A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

2023 Impact Kentucky survey shows educators are beginning to feel more optimistic, despite challenges


More of Kentucky’s educators are feeling positive about the teaching profession in the 2023 Impact Kentucky Working Conditions Survey. On Tuesday, the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) released results from the latest survey, which asks all certified school staff a variety of questions about their working conditions.

The Impact Kentucky Survey, formerly the TELL Kentucky survey, is administered every two years. Certified educators working at least half-time are given the opportunity to provide input on teaching conditions that can be used to inform improvements within schools, districts and statewide.

Educators responded 78% favorably to questions about staff-leadership relationships, 2% higher than the previous report. The greatest increase was seen in emotional well-being and belonging with a 7% increase.

A total of 34% of educators reported a favorable response regarding the emotional well-being of their colleagues because of their work, and 55% reported a favorable response regarding their own emotional well-being.

“Last survey, we clearly saw the strong effects the pandemic had on educators and the system. The current survey offers encouragement with all areas of data moving in a positive direction, but KDE and districts must continue to value feedback from all stakeholders,” said KDE Associate Commissioner Byron Darnall.

Interim Commissioner of Education Robin Fields Kinney said these survey results show important improvements and areas that are still in need of support.

“Our educators are working to create a better future for Kentuckians and their students,” said Kinney. “It’s important to review the results so the department, districts, schools and families can know where they can make a change to encourage growth within the education field, as well as provide support for those already in it.”

A total of 50% of educators said they have adequate school resources. A total of 86% of educators said the quality of resources at their school needs to improve.

“Now is the time for innovation and action to support educators as they work on supporting our students and encouraging future educators,” said Kinney.

The full 2023 report and results can be viewed on the Impact Kentucky website. The results are open to the public and include statewide, district and school-specific results. The survey was administered by Panorama Education, in partnership with KDE.

KDE is offering professional development opportunities to help schools and districts implement changes following the review of the 2023 survey data. These opportunities include:

• Getting Started with Impact Kentucky Results (School Leaders and School-Based Users)

• Impact Kentucky: From Inquiry to Impact (District and School Leaders and School-Based Users)

The Impact Kentucky Survey was designed by a Steering Committee made up of teachers, principals, superintendents, parents, and other education stakeholder groups from across the state upon the switch from the TELL Survey to the current survey administered by Panorama. The committee provided guidance and perspective in the development and implementation of the survey.

“Thank you to everyone who provided guidance in the development of this survey,” said Darnall. “The committee was key to ensuring a broad representation in the process.”

More than 39,000 certified employees responded to the survey, and approximately 33,000 of those were teachers. The survey, administered Nov. 1-Dec. 15 focused on:

• Professional learning;
• Feedback and coaching;
• School leadership;
• Staff-leadership relationships;
• School climate;
• Resources;
• Managing student behavior;
• Educating all students; and
• Emotional well-being and belonging.

Darnall said this survey is a tool available to school-level personnel to make continuous improvements within their own schools and districts.

“The survey is a tool for improvement at the local level and ideally a vehicle for creating positive learning environments for both students and adults,” said Darnall.


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