Andover High School has recently committed to working with Visions Incorporated, a consulting company that is developing a positive cultural direction for our school.  Principal Conrad said that the survey was rescheduled due to the snow days earlier in March. The new date of the survey is Monday, April 10th and will be 45 minutes long, according to Principal Conrad. Students will be asked questions concerning the climate at Andover High School and the impact that the environment has had on their education.

Ms. Costagliola, Administrative Assistant to Mr. Conrad, said that the feedback that the students have given back about the survey has so far been encouraging. “I think there’s been a good diverse group of students who have responded and are interested in being a part of it,” she said, adding that “[Visions Inc.’s] focus is to really bring kids in that are serious about having their opinions heard. I think that they have a good strong group of them.”

After the survey, the next step that AHS will be taking as a community is to address the changes that need to be made in our school. Costagliola stated that the information will be collected just as the school collected information when they were asking students about whether or not they wanted a junior-senior prom. She also said that Visions will collect data to find a solution that they feel “will be embraced by the majority of the school community to move forward in a positive direction in terms of cultural and climate.” Visions Inc. hopes to help AHS become a place where everyone feels comfortable and accepted, someplace where people can work together in accord.

As for the current cultural environment at AHS, Costagliola thinks we are off to a good start. “I think that it’s getting better every year,” she said. “The leadership and the stability of the leadership has certainly contributed in a positive way, and I think that the kids are developing pride and enthusiasm for the things that go on here. They want to be supportive of each other, so I think that we’re on the right path. I think that a survey like this will refine what our goals need to be so that we can get back a real sense of school spirit and tolerance and community for everyone.”

When asked what she would like to see as an outcome personally, Costagliola replied that she would love to “see there be a more collaborative spirit and a better sense of community.” She thinks that “over the past few years, because of all of the different principals we’ve had and the transition the high school has been in because of that, it’s been hard to focus on that sense of community.” Her hope is that after the data is analyzed and definitive actions can be put into place, we’ll have a better sense of togetherness in the building.

By Livia Iwanicki