'Tell them from me' – student survey

Claire Melloy, Director of Student Development

Claire Melloy, Director of Student Development

By Claire Melloy, Director of Student Development

One thing that visitors to Radford invariably comment on is the welcoming feel of the campus. Our school culture is, on the whole, an extremely positive one. We want every student and all who come to work at Radford to feel valued, accepted, respected and included.

Recent national and global events have highlighted how quickly group cultures can change and the implications of such change. As a result, it is important for us to test our impressions and assumptions to ensure that we maintain and nurture the positive culture that we all value.

In order to do this, we will be asking students for their views through the Tell Them From Me survey (TTFM). Many schools in Australia and around the world have used this survey as part of their school improvement plans. It is a well-researched and tested tool.

Tell Them From Me - logo

The TTFM survey will provide the college with insight into student engagement, wellbeing and effective teaching practices at school, from the perspective of students.

The survey also provides insights into students’ perceptions about learning climate, student–student relationships, teacher–student relationships and their own academic success.

The survey is confidential, voluntary and will be used over time to identify trends within the college and to better inform college priorities. It will allow us to gather evidence and baseline data for planning purposes to identify strategic directions for school improvement. 



The secondary school survey questions relate to the following 22 measures: 

  • sense of belonging
  • interest and motivation
  • positive relationships
  • participation in co-curricular activities
  • participation in sports
  • truancy
  • valuing school
  • homework behaviour
  • behaviour at school
  • effort
  • skills and learning challenge


  • feelings of worry or sadness
  • teaching relevance
  • teaching rigour
  • effective learning time
  • experiences of being bullied
  • advocacy at school
  • positive student-teacher relations
  • expectations for success
  • positive learning climate
  • advocacy outside school
  • student aspirations.



The primary school survey questions, for Years 4-6, relate to the following 15 measures: 

  • Participation in sports
  • Participation in co-curricular activities
  • Sense of belonging
  • Positive relationships
  • Valuing school outcomes
  • Behaviour at school
  • Homework behaviour
  • Interest and motivation


  • Effort
  • Skills and learning challenge
  • Effective learning time
  • Teaching relevance
  • Teaching rigour
  • Experience of being bullied
  • Advocacy at school


More information about the survey will be sent out next term, including an opt-out option.

When using this data to assess future school priorities, we will also be conscious of how we best upskill our students to navigate their future. Interestingly, the OECD has just released The Future of Education and Skills – Education 2030 which has highlighted some key competencies they refer to as 'Transformative Competencies':

  • Creating new value: underpinned by adaptability, creativity, curiosity and open-mindedness.
  • Reconciling tensions and dilemmas: they argue that in order to be prepared for the future, students will have to learn to think and act “in a more integrated way, taking into account the interconnections and inter-relations between contradictory or incompatible ideas, logics and positions, from short and long-term perspectives.”
  • Taking responsibility: this is a prerequisite of the previous two. Central to this is the concept of self-regulation (which I have written about before, and which is one of the Secondary School Learner Traits) which involves self-control, self-efficacy and adaptability. 

[Click for information about the OECD’s work in this area

Finally, last week marks 50 years since the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr, a man who dedicated his life to love and justice.

'Not long', he would say when asked when they would reach the Promised Land. 'How long? Not long, because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.'

A reassuring thought.

Wishing you all a peaceful two-week break from homework, lunches and uniforms.

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