School census - Spring 2019

School Census Spring 2019

Helpline, new items and changes to items


It is a statutory requirement for all Nursery, primary, secondary, special and PRS/PRU schools to submit a DfE Schools Census return every term under Section 537A of the Education Act 1996 meaning schools do not need to obtain parental or pupil consent to the provision of information, it ensures schools are protected from any legal challenge that they are breaching a duty of confidence to pupils and helps ensure that returns are completed by schools. 

School Census 18-19 sees the deletion of three items, Proficiency in English, Pupil Nationality and Country of birth.   There are no new items but there are some changes to existing items. Brief details are included here, links are provided on the main Census page.

Data protection and data sharing

The Extract from DFE guidance states

‘The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) mandates certain safeguards regarding the use of personal data by organisations, including the department, local authorities and schools. GDPR gives rights to those (known as data subjects) about whom data is processed such as pupils, parents and teachers. This includes:

• the right to know the types of data being held

• why it is being held

• to whom it may be communicated

For the purposes of data protection legislation, the terms ‘process’, ‘processed’ or ‘processing’ apply to any activity involving the personal data, such as:

  • collecting
  • storing
  • sharing
  • destroying
  • etcetera – please note: this list is not exhaustive

The sections below provide additional information on two aspects of data protection legislation - namely privacy notices and data security. However, as data processors and controllers in their own right, it is important that schools process all data (not just that collected for the purposes of the school census) in accordance with the full requirements of the GDPR. Further information on the GDPR can be found in the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) overview of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Legal duties under the General Data Protection Regulation: privacy notices

Being transparent and providing accessible information to individuals about how you will use (process) their personal data is a key element of GDPR. The most common way to provide such information is through a privacy notice. Please see the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) website for further guidance on privacy notices.

For schools, this means that you must provide clear and accessible privacy notices that inform parents, pupils and staff:

• what data is collected about them

• for what purposes the data is collected

• how the data is used (processed)

• what the lawful basis is for processing

• for how long is the data retained

• with whom the data is shared

• why the data is shared

The department provides suggested wording for privacy notices that schools and local authorities may wish to use. However, where the suggested wording is used, the school / local authority must review and amend the wording to reflect local business needs and circumstances. This is especially important, as the school will process data that is not solely for use within census data collections. As such, to comply with GDPR, the privacy notice should contain details of all uses of data within the school, which may include, for example, information used locally for pupil achievement tracking and (where relevant) the use of CCTV data. The privacy notice should also include this link to the webpage, which provides information on how the department processes data.


It is recommended that the privacy notice is included as part of an induction pack for pupils and staff, is made available on the school website for parents, as well as featuring on the staff notice board / intranet. Privacy notices do not need to be issued on an annual basis, where:

  • new pupils and staff are made aware of the notices
  • the notices have not been amended
  • they are readily available in
    • electronic, or
    • paper format

However, it remains best practice to remind parents of the school’s privacy notices at the start of each term (within any other announcements / correspondence to parents) and it is important that any changes made to the way the school processes personal data are highlighted to data subjects.

Legal duties under the General Data Protection Regulation: data security

Schools and local authorities have a (legal) duty under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to ensure that any personal data they process is handled and stored securely. Further information on data security is available from the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Where personal data is not properly safeguarded, it could compromise the safety of individuals and damage your reputation. Your responsibility as a data controller extends to those who have access to your data beyond your organisation where they are working on your behalf; for example, where external IT suppliers can remotely access your information. The ‘10 steps to cyber security’ and ‘School procurement: selecting a school MIS’ pages provide further guidance and advice.

It is vital that all staff with access to personal data understand the importance of:

• protecting personal data

• being familiar with your security policy

• putting security procedures into practice

As such, you should provide appropriate initial and refresher training for your staff.

Where schools chose to use cloud software services, additional information on handling data securely within such environments is available within the department guidance on data protection for schools considering cloud software services.

Collection of pupil characteristics from parents / guardians or pupils

Whilst it is not possible for a parent / guardian or an individual pupil to opt out of the school census collection; the following data items:

• ethnicity

• language

• service child indicator

must always be reported as declared by the parent / guardian or the pupil (where a pupil is deemed mature enough to have capacity to understand and agree to share their personal data with others).

Further guidance on the collection of these data items is available in the DFE guidance section 5.3 and this must be followed in conjunction with the requirements outlined in the sections  below on Data subject right of refusal and Data subject right of retraction.

