to switch letters, further demonstrating the codes are anonymous.
- While there are some demographic questions on the survey, the answers are only reported at the state level, not at the district or school level.
What if I am the only new teacher? Or the only ESL teacher? How will my responses be anonymous?
There is a minimum sample size of at least 5 educators for any school-level report. So, unless there are at least 5 educators within their first three years of teaching, no data will appear on the school report for the “New Teacher” section.
Additionally, it is not possible to view data by role, years of experience, or any other demographic information at the school or district level.
When will the results be ready? How can they be viewed?
All data will be available at www.ncteachingconditions.org approximately 5 weeks after the close of the survey window for all schools reaching the minimum threshold. There will be help guides and school improvement planning resources available.
How are the administrator results reported?
To ensure anonymity of all respondents, administrator responses are not identified or reported on the website in the school or district web reports.
How will the construct composites be calculated?
The New Teacher Center is using a new method to compute construct composites beginning in 2018. This process will compute construct composites using a core set of survey items for each construct with a demonstrable impact on important outcomes for schools. Core items for each construct were chosen based on many years of analyses of TELL data and student achievement and teacher retention data.
Construct composites provide a high-level overview of educators’ perceptions of each of the constructs and are useful for identifying broad trends in the data, such as areas of improvement over time or areas that may need attention. State-specific survey items will no longer be included in the calculations. This includes three specific items in the Instructional Practices and Support construct: “State assessment data are available in time to impact instructional practices,” “State assessment provide schools with data that can help improve teaching,” and “State assessments accurately gauge students’ understanding of standards.”
For more information, view the Construct Composite handout available here: https://ncteachingconditions.org/compositesinfo
Who administers the survey in NC?
The New Teacher Center (NTC) administers the survey in NC. NTC is a national organization dedicated to supporting the development of a high-quality teaching force. NTC has vast experience conducting similar surveys in other states and provides induction and professional development for teachers and principals across the country.
How can I view real-time response and access other NC TWC resources and information?