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Surveying the surveyors
Since a consistent approach is important, the members of the planning team should start by surveying themselves to make sure that they agree on the purpose of greening the school grounds, the process they will use to gather information and the way it will be compiled and used.
The team should organize the surveys and be responsible for involving the whole school in gathering the data you require for redesigning your grounds.
Team members can be assigned responsibilities so that everyone on the team and in the school knows who is responsible for what aspect of the surveying process.
The sample surveys provided on this web page are intended to serve as a guide to help schools develop their own surveys according to their own site and neighbourhood.
Try writing down a list of reasons why you would like to transform your grounds. Some of the reasons most commonly cited by schools are:
Ask yourselves questions such as:
Think about how you are going to...
Compiling data and presenting results
During the surveys and brainstorming sessions, your team will ask a broad range of questions that encompass all aspects of the school's outdoor environments and the activities that take place within them throughout the year. You will have a large number of responses to compile including general feelings and specific comments about the present state of the grounds and ideas for making improvements.
Your survey results can be more-readily compiled and understood when they are categorized according to different aspects of the grounds such as space, present use, possible use, built and natural environment, problems and solutions, health and safety issues, etc.
When presenting results of the student brainstorming sessions, try sorting the comments according to these categories and then subdivide them to reflect the needs of the various age groups and programmes in your school (kindergarten, primary, junior, middle, special education, day care, after school activities, etc.). This will help people understand the reasons for redesigning the grounds to meet the play, social, educational and health and safety needs of children of different ages and abilities.