Data subject right of refusal

When collecting the data items listed above from the parent / guardian or pupil schools must ensure that they are made aware of their right to decline to provide data on pupil nationality and country of birth. Where they exercise this right, the information is returned in the census using the code ‘refused’.

When is it appropriate to collect information direct from a child / pupil?

Information may only be requested directly from a child / pupil where they are deemed mature enough to have capacity to understand and agree to share their personal data with others.’



Spring Census January

The spring census is on Thursday 17th January 2019 forms the basis of Early years element of the Dedicated School Grant, Pupil Premium funding, Early years Pupil Premium and along with the autumn and summer census, Universal Infant School Lunch funding.  Other information collected includes data on absences, exclusions, extended childcare hours, class organisation, monitoring of Infant Class sizes, class size 30.  Please ensure all pupil information is accurately recorded and up to date. The accuracy of Census data is also important because pupil addresses are used to assess the socio-economic characteristics of the pupil population, and so provide a context for the assessment of schools' performance. Accordingly, the DfE recommends that schools send parents (or older pupils themselves) a data sheet showing what information is currently held by the school about the pupil and have in place a process to update the MIS data.

Key items for this Census

Early Years funding - reminder

Schools with onsite early years funded provision make their return via EITHER the school census OR the early year’s census, BUT NOT BOTH. This paragraph sets out which census is to be used to return data on children receiving funded early education:

• Registered pupils of the school (2, 3 and 4 year olds depending on the statutory age range of the school) are recorded via the school census (and not the early years census)

• Children (aged 2, 3 and 4) attending a separate Ofsted registered PVI provider on a school site, are recorded via the early years census (and not the school census)

• Children attending s27 (governor run) provision should be either:

  • recorded via the school census if they are registered pupils of the school (can include 2 year olds if the school’s statutory age range covers 2-year-olds); or
  • recorded via the early years census if they are not registered pupils of the school
    However, where a child’s free entitlement is split between more than one setting / school, such children may appear on the two different censuses.

National curriculum year groups – all schools – every census

Two year groups have been added to allow school MIS to record very young children, this does not extend the scope of who should be recorded in the school census and this remains children on the schools admission register receiving education.        

Y12 – Y14 children aged 16 - 18             (DOB 01/09/1999 - 31/08/2002)

Y1 – Y11 children aged 5-15                  (DOB 01/09/2002 - 31/08/2013)

R – Reception children aged 4-5             (DOB 01/09/2013 - 31/08/2014)

N2 for children aged 3-4                        (DOB 01/09/2014 - 31/08/2015)

N1 for children aged 2-3                        (DOB 01/09/2015 - 31/08/2016)

E2 for children aged 1-2                       (DOB 01/09/2016 - 31/08/2017)

E1 for children aged 0-1                       (DOB 01/09/2017 - 31/08/2018)

It is envisaged that children turning 2 years old would fall into the ‘E2’ year group and, if on the schools admission register and in receipt of education, be included within your census return. Any younger children falling into the ‘E1’ year group would not be expected to be in receipt of education and hence should not be on the schools admissions register. As such, if there is a need to record children in ‘E1’ within your MIS, these should be recorded with an enrolment status of ‘Guest’ and not brought through into the census.

The "Funded Hours” and "Hours at Setting" nursery, primary and special schools – every census and records hours to two decimal places. Please note: this is a decimal of hours and therefore does not record hours and minutes.  See the conversion table below.





Decimal minutes


Decimal Minutes


Decimal Minutes




























































































































Pupils aged 2 and 3 at 31st August 2018 should record the total number of hours they spend in education provision at the school. Hours at setting should reflect the actual hours the pupil attends the setting for educational provision regardless of who pays.

Please ensure that these pupils are correctly recorded as part time/full time, in Sims this means ensuring the part time details box is completed with a relevant date range.

Pupils aged 4, at the 31 August 2018 with and NC year group of N2 will be eligible for nursery funding up to 15 hours only but may be eligible for an additional hours under the extended childcare provision if parents are eligible and have a valid 30 hour code

Pupils aged 4 at the start of the Academic year in Reception and above are funded as full time equivalent pupils and are funded via the dedicated school grant and funded hours for this group of pupils is no longer required.

Extended Childcare hours Collected in each census for eligible pupils for whom funded hours are collected. The data item is for pupils aged 3 and 4 who are in ‘E1’, ‘E2’, ‘N1’ or ‘N2’ only and who have working parents with a valid 30-hour code. Hours are collected to two decimal places, this is not hours and minutes, please see conversion chart in funded hours item.  Maximum hours recorded in this field are 15 and should not include the hours funded under the universal entitlement for free early education.  Pupils who are in ‘Reception’ or above are not eligible for extended childcare hours, as they are in full-time education. 

