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Office of Planning and Research

VOCAL Student Pilot Survey Project, 2017

VOCAL is an annual survey sponsored by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. In 2017, DESE piloted survey items. Participating students were asked to share their views on three dimensions and nine topics of school climate:

  • Engagement
    • Cultural and linguistic competency
    • Relationships
    • Participation

  • Safety
    • Emotional safety
    • Physical safety
    • Bullying and cyber-bullying

  • Environment
    • Instructional environment
    • Discipline environment
    • Mental health environment

The 2017 VOCAL surveys were administered to students in grade 5, 8, and 10. 51,384 fifth graders (73%) participated in the survey, along with 50,334 eighth graders (70%), and 47,106 tenth graders (64%).

2017 VOCAL Pilot Survey Findings

Executive Summary and Descriptive Reports

Executive Summary

Download PDF Document
Massachusetts 2017 Executive Summary

Descriptive Reports

State 2017 pilot report — coming soon
Download Word Document
VOCAL 2017 validity report — updated

2017 VOCAL Pilot Sample Report and Guidance Materials

The sample reports reflect the school climate data provided to schools and districts during the pilot year. These reports were accompanied by supporting guidance materials, provided below. With the exception of the Interpretive Guide, these documents were embedded within the reports provided to schools and districts.

Sample Reports and Guidance Materials

Sample Reports

Download PDF Document
District Summary Report

Download PDF Document
School Report

Guidance Materials

Download PDF Document
Annotated Report (layout and data elements within each district and school report)

Download PDF Document
School Profile (description of a relatively strong, average, and relatively weak school climate in Massachusetts)

Download PDF Document
Interpretive Guide (scoring, analyses strategies, and resources)

How index scores are calculated — coming soon

2017 Pilot Survey Content

The surveys that were administered in 2017 can be viewed by below.

Download PDF Document
Grade 5
Download PDF Document
Grade 8
Download PDF Document
Grade 10

Last Updated: November 12, 2019

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