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Take the Bias out of Understanding Stakeholder Feedback

Take the Bias out of Understanding Stakeholder Feedback

Take the Bias out of Understanding Stakeholder Feedback

Manually analyzing community feedback such as open-ended survey questions is not only time consuming but leads to bias. There is a better way to hear what our community is telling us.

Mar 10, 2024

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Thumbnail image: Designed by Freepik (www.freepik.com)
Thumbnail image: Designed by Freepik (www.freepik.com)

Bias is a common focus in K-12 education. This focus is necessary as empirical studies and our own experiences have highlighted the presence of bias in the classroom, curricula, textbooks, grading, and many other areas that significantly and negatively impact students. 

One commonly overlooked area where bias occurs is in data analysis of student, staff, and parents feedback.

K12 districts and schools are required to collect open-ended community feedback in the form of town halls, focus groups, individual interviews, and open-ended survey questions. To organize and make sense of the information collected - our community’s voices - leaders spend hours and hours reading and drawing out themes and important takeaways.

These findings shape district and school-level planning and decision-making. Thus, it is important that bias be eliminated.

Let’s reflect on this for a moment:  Collecting stakeholder feedback is research and it is well-established that bias is a huge risk when collecting data and analyzing that data to gain insights. That is why there are a number of methods required for trained researchers to follow such as the use of codebooks, peer debriefing, triangulation. While defining such strategies is beyond the scope of this article and not relevant for K12 administrators, as they are not researchers, the point is administrators are doing a task that is 1) time consuming, 2) required, but 3) needs additional support in order to get unbiased, valid findings.

Yet, the alternative option of hiring qualitative researchers to collect and analyze stakeholder feedback is impractical due to the time and resources and the necessity for school districts to hear and understand their community often.  
Plan Forward offers a solution: A bias- free analysis of stakeholder feedback that is organized as priorities and key takeaways. 

District and School leaders can now upload their community feedback documents such as open-ended survey questions and a trained AI-driven analysis tool codes the feedback in a similar method as a qualitative researcher, in a fraction of the time. Anti-bias mechanisms remove researcher bias such as confirmation bias.

K12 leaders now have the capability of accurately hearing their community and can be confident in their decision making.


To learn more about Plan Forward’s anti-bias planning tool, visit www.k12planforward.com or email info@k12planforward.com to schedule an informational session.

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© Plan Forward | All rights reserved

Washington D.C.

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