30 hour-code indicator The 30 hour code is an 11 digit integer that is required for pupils to claim extended childcare hours.  This applies to pupils aged 3 and 4 as at the 31 August-year old pupils the 30 hour code indicator confirms the eligibility of working parents to access the additional 15 hours of extended childcare.  The code once issued remains fixed and refers to a parent/child combination, parents with two children will have two separate codes.  The school must confirm the code’s validity with the LA.  Early years finance will provide information on how to check these codes.

Disability access fund indicator (DAF indicator) For 3 and 4-year old pupils (not in Reception), this new field records whether a child is in receipt of disability living allowance and is receiving free early education.  Pupils aged 4 at the 31 August in Reception are not eligible for DAF funding.  Full information about this is available in the Early Years National Funding Formula (EYNFF) operational guidance.

2 Year old basis for funding this data item records the criterion on which a pupil aged 2 as at 31 August, has been funded. 

ECO – Economic criteria

HSD – High-level SEN or disability

LAA – Looked after or adopted from care

This item is collected in the Spring only.

Early Years Pupil Premium - The early years pupil premium (EYPP) is additional funding for early years settings to improve the education they provide for disadvantaged three and four-year-olds.

Children become eligible for early years pupil premium from the term following a child’s third birthday and retain this entitlement until they move into ‘Reception’, when they become eligible for the ‘mainstream’ pupil premium.

The data collected via the spring census will be used by the department to determine the early years pupil premium allocation that the department provides to local authorities to fund their early years providers.

The following is the cohort of children for whom early years pupil premium data are required.

Dates of birth are as at 31/08/2017

3 year olds                                                        DoB between 01/09/2014 and 31/12/2015

4 year olds (only those in N1 and N2)                 DoB between 01/09/2013 and 31/08/2014

Pupils aged 4 (at 31/08/2018) are usually in Reception – do not complete the EYPP field for these pupils. Those 4 year olds in reception who are eligible for FSM will be allocated Deprivation Pupil Premium through the school census from the eligibility periods entered on your MIS.

Eligibility is for those pupils receiving any funded hours of early education and who meet the benefits related criteria for FSM (not UIFSM), or are in the care of the local authority (England and Wales), or have left care (in England and Wales) through

      • Adoption
      • Special Guardianship
      • A child arrangement order

Schools will be required to select the reason for eligibility from the list below, we anticipate that only the top 2 reasons EE or EO will be relevant, (for Capita Sims Users this item is updated using Tools>Statutory Return Tools> Update early years and will be a drop down list alongside the Hours at setting and funded hours fields)

  • RE - eligible through economic reasons: where they are eligible via the benefits related criteria for FSM
  • RO - eligible through other reasons: where they are eligible due to being in care or due to leaving care through adoption, a special guardianship order or a child arrangement order
  • RB - eligible through both reasons: where they are eligible through both economic and other reasons
  • RU – eligible through unknown basis: where the school knows the child is eligible for EYPP (due to receiving funding from the LA) but does not necessarily know the reason why they are eligible
    Pupil Premium for 2019-20 is allocated using data from the Spring Census, previous census returns, other  returns completed by the Local Authority and  data from the Ministry of Defence. Looked after children (LAC) meeting the criteria to attract pupil premium are reported to the DFE through the Children’s Social Care Team.  The data is not collected through the Census return
  • applies to pupils aged 4 and above at 31 August 2018 in Reception to year 11 only. 
  • is based on FSM eligibility (Not Universal Infant Free School Meals, these are 2 separate data items),
  • applies to service children indicator recorded in the 2019 Spring School Census, and
  • applies to pupils ever recorded on the school census as adopted from care, leaving care under a special guardianship order, a residence order or a child arrangement order.
  • FSMEver6 is calculated using ended periods of FSM eligibility in this and previous census returns already submitted. 
  • ServiceEver6 is calculated using data submitted in previous census returns for any pupils who were previously reported as service pupils but no longer have the indicator. Along with pupils in receipt of a War Pension (WPS) Armed Forces and Reserve Forces Compensation Scheme (ACFS) pension from the MOD.

Schools are reminded that pupil premium is allocated to the school the pupil was attending in January 2019.  Note that The Looked After Element is calculated from a separate return and allocated by the The Virtual School Head.

