School Survey – an introduction

School Survey is a data-collection tool that schools, jurisdictions and school systems can use to gather feedback from their school community.

School Survey contains a national library preloaded with ministerially approved modules of questions. These include national modules of parent and student school opinion surveys, national staff opinion survey modules, and demographic modules. The demographic modules can be integrated with parent, student and staff opinion modules.

Users can also create customised questions specific to their school community.

This term is used to describe the national parent, student and staff items (and corresponding demographic questions) that have been pre-loaded into the National Library.

Ministers have agreed that the nationally agreed survey items should be included in parent and student surveys. Under the National Education Agreement and Schools Assistance Act 2008 (‘the Act’), each year schools are required to present parent, student and staff satisfaction findings in their annual report.

The School Survey system provides an ideal vehicle for meeting reporting requirements under the Act. Please contact your administrative or representative body for more information about your obligations.

A working group comprising representatives from the government, Catholic and independent education sectors developed the national parent and student opinion and demographic modules. The parent and student opinion modules were approved by the Education Council, formerly the Standing Council on School Education and Early Childhood (SCSEEC), in April 2012.

A working group sub-committee agreed the staff opinion and demographic modules. Although these modules are not ministerially approved, they can be used to survey staff.

School level

School Administrator Survey Administrator Survey Editor
Create and edit surveys, modules and questions Check Check Check
Browse and use library items Check Check Check
Create survey distributions Check Check
View reports Check Check
Add and edit school users Check
Publish items in school library Check

Jurisdiction level

Jurisdictional Administrator Jurisdictional Survey Administrator
Create and edit surveys, modules and questions Check Check
Browse and use library items Check Check
Create survey distributions Check Check
View reports Check Check
Add and edit school users Check
Add and edit jurisdiction users Check
Publish items in jurisdiction library Check
Role Jurisdiction user email address School user email address Survey respondent email address uploaded by a jurisdiction user Survey respondent email address uploaded by school user
Jurisdictional Administrator Yes (for the specific jurisdiction only) Yes (for schools in the jurisdiction only) Yes (for the specific jurisdiction only) No
Jurisdictional Survey Administrator Yes (for the specific jurisdiction only) Yes (for schools in the jurisdiction only) Yes (for the specific jurisdiction only) No
School Administrator No Yes (for the specific school only) No Yes (for the specific school only)
School Survey Administrator No Yes (for the specific school only) No Yes (for the specific school only)
School Survey Editor No No No No

Note that any email addresses uploaded to School Survey are stored indefinitely, in Australia, and on secure servers hosted by Education Services Australia (ESA).

ESA is bound not to use or disclose any information uploaded to the system, except where required by law; however, it is still important to check that you are acting within your school privacy policy before uploading email addresses.

Access to data in School Survey depends on four factors:

  • whether a school has a Jurisdictional Administrator who has set permissions to view data (this should always be advised to you by your Jurisdictional Administrator which will be the relevant government education department, Catholic Education Office, or other governing body)
  • whether a module is used
  • which library the module is taken from
  • what role a user holds in the system.

These tables set out data sharing rules:

If the Jurisdictional Administrator data-sharing permissions indicator is set to 'Yes'

Role Questions from any library Modules from the national library Modules from a jurisdictional library Modules from a school library
Jurisdictional Administrator Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the jurisdiction only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for modules distributed by the jurisdiction and by all schools in the jurisdiction. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for modules distributed by the jurisdiction and by all schools in the jurisdiction. Cannot view any data.
Jurisdictional Survey Administrator Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the jurisdiction only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for modules distributed by the jurisdiction and by all schools in the jurisdiction. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for modules distributed by the jurisdiction and by all schools in the jurisdiction. Cannot view any data.
School Administrator Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only.
School Survey Administrator Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only.
School Survey Editor Cannot view any data. Cannot view any data. Cannot view any data. Cannot view any data.


If the Jurisdictional Administrator data-sharing permissions indicator is set to 'No'

Role Questions from any library Modules from the national library Modules from a jurisdictional library Modules from a school library
Jurisdictional Administrator Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the jurisdiction only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the jurisdiction only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the jurisdiction only. Cannot view any data.
Jurisdictional Survey Administrator Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the jurisdiction only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the jurisdiction only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the jurisdiction only. Cannot view any data.
School Administrator Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data at school level for own school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data at school level for own school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data at school level for own school only.
School Survey Administrator Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data for surveys distributed by the school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data at school level for own school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data at school level for own school only. Can view non-identified individual and aggregated response data at school level for own school only.
School Survey Editor Cannot view any data. Cannot view any data. Cannot view any data. Cannot view any data.

Decisions about reporting are up to the relevant school, schooling system and/or jurisdiction.

School Survey has a 'print distribution' function, which can generate individually-coded or generic print surveys.

This will depend on the way in which School Survey is used. Overall, using School Survey should reduce time currently spent on surveying and communicating response data between a jurisdiction and a school (where required). Schools will need to:

  • manage school users (if more than one)
  • manage respondents
  • construct surveys (or copy existing ones)
  • distribute surveys
  • generate reports.

