Parent Opinion Survey Frequently Asked Questions

From Term 1 2017, Victorian government and Catholic schools will use the new Victorian Curriculum F-10. Curriculum related information is currently being reviewed and may be subject to change.

For more information on the curriculum, see:
The Victorian Curriculum F–10 - VCAA

When does the 2017 Parent Opinion Survey take place?

The 2017 Parent Opinion Survey will be conducted online between Monday 7 August 2017 and Sunday 27 August 2017.

What is new in the 2017 Parent Opinion Survey?

The refreshed survey is aligned with the new Student Attitudes to School Survey and three of the key priority areas outlined in the FISO:

  • excellence in teaching and learning
  • positive climate for learning
  • community engagement in learning

In addition to the FISO priority areas, a key focus for the Parent Opinion Survey is the Education State ambition: Pride and confidence in our schools.

Like the Attitudes to School Survey, the Parent Opinion Survey is now online for faster turn-around time on results and improved data quality.

What are the benefits of the refreshed survey?

The survey will be administered from a secure online survey platform to provide the following benefits to schools and parents:

  • the online survey provides flexibility for parents to complete the survey at any time that fits their own schedules
  • schools and parents are no longer required to manage and return paper data forms
  • schools will be able to access their own survey results from this portal after the survey has closed, shortening the turn-around time on survey results
  • parent responses are confidential, and parents can be reassured that schools are unable to link responses to individuals.

How is the confidentiality of parent responses being protected?

The information that is collected from each parent will be kept confidential at all times. Confidentiality will be maintained by ensuring that:

  • information that could identify individuals, such as names and dates of birth, will not be asked in the survey
  • ORIMA Research and the Department will not know which parents have been selected to participate in the survey
  • survey links are distributed to parents by the school at random
  • all survey data that is made available to the school or Department, or for any other reports, will be for groups of parents only – no individual person will be able to be identified in the results.

How is the privacy of parents being protected?

Schools will be responsible for directly contacting parents to invite them to participate, and providing them with the survey link.

The supplier administering the Parent Opinion Survey (ORIMA Research Pty Ltd) will not have any direct contact with parents. ORIMA Research will not be provided with the contact details of parents, or be given the names or any other personal identifying information about the parents invited to complete the survey.

Furthermore, the Department does not release any personal identifying data to schools or the supplier administering the Parent Opinion Survey. The survey itself also does not request that any personal identifying data is provided to protect the confidentiality of survey responses.

Do schools need to inform all parents about the 2017 Parent Opinion Survey?

The annual Parent Opinion Survey is mandatory for schools to participate in; it is an important part of parent engagement and assists with future planning and improvement.  It is important to notify parents of the survey and of the move to an online survey.

How do schools manage parents who do not have connected devices?

Parents can complete the survey using any connected device even mobile phones. Schools are requested to make a computer available at the school for the use of parents that do not have access to a connected device to complete the survey or for parents who require assistance with translations. Schools can organise this computer access in any way that is feasible for the school and the parent community.

How do schools manage survey translations?

Language guides for survey translations to assist relevant parents in answering the survey are available from the Department. For further assistance, email:

What happens when parents are asked to answer questions about all their children and teachers at the school, and they have different opinions based on individual children or individual teachers?

Parents are asked to generalise and form an opinion about the school or teachers. As the data is not intended for discussion relating to individual teacher performance, the fact that it is generalised is not a disadvantage.

What can schools do with the survey results?

Schools can use the data in a number of ways, to:

  • monitor levels of student engagement and wellbeing
  • compare school level data on engagement with state-wide benchmarks
  • stimulate discussion within the school community about how to improve parent engagement
  • assist in the identification of areas for improvement and professional development needs in the school.

What will the Department do with the data?

The Department will be able to aggregate all the parent data and develop a state-wide picture of perceptions of school climate, parent community relationships, student engagement and confidence in the government school system, to be used in monitoring the impact of initiatives and programs.

No individual parents will be personally identified in any data.

Will the data be made public?

Data from the school satisfaction measure is used to report levels of parent satisfaction in the Government School Performance Summary.