Previously Looked After Arrangements (PLAA) – all schools – every census

Pupils can only be included in this area if you have been advised by the parents of the circumstances and seen evidence the pupils were previously looked after. If you are uncertain about if a pupil has been previously you can contact the but do not include any personal details and one of the team will contact you to discuss the circumstances.  Alternatively if you have an Egress secure email account you can email who will try to assist with your query. Please ensure details of any pupils that have post looked after details are included on your return – in some systems these need to be transferred through each term for each census.

Schools should ensure this data is included on each return

N - Not declared

A - Ceased to be looked after through adoption

G - Ceased to be looked after through a special guardianship order (SGO)

R - Ceased to be looked after through a residence order (RO)

C - Ceased to be looked after through a child arrangement order (CAO)

Service Child - A ‘service child’ has parent/s or person/s who is/are currently service personnel serving in:

  • In regular HM Forces military units
  • Full commitment as part of the full time reserve service
  • In the armed forces of another nation and stationed in England
  • Exercising parental care and responsibility

Please note that reserve units are not classed as the regular armed forces and such pupils are not recorded as service children on the school census. The school must not ascribe the service child indicator to the pupil. This information must come from the parent / guardian or pupil. Valid codes are:

  • • ‘Y’ (yes)
  • • ‘N’(no)
  • • ‘R’ (refused)
  • • ‘U’ (unknown) to indicate no response given or other reason for no information

This field defaults to ‘N’ to reduce the burden on schools and schools will only change entries for children from service families.

The service children indicator is only relevant to children whose parents are designated as personal category 1 or 2 which are shown on the GOV.UK website. However, all parents will be aware of their personal category. From the above link, you will see the following definitions: 

  • Personal status category 1 (PStat Cat 1)
    Those in PStat Cat 1 will meet one of the following qualifying criteria:
    • a legally married member of the armed forces, who lives with their spouse, or who would do so but for the exigencies of the armed forces
    • a member of the armed forces, who is registered in a civil partnership in accordance with the civil partnership act 2004; or is in a civil partnership under an overseas scheme recognised under that act; and who lives with their registered civil partner; or who would do so but for the exigencies of the armed forces
  • Personal status category 2 (PStat Cat 2)
    Those in PStat Cat 2 will be a member of the armed forces who has parental responsibility within the terms of the children act 1989 for a child(ren) and who satisfies all of the following conditions:
    • can properly be regarded as the centre and prime mover in the life of the child(ren)
    • provides a home where they normally live with the child(ren) except where unable to do so for reasons attributable to their service in the armed forces
    • provides, where the child(ren) is unable to care for itself, a child carer who can look after the child(ren) during their absences attributable to their service in the armed forces. The child carer must not be the other natural parent of the child(ren). The other natural parent should normally only have staying access to the child(ren) for an aggregate of 56 days in any 12-month period. Staying access greater than this may render the service person ineligible for PStat Cat2 (these restrictions on access do not apply while on recognised unaccompanied duty)
    • accepts financial responsibility for the child(ren)
    Whilst schools should return this data item for all their pupils, PRU / AP should only return it for those pupils whose enrolment status is NOT ‘S’ - current subsidiary (dual registration).

Changes to Free School Meal eligibility following the change to Universal Credit

To minimise the impact of the rollout of universal credit and the introduction of a net-earned income threshold to determine eligibility for free school meals, transitional arrangements have been put in place to ensure that no pupil loses a meal as a result of these changes.

Transitional protections should be awarded as follows:

  • any claimant who is in receipt of free school meals on 31 March 2018 should continue to receive free school meals until the end of the universal credit roll out period, and then until their phase of education ends. This covers until at least Summer 2023, and applies even if their circumstances change and they would no longer meet the eligibility criteria.
  • any claimant who gains eligibility for free school meals from 1 April 2018 will continue to receive free school meals until the end of the universal credit rollout period, and then until their phase of education ends. This covers until at least Summer 2023, and applies even if their circumstances change and they would no longer meet the eligibility criteria.

FSM end dates are not expected to be reported by schools during the transitional period – with the exceptions being:

  • where a parent has been informed of the FSM protection and they have still indicated that they do not wish the child to be recorded as FSM eligible and receive a free school meal. This should not be confused with a parent’s request to end a free school meal claim with a change in their circumstances which are now protected
  • where a pupil transfers from another UK country – their non-English FSM must have an FSM end date. Parents would be expected to make a new claim.
  • claimants who qualify through support under the Immigration & Asylum Act 1999 or the guarantee element of the Pension Credit, their benefit(s) will not be replaced by universal credit and therefore the pupil’s FSM entitlement will not be protected. They will only be entitled to a free school meal as long as they retain the benefit. In such cases where the parent has notified the school that these benefits have ended an FSM end date should be recorded.