All of these functions can be automated and/or batch processed (as applicable). Much work has been done during development and trial to ensure that the system is as user-friendly and efficient as possible.

Security

All data in the School Survey system is stored indefinitely in Australia, on secure servers hosted by Education Services Australia (ESA).

ESA is bound not to use or disclose any information uploaded to the system, except where required by law; however, it is still important to check that you are acting within your school privacy policy before administering surveys to members of your school community.

Results data is stored indefinitely.

System requirements

  • For PC (desktop or laptop) – Windows 7 and 512 Kbps bandwidth
  • For iPad – iOS Version 9 operating system.
  • PDF reader for printing reports and surveys
  • Excel for capturing data extracts
  • Chrome 73+ (Windows, OSX)
  • Firefox 65+ (Windows, OSX)
  • Internet Explorer 9 or above
  • Safari 12.0 (OSX)
  • Edge 17+

The web address https://www.schoolsurvey.edu.au works correctly without being added as a trusted site; however, if your browser security is set as 'high' you will need to add the School Survey website as a trusted site.

For Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, and Chrome:

  • cookies must be enabled
  • JavaScript must be enabled.

Pop-up blockers do not affect School Survey. Pop-ups open as a new tab or as a page within the browser.

Access and passwords

Access to School Survey is free to government schools in the Northern Territory, South Australia, Tasmania and Western Australia. Registration with School Survey is via email invitation. If you do not receive an invitation, or experience difficulty logging in, please contact your Jurisdictional Administrator.

All other Australian schools can purchase an annual school subscription for $330 (inc GST). Please email contact@schoolsurvey.edu.au for further information.

If you are sure that that you have been registered, but do not receive the email notification, check your Spam/Junk folder to see if the message is quarantined there. If it isn’t, speak with your School Survey School Administrator, or email or phone your support contact for assistance. If you are not sure that you’re registered, see How do I register for School Survey? under the ‘Access and passwords’ section.

Once you have successfully registered in School Survey, a registration successful page will display.

For further assistance, email the support contact for your school or jurisdiction – see How do I register for School Survey?

Your School Survey username is your registered email address.

To reset a forgotten password, follow these steps.

  1.  Go to the School Survey login page
  2.  Select the Forgot your password? link
  3.  Enter your registered email address and select Send.

You should then receive an email with a link prompting you to enter a new password. If you do not receive this notification, check your SPAM/Junk folder to see if the message is quarantined there. If it isn’t, speak with your School Survey School Administrator, or email or phone your support contact for assistance.

You can change your email address within School Survey.

  1.  From the user drop-down menu to the left of the Logout button, select Edit my profile.
  2.  Enter your email address.
  3.  Select Save.

You should receive a confirmation email at the new address. You must select the link in that message within seven days to validate the new address.

If you do not receive the confirmation email, check your SPAM/Junk folder to see if the message is quarantined there. If it isn’t, speak with your School Survey School Administrator, or email or phone your support contact for assistance.

School Administrators cannot update the email addresses of other school users. They can, however, ask users to log in themselves and update their own email addresses – see How do I update my email address?

To reset a forgotten password:

  • Go to the School Survey login page
  • Select the 'Forgot your password?' link
  • Enter your email address and select 'Send'.

You will then receive an email with a link to prompt you to enter a new password.

You can update your name within School Survey.

  1.  From the user drop-down menu to the left of the Logout button, select Edit my profile.
  2.  Enter your personal and family names.
  3.  Select Save.

Please note that you, as the user, may not re-assign a user account and login to any other person or organisation. See further details in the Terms of Use.

User guide location

From the global menu, select 'Support', 'User guides' and the appropriate user guide link.

Surveys – create or edit

Select the Create survey button at the right of the global menu bar, then select from the following two options.

  • a. Create a survey from a template – If your school is participating in the National School Opinion Survey (NSOS), use this option to create
  •    your survey. (Email or phone your support contact if you require more information about this.)
  •    Or
  • b. Create a new blank survey.

Follow the prompts and complete all the fields.

To view the survey as it will appear to a respondent, select the Online preview link below the global menu bar.

Refer to the User guides page page for more information on survey design and creation.

You can only delete a survey under the following conditions.

  • No distributions have been created.
  • From the dashboard’s Surveys section, find the relevant survey in the list and select Delete from the drop-down Actions menu at the right.
  • A distribution has been created and/or sent but no responses have been received.
  • 1. From the dashboard’s Distributions section, find the relevant distribution in the list and select Delete from the drop-down Actions
  • menu at the right.
  • 2. From the dashboard’s Surveys section, find the relevant survey in the list and select Delete from the drop-down Actions menu at
  • the right.

You can archive a survey, but not delete it, if responses have been received.

  • 1. From the dashboard’s Distributions section, find the relevant distribution in the list and select Archive from the drop-down Actions menu
  • at the right.
  • 2. From the dashboard’s Surveys section, find the relevant survey in the list and select Archive from the drop-down Actions menu at the right.

