Anonymous Student Survey Provides Insight Into Student Life at La Salle


Regan Russell, Staff Reporter

On average, La Salle students spend about two to three hours a night doing homework and most feel stressed out at least some of the time. Despite this, a majority of students seem to enjoy going to La Salle.

These results were found in an anonymous survey given to students in their Falcon Formation classes earlier this year. This survey had a series of questions, ranging from basic demographic information about students’ ethnicity/race, to deeper questions about stress, drug and alcohol use, and bullying.

La Salle’s administrative team created this survey to understand what goes on with students, and to find out if they are doing a good job at keeping the school as safe and positive of an environment as possible.

Approximately 610 students took the survey, and the results were reviewed and discussed by the school leadership and a group of teachers, who then decided to share this information with the student body by providing the Falconer with a copy of the results.

The survey revealed both positive and negative results. For example, about 70% of students report receiving mostly A’s and B’s in school. However, about 44% report feeling stressed every day.

One result that the administrative team has decided to work harder to improve was the amount of students who said our school has a fairly poor school spirit.

About 55% of students think the La Salle school spirit could be better, including 23% of students who report that it is “not at all true” that we have strong school spirit.

To help with this issue, the school has several initiatives planned, but Mr. Devine also says that school spirit “has to come from the students… I have been to other schools for basketball games and lots of other events and it’s different. There is definitely an upward trend in school spirit [here] as well, but we need the students to [help] initiate that.”

One example of this is that “we have seen some terrific, inclusive student-led spirit over the last two years at football games especially, with the Tailgating Club and with the calendar of dress-up dates created by Reece Wible and Tori Goodman,” said Mr. Devine. “Seeing bleachers full of students with face paint and Falcon gear makes Friday nights a lot more fun,” and Mr. Devine is hoping that the student body will continue to step up in this respect.

A big concern for La Salle’s administrative team that was validated in the survey results is the high stress levels that many students face. “[This is] one of the reasons we were looking at schedule changes [given] the amount of homework that students are dealing with,” said Mr. Devine.

Lack of sleep is one factor that may be influencing students feeling stressed. Around 35% of students say that they average only six hours of sleep on a school night, 29% report about seven hours, and only 13% say they get eight or more hours. The school’s leadership has high hopes that next year’s schedule change will lower the nightly homework load, and as a result, help with overall levels of student stress.

One startling finding from the survey is that many students do not feel comfortable talking to an adult in the La Salle community when experiencing safety and health concerns, with only about 27% saying that they always feel comfortable sharing these concerns. “We want to make sure that students feel comfortable talking to adults in the community,” says Mr. Devine. “That is something we will be talking about as an administrative team.”

However, the majority of students say that it is either pretty much true or very true that at La Salle there is an adult “who really cares about me” (73%), “who tells me when I do a good job” (76%), and “who always wants me to do my best” (82%).

A rather positive finding in this survey was the low amount of illegal substance use in the student body. Compared to most schools and national averages, La Salle’s percentages of students reporting use of marijuana, alcohol, and other substances was fairly low.

“I think we have a pretty realistic perspective on [substance abuse],” Mr. Devine said. “It seemed pretty realistic to believe some of our students are using some of those things. I felt better about seeing [the overall data that shows that] most of our kids are not involved in that kind of stuff.”

Some of the other notable findings:

  • About 71% of students report that they either get mostly A’s (31%) or A’s and B’s (40%).
  • Only about 7% of students report being in a physical fight, while about 93% say they never have.
  • About 89% of students say La Salle is a safe place to be.
  • Only around 13% of students report to frequently hearing about other students being high, intoxicated, or involved in sexual activity, with 48% saying they hear about this happening occasionally, and 39% saying that they almost never hear about it.
  • More than 95% of students say they have never driven a car after drinking or been in a car that was driven by a student who had been drinking.
  • More than 50% of students say it is fairly easy or very easy for other students to get alcohol or marijuana (in general, not at school).
  • About 77% of students agree that they regularly get help on schoolwork from their teachers when they need it. Only about 5% disagree.
  • Around 91% of students say they have never posted or sent an inappropriate picture of themselves to another student via text or social media, while only about 8% say they have.

Mr. Devine says that the school leadership team plans to continue to reflect on the results of this survey and anticipates that they will administer this same survey again in the future, so that they can track results over time.


Students: What do you think about these results? Let us know in the comments below!