FSM Eligibility - the Census collects any period of eligibility that started on or before the 17January 2019.  It is expected that there will not be end dates on eligibility except in the circumstances listed above.  Eligibility which ended prior to 4 October 2018 will not be collected, please check FSM eligibility carefully. 

FSM taken – Spring only (this is a separate field from Universal Infant Free School lunches)

Schools should record the total number of pupils who took a free school meal at lunch time on census day, including both day and boarding pupils, unless the situation was abnormal, in which case the figure is based on the next normal day.  Pupils who have met the free school meals eligibility criteria who are also eligible for Universal Infant Free School Meal (UIFSM) should be included in this figure but do not include pupils who are in receipt of a free school lunch only as a result of the UIFSM entitlement. The DFE Summary Table 8 lists numbers that you have recorded as taking a FSM (economic)

Universal Infant Free School meals (UIFSM) - School Lunches Taken – Termly collection

Schools should indicate whether any Reception Year 1 or 2 pupils have taken a ‘school lunch’ on census day. This will be collected from all school types in each census for pupils in the following age range (regardless of whether they are eligible for FSM using economic criteria).

All pupils on roll on census day in, Reception, Year 1 or Year 2 plus any pupils not following the national curriculum (NC year Actual = X – applies to special schools only) and born between 01/09/2011 and 31/08/2014.

Note: Pupils taking UIFSM should not be entered as having FSM eligibility unless your school have been advised they meet the economic criteria to claim FSM and the details are shown in the School admissions module.  If your school is not using the Local authority to check and confirm FSM eligibility the details will not appear on the module.


Ethnicity is provided for all pupils aged 5 and over as at the previous 31 August. Ethnicity is a personal awareness of a common cultural identity. Ethnicity relates to how a person feels and not how they are perceived by others. It is a subjective decision as to which category a person places themselves in and does not infer any other characteristics such as religion, country of origin etc.  Ethnicity monitoring advice is available from the DFE website. Where the ethnicity has not yet been collected this is recorded as ‘NOBT’ (information not yet obtained). If a pupil or parent has refused to provide ethnicity, REFU’ (refused) is recorded and returned.

Following a consultation some additional categories have been added to the ethnic codesets however the changes apply to the extended codeset only.  North Yorkshire continues to use the Main codes only not the extended codeset.  Please ensure your school is recording only the main codes, if you have applied an extended category the full list of codes is available in the guidance notes so you will be able to amend the code to the main category.  Below is the list of main category codes which are in use by North Yorkshire. The full codeset including the extended categories is available in the Main Census Guidance – please refer to that if you need to amend an ethnicity to the Main category.


Main category





White – British



White – Irish



Traveller of Irish heritage



Any other white background



Gypsy / Roma



White and Black Caribbean



White and Black African



White and Asian



Any other mixed background

Asian or Asian British



Asian or Asian British



Asian or Asian British



Asian or Asian British


Any other Asian background

Black or Black British


Black Caribbean

Black or Black British


Black – African

Black or Black British


Any other Black background

Other Ethnic Groups



Other Ethnic Groups


Any other ethnic group




Information Not Yet



Information not yet obtained



This item must not be ascribed by the school – this information must always be populated after consultation with the parent/pupils or via a data collection exercise.

  • Language - all schools including Nursery schools – every census

This has been expanded to include nursery pupils and the age restriction which limited the item to those pupils aged 5 and above has been removed so this item applies to all schools and pupils.  This item is collected on a termly basis for all pupils both on and off roll with the exception nursery schools who need only collect this for on roll pupils

Top-up funding the DFE is currently proposing to use the top-up funding indicator in the new high needs national funding formula that will be introduced in 2018-19.  In addition, the indicator will be used for further research into high needs funding and for benchmarking information to local areas. Whilst this item is used as a checking tool for pre-16, it is used for the calculation of funding for Post 16 pupils so it is essential this is correctly populated. This item is collected each term.

Exclusions - are collected for pupils both on and off roll and are collected 2 terms in arrears.

Spring 2018 will collect exclusions with start dates between

  • 02/04/18 (Easter Monday) and 31/08/2018


  • Attendance sessions possible and absence sessions are collected for the period between 01/08/2018 and 31/12/2018 
  • Please check for missing marks and absence code N.  Absence Code N – no reason yet given is an ‘Unauthorised absence ‘. There should not be any instances of code N on your Census – any sessions where a reason has not yet been given should, by the time of the Census, have been followed up and amended to an appropriate reason or if no reason is given then the code should be amended to Absence code O – Unauthorised absence.  In light of the change to a 10% threshold for persistent absence, I would urge schools to follow up an absence where no reason is provided as soon as possible.  Please also see notes about dual registrations in Common Issues and errors.

