2024 The Essentials of School Culture and Climate Survey

About the ESCC

 The Milwaukee Public Schools has used the Essential of School Culture and Climate (ESCC) Survey to inform district and school improvement efforts since 2016. The ESCC is based on the 5Essentials Survey designed by the Consortium for School Research at the University of Chicago. The ESCC is given to 4th through 12th grade students and staff in the spring of each year. The ESCC captures student and staff voice on the aspects of a school’s climate and culture that predict improvements in student performance. In 2023 only Community Schools participated in the ESCC.

View Survey Results:


Schools are included in the Essentialsofschools dashboard if their response rate for a specific group is at least 50%. This website includes different dashboards for staff, upper primary students, middle school students, and high school students. A school can be included for one (middle school students) but not another (staff) if their response rate for one group is above 50% but below 50% for another.

The Essentialsofschools dashboard has a number of advantages over the dashboard. Some of these include:

  • The ability to filter results by student, staff, and school information. For instance, the Essentialsofschools dashboard allows you to answer questions about how your Black students or your students with and IEP are experiencing your school. The Essentialsofschools respects the diversity in your students and staff and allows you to gain a much more nuanced understanding of your school climate and culture.

  • You can also make adjustments to district-wide data to make more of an apples to apples comparison with the students in your school.

  • A school’s past results are presented alongside current results simultaneously, thereby allowing for a much easier trend analysis.

  • The overall metric for each aspect of school culture and climate measured by the ESCC is much simpler and intuitive. Each overall metric is the percentage of responses in the school that show positive sentiment on the questions in that topic. For many topics, this is the percentage of students or staff who agree or strongly agree with the questions.

  • A fourth improvement is that you can easily download a school’s past results for further analysis.

The ESCC is the MPS-specific survey that includes staff and students. The Wisconsin Educator Development Support and Retention (WEDSR) is the statewide survey of educators that is part of the state’s Educator Effectiveness system. The WEDSR includes many of the same topics included in the ESCC but also includes questions about a school’s performance feedback process. Any school that has access to their ESCC staff data will also have access to their WEDSR data on the website.

SREED is the developer and administrator of both the ESCC and the WEDSR. SREED supports MPS schools to use the information to inform improvement efforts. You can learn more about the work of SREED at