Producing the School Census Spring 2024 Primary
Producing the School Census Spring 2024 Secondary
Producing the School Census Spring 2024 All Through
Producing the School Census Spring 2024 Special
Producing the School Census Spring 2024 PRU
The DfE school census website can be found here.
Acceptable Notepad entries can be found here.
Errors and Resolutions
ESS have produced a help guide which addresses a variety of errors…should you encounter any. These errors are listed by their error code in the document attached and correspond with the one shown in SIMS in the errors and queries section of your return. Click here to see the document.
Submitting Your Census
Stockton Borough Council – Submitting to Information and Improvement
Click here for instructions on preparing for your census.
Please contact Information and Improvement if you’re unsure how to submit your census to them.
Academies and Collect
For Academies please note that you need to submit your file to DfE via collect as well as the local authority. Information can be found in the appropriate completing the census in SIMS document. DfE guidance can be found here.
Click here to view acceptable notepad entries for Collect.
Filesets relevant to School Census Autumn 2023
This fileset includes version 1.0 of the DfE validation and summary report files for School Census Autumn 2023. Version 1.0 is known as the baseline and should be regarded as the minimum version for finalising a School Census Autumn 2023 return file. Which means that Fileset 2503 should be regarded as the minimum fileset for finalised a School Census Autumn 2023 return file.
Fileset 2503 has been created and has completed its first stage of testing. If all goes to plan, we expect to be able to provide the fileset during week beginning the 18th of September.
This fileset will include version 1.1 of the DfE validation and summary report files for School Census Autumn 2023. Version 1.1 corrects flaws in DfE validation errors 2492 and 3125 and corrects the heading for Table 14 of the DfE summary report.
Fileset 2504 is now being planned and I will provide an indication of the likely release data as soon as that information is available.
Attendance Code ‘X’
As you know, Attendance Code ‘X’ should only be applied for pupils where their age at the preceding 31st August indicates that they are not of compulsory school age. Or to put it another way, Attendance Code ‘X’ should only be used for pupils who were aged 4 or below or were aged 16 or above on the preceding 31st August.
The DfE has added validation error 2492 to check for this misuse of Attendance Code ‘X’. However, the DfE’s first attempt at coding this new validation in their baseline validation file is flawed in that it will trigger where ‘X’ has been used for pupils aged 16 or above on the preceding 31st August of the term being reported.
Fileset 2503 includes the DfE baseline validation, but we will include a corrected version of the DfE validation in Fileset 2504. As Fileset 2503 provides the DfE baseline validation, the DfE will be happy for schools to finalise their school census return when they have imported Fileset 2503 rather than waiting for Filest 2504. The DfE will also be correcting validation error 2492 on DfE COLLECT.
Permanent Exclusion Final Review Date
Following receipt of a revised DfE specification for inclusion of permanent exclusion, as described below, we have taken account of the change via CDP 2 (or above) and Fileset 2503 (or above). Links to the newsfeeds for these two areas is provided via the ‘buttons’ above.
As you may know, the DfE has provided guidance to schools indicating that a permanent exclusion can be included in the return even if its final review date is after the specified date range for inclusion of permanent exclusions, if it is before the census reference date.
We have asked the DfE to add this caveat to its specification for School Census Autumn 2023. The DfE hasn’t provided this update in time for us to take it into account for the SIMS Summer Release 2023. However, once the revised specification is provided by the DfE, we will provide a patch to bring our functionality in line with the DfE’s revised specification.
This issue is not as serious as it might seem, as the DfE collects exclusion data twice and if a permanent exclusion is missed out for the autumn collection of the data it will still be included for the spring collection of the data.
Although the DfE has not yet been able to provide us with an update to its specification, due to a change of its accessibility software, we have received an email from the DfE that the update will soon be provided in line with the following example.
- If a pupil was permanently excluded during the summer term 2023, with the exclusion being upheld prior to census reference day for the School Census Autumn 2023, it is expected that the permanent exclusion is returned for the first time in the School Census Autumn 2023.
- If a pupil was permanently excluded during the summer term 2023, with the exclusion being upheld on or after census reference day for the School Census Autumn 2023, but prior to census reference day for the School Census Spring 2024, it is expected that the permanent exclusion will be returned for the first time in the School Census Spring 2024.
Our Business Analyst, Ruth Vincent, has suggested the following wording for the DfE specification, which has clarified the DfE position very well for the development team and me.
If a pupil was permanently excluded during the exclusions collection period, but the final governor review decision to uphold the exclusion was made after the exclusions collection period but prior to census day, the DfE expect the permanent exclusion to be returned in that census.