It is essential that absence data is returned correctly as the department publishes this data.

‘Absence data are collected termly at pupil level through the school census and published at national and local authority level through the school absence national statistics releases. The underlying absence data, at a school level, is published alongside the absence national statistics.

The department publishes the attendance data collected in respect of 4 year olds. However, these data do not feature as part of the standard measures of attendance.

  • Dual Registration - A DfE reminder about attendance and absence recording Schools should record the pupil's attendance and absence for those sessions that the pupil is scheduled to attend their school only. The remaining session(s) when the pupil is attending another school will be marked in the register using Code D, This will not be included within the attendance data submitted in the Census for that school. The number of sessions possible for a dual registered pupil against the main school should exclude those when the pupil is due to attend the subsidiary school and vice versa. This does not change schools' obligations with respect to safeguarding and they must follow up all unexplained and unexpected absences in a timely manner.
  • Persistent Absence Methodology

Schools are judged against a persistent absence rate of 10% and pupils are identified as persistently absent based upon their individual absence level rather than a comparison to a national threshold.

SEN stage of provision

All data items in this module are maintained on an event driven basis. SEN provision is collected for all pupils on roll on the relevant census day. All other data items are only available on schools’ MIS for those pupils with pupil SEN provision equal to:

• ‘E’ (education, health and care plan) or

• ‘K’ (SEN support)

This data item will be collected in the census collections for all pupils on roll on census day. SEN provision at the time of any exclusion will also be collected in all school census collections (see codeset in section 8).

Code ‘K’ – SEN support continues without change for all other types of SEN.

Pupil SEN need type




Specific learning difficulty


Moderate learning difficulty


Severe learning difficulty


Profound & multiple learning difficulty


Social, emotional and mental health


Speech, language and communication needs


Hearing impairment


Visual impairment


Multi-sensory impairment


Physical disability


Autistic spectrum disorder


Other difficulty / disorder


SEN support but no specialist assessment of type of need


NSA ‘Please note: Schools are expected to identify a type of need for all children at SEN Support - there is no requirement for a pupil to have a specialist assessment to be recorded in the main SEN types. The No Specialist Assessment code (‘NSA’) should only be used in those very rare instances where a pupil is placed on SEN support (Code ‘K’), but the school is still assessing what the primary need is. This might occur, for example, where a child on SEN support has transferred into the school shortly before school census day. Where code ‘NSA’ is to be used, the pupil MUST have SEN Provision of code ‘K’. Code ‘NSA’ must not be used without the pupil having an appropriate SEN provision in place.’

Member of SEN unit indicator.  Used only for pupils with SEN Provision of E S or K (not for use by Special or PRS) This indicator identifies pupils with SEN who are members of an SEN unit. SEN units are special provisions within a mainstream school where the children with SEN are taught mainly within separate classes.


• are designated by the local authority specifically for making SEN provision, and sometimes accommodate pupils registered at other schools on a part-time basis

• receive funding of £10,000 per place, and usually top-up funding for the excess costs of additional support required by individual pupils (see 5.3.15)

• cater for a specific type or types of SEN (for example autistic spectrum disorders)

• are usually for pupils with statements of SEN or an education, health and care (EHC) plan (but may also provide support for pupils with code ‘K’ - SEN support)

Schools and academies should only use this indicator where the SEN unit has been formally recognised as such by the local authority where the school is located: in cases of doubt, the school should check with the local authority. Most pupils placed in units will have the unit written into their statement of SEN / EHC plan. It is unlikely that a child would be placed in a unit and also receive support from resourced provision, but a school could have resourced provision for one type of need and a unit for another.

Member of Resourced Provision indicator. Used only for pupils with SEN Provision of E S or K  (not for use by Special or PRS)

This indicator identifies pupils who receive support for their type of SEN from a specialist-resourced provision. Resourced provisions are where places are reserved at a mainstream school for pupils with a specific type of SEN, taught mainly within mainstream classes, but requiring a base and some specialist facilities around the school.

