Principal voice matters.

The Fund aims to include that voice in its mission to increase the number of great public schools in Chicago.

78% of Chicago’s principals responded to the survey in 2019.


We invite you to explore the interactive survey data below.
Note: The report may take a few seconds to load, as it contains dynamic data from several years. We appreciate your patience!

View the Principal Engagement Survey Results in PDF
See the Survey Results in PDF

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Principal Engagement Survey? 

The Principal Engagement Survey is an annual survey of Chicago’s public school principals run by The Chicago Public Education Fund (The Fund). The survey is administered between May and July through a third-party vendor, the National Business Research Institute (NBRI), and tracks satisfaction, professional development and retention.

The Fund vets the survey questions with stakeholders, including principals. Principals take the survey voluntarily and are allowed to skip questions at any point. The Partnership shares the results broadly to help spur action to improve conditions for principals in Chicago.

Why does The Fund conduct the Principal Engagement Survey?

The Fund conducts an annual survey of Chicago principals as part of our efforts to support school leadership across our city. Principals play a vital role in school improvement, and these survey findings help inform our tailored approach to problems of practices, challenges and areas of growth.

What does The Fund do to ensure confidentiality?

The Fund takes the confidentiality of principal survey data very seriously. The survey is run through a third-party vendor, NBRI, who provides The Fund information on non-respondents during the administration of the survey. Once the survey is complete, all data is anonymized and only identifiable to The Fund by the school level, school governance, school management network and geographic network. The Fund never provides any raw data files or comments with external stakeholders. Select stakeholders, like Chicago Public Schools (CPS), get a summary of responses for each question but all information uses an n-size of at least 10 with limited available crosstabs to prevent identifiable data. The Fund also complies with all Chicago Public Schools Research Review Board requirements, including going through an Internal Review Board process.

What information is shared with CPS or Charter Networks? 

The Fund and The Partnership believe in using data to drive action. In order to make this data meaningful to improve conditions for principals, The Fund does share information with CPS and Charter leadership. All data that The Fund provides is aggregate and summary data only and adheres to the n-size and crosstab rules above.

The Fund uses individualized links to track principal respondents in order to limit the amount we reach out to principals during the survey period. Some information on who takes the survey does get shared with CPS and Charter leadership for outreach purposes but there is no way to identify how principals responded in the results provided.

What does The Fund do with the survey results? 

First, The Fund uses the results to influence planning and programming and leverages feedback from this survey to improve the way we support principals. The Fund also wants to ensure the data is useful for other partners to help improve principal conditions, including CPS, Charter Networks and other nonprofit partners. The survey results have spurred action in previous years. For example, the survey has:

  • Informed and inspired Fund programming such as the Chicago Principals Fellowship, the Summer Design Program (SDP) and Professional Learning Communities (PLCs).
  • Provided information to the public through reports, City Club events and social media communication around principal quality.
  • Informed CPS and the public about policy preferences of principals. For example, it helped shape the Independent School Principals (ISP) program, compensation and funding reform as well as other efforts.