Yes, but any changes will only apply to future survey distributions.

Survey questions

Modules published to a library or inserted into a survey cannot be edited. Users must copy a module to their dashboard and then make changes. If you wish to make changes to a published module and have the correct access, first copy the module to your dashboard. Next, make your changes and then publish in the library. You may wish to delete the old version of the module, to prevent any duplication.

You can copy a national or jurisdiction module from the national or jurisdiction library to your dashboard and then edit the module. If you are required to report on module results to your jurisdiction, you must insert the corresponding module directly into your survey from the jurisdiction or national library.

Any content in a jurisdiction's library can be edited by jurisdictional administrators.

Any content in a school library can be edited by school administrators.

Survey distribution

There is no address book in School Survey. Email addresses must be loaded fresh for each distribution.

A case sensitive, unique link is generated for every new survey distribution. This link forms the last section of the survey URL. You can change this link; however, it must be unique, can only contain letters and numbers (no spaces or special characters) and cannot exceed 100 characters.

Yes. When you are in the process of distributing your survey, from the 'Upload a file' section’s Add recipients page, choose Select file. Find your file and open it. You need to format recipients' details in the format provided in one of the sample template files.

Note: any email addresses uploaded to School Survey are stored indefinitely, in Australia, and on secure servers hosted by Education Services Australia (ESA). ESA is bound not to use or disclose any information uploaded to the system, except where required by law, but it is still important that you check that you are acting within your school privacy policy before uploading email addresses.

If you choose to distribute your survey via email within School Survey, a message will display after completing the distribution steps. The message will include the number of emails sent and that the action was successful; for example, 'Successfully sent 1 email.'

Survey results - report or extract

Yes. Survey results can be exported as a data extract to a CSV file or to an Excel spreadsheet.

You can only view results through generated reports. Your ability to generate and view reports depends on your system role – see What reporting options are available?

Generated reports remain available in the system for 14 days, after which they can be re-generated if required.

To generate a report:

  • 1. From the global menu in School Survey, select Reports, then select Generate reports.
  • 2. From the drop-down Reports menu at the right, find the relevant survey in the list and select Single distribution or Multi distributions,
  • depending on your needs.
  • 3. Enter the report parameters and select Generate report.
  • 4. Wait a few minutes, then either:
  • a. from the global menu, select Reports then View reports, then find your report in the list
  • OR
  • b. check your registered email address for notification that your report is ready. The email will contain two links – select the first to download your report in the chosen format (PDF, Excel, Word or CSV), or the second to launch the 'View reports' page of the School Survey site, then find your report in the list.

To view or download any report generated within the past 14 days:

  • 1. From the global menu in School Survey, select Reports, then View reports, then find the relevant report in the list.
  • 2. Select the report name to launch the report, or select one of the options from the drop-down Actions menu at the right.

Survey results are displayed in generated reports. Select 'Reports' from the global menu, then 'View reports'. All generated reports for the previous 14 days will be displayed in the list. Select the appropriate report name to launch the report or select one of the options from the Actions drop-down menu.

Depending on your system role, survey results for any survey distributed by your school or jurisdiction can be generated in a standard report or exported as a data extract. (Note that school-level survey editors cannot generate or view any reports.)

School Survey provides the following reporting options:

Report options

Report type Periods / extent Options Summary Detail Standard report Output format: XLS, DOC, PDF Data extract
Survey Single distribution Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Multi distributions Aggregate Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Module from national or jurisdiction library Single year Aggregate Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Single year School vs School Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Single year School vs Aggregate Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Multiple years Aggregate Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Module uptake by school Aggregate Yes No Yes Not PDF No

Roles

Jurisdiction School
Report type Periods / extent Options Jurisdiction Administrator Survey Administrator School Administrator Survey Administrator
Survey Single distribution Yes Yes Yes Yes
Multi distributions Aggregate Yes Yes Yes Yes
Module from national or jurisdiction library Single year Aggregate Yes Yes No No
Single year School vs School Yes Yes No No
Single year School vs Aggregate Yes Yes No No
Multiple years Aggregate Yes Yes No No
Module uptake by school Aggregate Yes Yes No No

Users and schools – add or edit

You must be a Jurisdictional Administrator to add a school.

  • Log in as a Jurisdictional Administrator and select 'Schools' from the global menu
  • Select the 'Manage schools' option
  • Select the 'Add school' button at the top right of the page
  • Enter details
  • Select the 'Save' button.

If you are a School Administrator:

  • Select 'Administration' from the global menu
  • Select the 'Manage users' option
  • Locate the school and select 'Manage users' from the 'Actions' drop-down menu
  • Select the 'Add user' button, select a role and enter an email address
  • Select the 'Add' button.

You must be a Jurisdictional Administrator to add jurisdiction users.

  • 1. Log in as a Jurisdictional Administrator and select Administration from the global menu.
  • 2. Select the Manage jurisdiction users option.
  • 3. Select Add user, then select a role and enter an email address.
  • 4. Select Add.

Please email or phone your support contact for assistance.