Resourced provisions:

• are designated by the local authority specifically for making this kind of SEN provision

• receive funding of £10,000 per place, and usually top-up funding for the excess costs of additional support required by individual pupils (see 5.3.15)

• cater for a specific area or areas of SEN (for example specific learning difficulties)

• are usually for pupils with statements of SEN or an education, health and care (EHC) plan - but could include pupils with code ‘K’ (SEN support)

Schools and academies should only use this indicator where the resourced provision has been formally recognised as such by the local authority where the school is located: in cases of doubt, the school should check with the local authority. Most local authorities include details of what will be provided through a resourced provision in a pupil’s statement of SEN / EHC plan. It is extremely unlikely that a child would be placed in a unit and also receive support from a resourced provision, but a school could have resourced provision for one type of need and a unit for another.

Class information – Classes as Taught

The selected time for the recording of how classes are taught on the day of the Spring Census is based on the last digit of a school DfE establishment number as follows:

•           If the number ends with a 0, 1 or 5 - one hour / period before the end of morning school.

•           If the number ends with a 2, 3 or 6 - one hour / period after the start of afternoon school.

•           If the number ends with a 4, 7, 8 or 9 - one hour / period after the start of morning school.

Where the selected time is not appropriate to the school timetable (for example, if the selected time is when the whole school or a large proportion of the school is in an assembly with the head teacher) schools should choose an hour / period that reflects a ‘normal’ class situation that applies at the selected time each Thursday of the term (see paragraph 2.1). Do not record unusual situations (such as class amalgamation or school closure) which may have occurred on census day due, for example, to staff training or absence, severe weather conditions or religious observances. Schools are reminded that pupils not in school at the selected time should be added to the reconciliation area, this includes part-time, private study, work experience, FE colleges and those at another school and classes not meeting at the selected time should not be included on the return.

Mixed Year Group and Mixed Key Stage Classes

Schools are reminded that a class of pupils with mixed year groups is not necessarily a mixed key stage class.  A class of pupils containing NC yr1 and NC yr2 is not a mixed key stage nor is a class of pupils in NC yr3- NC yr6. 

An example of a mixed Key stage would be those with EYF Stage and NC yr1 or a class with NC yr2 and 3.  This is key for correctly identifying Infant Classes and therefore identifying classes in breach of the Infant Class Size 30 regulations.  Any classes with a class name of Yr1/2 but recorded as a mixed key stage will be queried by the LA.

Infant Class Size 30

Primary and all-through schools with infant classes are asked to ensure that the selected period is one in which their infant classes are engaged in an ordinary teaching session. Infant class are those where the majority of pupils turn 5, 6 or 7 during the course of the school year, an ordinary teaching session does not include school assembly or any other school activity usually conducted with large groups of children such as:

• PE / games

• music

• singing

• drama

• watching television

• listening to the radio

If the infant classes are engaged in one of these activities please change the selected time for the whole school to a time when infant classes would be engaged in activities like numeracy and literacy or other academic activity. Please refer to the Census guidance notes for full details on the Infant Class size regulations – Class size 30 is still monitored and authorities are challenged where this is breached. Please email to details of the class name and the excepted reason and how many pupils that applies to but do not include the individual pupil’s names, we will be contacting you after the Census if you do not provide us with the reason for the class which breaches the infant class size rule.

Reasons for excepted pupils are listed below.

Exception reasons:

 a) children admitted outside the normal admissions round with a statement of special educational needs / education health and care plan specifying a school

b) looked after children and previously looked after children admitted outside the normal admissions round

c) children admitted, after initial allocation of places, because of a procedural error made by the admission authority or local authority in the original application process

d) children admitted after an independent appeals panel upholds an appeal

e) children who move into the area outside the normal admissions round for whom there is no other available school within reasonable distance (the local authority has to confirm that the child qualifies under this category)

f) children of UK service personnel admitted outside the normal admissions round

g) children whose twin or sibling from a multiple birth is admitted otherwise than as an excepted pupil

h) children with special educational needs who are normally taught in an special educational needs unit attached to the school, or registered at a special school, who attend some infant classes within the mainstream school

These children will remain an ‘excepted pupil’ for the time they are in an infant class or until the class numbers fall back to the current infant class size limit.

Childcare Details – spring census only

This item is a mandatory item and will appear in the Spring Census only. 

The aim is to capture the following 4 scenarios and an entry should appear for each scenario at every school:

  • Before School childcare service
  • After School childcare service
  • Holiday childcare service
  • Childcare for Children aged between 0-4 Years
    Information about each of these items is required as follows,
  • Details of whether these services are on or off site,
  • details of opening/closing,
  • how many weeks it is open,
  • how many places and
  • who provides the service.

For Capita Sims users this information is entered in the School Details panel under Childcare – this is not the extended services options but a separate panel on the school details page


Opening Time

Closing Time

No. childcare places


(Accept from) Other schools

No. of weeks

Before School







After School














Under 5's








Pupil Address - Unique property reference number (UPRN)

 A unique property reference number (UPRN) is a unique alphanumeric identifier for every address in Great Britain and can be found in the ordnance survey (OS) AddressBase products. It provides a comprehensive, complete, consistent identifier throughout a property’s life cycle – from planning permission through to demolition. The UPRN remains a voluntary data item to be returned alongside the full address in either BS7666 or address line structure). The collection of UPRN should be relatively ‘invisible’ to data providers with the burden managed by the way addresses are processed within school systems. Schools are not expected to collect, or look up, the UPRN and instead this would be automatically populated within your school system when entering addresses if the OS AddressBase database is used as a reference. For schools and / or systems not using AddressBase there will be no change and they will continue to use either BS7666 or Address Line formats for submitting addresses.


Secondary schools need to ensure their Youth Support Services (YSS) assent data is accurate for each pupil aged 13 or older.  The Values of ‘UNS’ unsought, ‘SNR’ Sought No Reply and ‘No’ are treated as ‘No’, where these are present the LA will not pass data to YSS, other than data that it is legally required to under the Education and Skills Act 2008.  Where a value of Yes is reported an extended dataset will be passed on to YSS. Pupils/parents need to opt in to allow the LA to pass additional information to the YSS.

Unique Learner Numbers – this is a mandatory field for pupils in secondary, special and PRS aged 14-19. Please ensure these are assigned for all pupils on or off roll who were still on the roll of your school when they reached age14.

Learner support Code (bursary funding for 16-19 year olds)

This indicates the type of financial support awarded to pupils beyond compulsory school leaving age at any point in the academic year of the schools census.  This can include pupils who have left the school since the start of the academic year.   This is administered locally by providers and the LA’s who receive their funding allocation directly from the ESFA. There are a number of bursary codes but the census collects only the following two codes. 

  • Vulnerable bursary  Code 55
  • Discretionary bursary Code 56

DFE School Census guidance notes

The DfE Census preparation and guidance documents are available for download below. Use of these to help schools maintain their data throughout the year should ensure that Census causes as little extra work as possible.  

Information Commissioners Office

Guidance on Cloud Software Services 

Submitting your data

Schools can continue to use Anycomms to transfer your files to the LA who will then submit them to the DFE using COLLECT.  If we have been unable to set up Anycomms at your school, the file must be uploaded to COLLECT which is now accessed through the new  DFE Sign-in arrangements.  Schools should have migrated their accounts to the new site. Once signed in you should have access to the Collect website.

Collect Reports

Once your data has been loaded, validated and submitted to COLLECT, there are a number of reports available to schools which can help to identify any issues with your data.  Choose the option ‘Launch Reports’ from your Home screen in Collect

  • Pupil Numbers Reports
  • UIFSM Reports
  • FSM Summary

These can be used to supplement any reports provided by your supplier

Duplicate Reports can also be run from this area – this will help to identify any issues with UPN’s as well as pupils being claimed by more than one school.

Reminder - Use of census data for registering pupils for key stage 2 test

We would like to encourage all schools with pupils in year 6 to get their data loaded into COLLECT as early as possible, in advance of the return date, even if that data is still in the process of being quality assured locally. As you may know, the standards and testing agency (STA) receive a provisional extract of the spring school census for year 6 pupils based on data as at close on 7 February to populate the system for registering pupils for the key stage 2 national curriculum tests. Where census data is not available, or has not been returned, STA will be reliant on schools to manually enter these pupils into the pupil registration system to ensure they are correctly registered for the key stage 2 tests.


Known  Issue

Fileset 1102

Capita Sims have issued a revised fileset to resolve the following queries

2500, 2470 and potentially 2502 which relate to attendance missing on your return.  Schools ICT have authorised this update so should have updated on your system through Solus.  If your IT manager does updates manually or if you buy your support through the supplier directly you may need to check if this has been done.  Any of these errors which remain after the update has been completed should be checked as these will be genuine errors which require correction.



Census Helpline                       0844 875 3922

  • Wednesday 16 January 2019 9am – 4.30pm
  • Thursday 17 January 2019 9am - 4.30pm
    For help outside of these dates please use the following contact numbers
    Data and Intelligence
    Alison Busby               01609 532324   
    Mark Grosvenor           01609 532956
    Technical Support
    Schools ICT                 01609 536086