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School Census Autumn 2018

Publications

Preparing for the School Primary, Nursery, Special Phase

Preparing for the School Secondary Phase

Producing the School Census Nursery

Producing the School Census Middle-Primary

Producing the School Census English Secondary – PRUS – Post 16

Producing the School Census Special Phase

Producing the School Census all through

Validation Errors and Resolutions 2018-19 7.182

 

Generally Useful Links

 

 

 

Added 11/10/2018 at 12:40 DfE Validation Query 1767Q (Due to FSM protection we would not expect FSM periods to have an end date. Please provide a reason.)

The following excerpt from the lates DfE Update explains why some schools are receiving many incidents of validation query 1767Q.  It also describes the exception to the general rule regarding the exclusion FSM eligibility end date.  It is the exception form the general rule that prevented us from ignoring any end dates that have been entered by schools.

1767q – FSM end dates

5. We currently have a large number of occurrences of 1767q which triggers when an FSM end date is provided for a period of eligibility.

6. Following the introduction of the universal credit, any pupil who was eligible for FSM as at 31 March 2018 or became eligible after that date has protected status and will retain the eligibility until at least the end of summer 2023 and should continue to receive a free meal regardless of how a family’s circumstances might have changes. Please note: the protection is awarded to the individual child. If they move to live with another family member or is fostered or taken into their they will retain their protection.

7. At the end of summer 2023 the pupil will retain their FSM protection until they change phase of education. Therefore we would not expect fsm end dates to be provided for the majority of periods.

8. The only circumstances where an FSM end date should be provided are:

– A parent is aware of the protection but has stated that they do not wish their child to be recorded as fsm eligible.
– The parent qualified through support under the Immigration & Asylum Act 1999 or the guaranteed element of the pension credit and this has ended.

If either of the above apply, please provide a notepad explanation to this effect and the query will be ok’d. If none of the above apply, the fsm end date should be removed to resolve the query.

9. Please check for any occurrences of this query on your return(s) and amend as necessary.

Updated 09/10/2018 at 18:40 Possible problem with enrolment status history

We are investigating reports from several schools that statutory returns are reporting the wrong Enrolment Status for pupils where there have been changes to Enrolment Status.  We have not completed our investigations, but we think it is worth schools checking the reporting of Enrolment Status in the Census where Enrolment Status has been changed via menu route Routines | Pupil | Enrolment Status. (or for PRUs via the old menu route Tools | Statutory Returns | Update Provide Status).  If such problems have arisen where schools have changed between Enrolment Statuses indicated Guest and on roll, it would be possible for the return to ignore a pupil where it believes the student to be a Guest. A similar situation could arise if a pupil changes from/to Dual Subsidiary.

The problem described above is unlikely to be detected by the DfE validation.  We therefore strongly recommend that the reporting of Enrolment Status in School Census Autumn 2018 is checked for every pupil where Enrolment Status has been changed.  The feedback we have received from schools still suggests a very small scale problem with the data, but we are monitoring new cases to ensure that we get a full picture of the scale of the problem.

Added 08/10/2018 at 18:10 Validation error 1920 for sponsor-led academies that converted from schools

As you probably know, where our Census application detects that an academy was allocated a new Establishment Number when converting from a school, e.g. conversion from a school to a sponsor-led academy, we ensure that the DOA for each pupil is no earlier than the first date a pupil could attend the academy.  We now understand that there is an exception to this general rule, in that where a learning activity is reported that took place at the school that has been replaced, the DOA should be the DOA from the school that has been replaced regardless of when the Establishment Number changed.  Failure to take account of this exception will trigger validation error 1920 and the DfE will NOT accept a note on COLLECT to explain this.

We are looking into how we can help schools to deal with this situation.

Updated 09/10/2018 at 11:05 Possible problem with enrolment status history

We have received reports from a handful of schools that the Census is reporting the wrong Enrolment Status for pupils where multiple changes to Enrolment Status have taken place.  We have not yet had time to investigate this, but we think it is worth schools checking the reporting of Enrolment Status in the Census for pupils where they have made multiple changes to Enrolment Status.  If such problems have arisen where schools have changed between Enrolment Statuses indicated Guest and on roll, it would be possible for the Census to ignore a pupil where it believes the pupil to be a Guest.

This is probably a very small scale problem, but it is best to check where changes to Enrolment Statuses have taken place.

Added 11/10/2018 at 12:40 DfE Validation Query 1767Q (Due to FSM protection we would not expect FSM periods to have an end date. Please provide a reason.)

The following excerpt from the lates DfE Update explains why some schools are receiving many incidents of validation query 1767Q.  It also describes the exception to the general rule regarding the exclusion FSM eligibility end date.  It is the exception form the general rule that prevented us from ignoring any end dates that have been entered by schools.

1767q – FSM end dates

5. We currently have a large number of occurrences of 1767q which triggers when an FSM end date is provided for a period of eligibility.

6. Following the introduction of the universal credit, any pupil who was eligible for FSM as at 31 March 2018 or became eligible after that date has protected status and will retain the eligibility until at least the end of summer 2023 and should continue to receive a free meal regardless of how a family’s circumstances might have changes. Please note: the protection is awarded to the individual child. If they move to live with another family member or is fostered or taken into their they will retain their protection.

7. At the end of summer 2023 the pupil will retain their FSM protection until they change phase of education. Therefore we would not expect fsm end dates to be provided for the majority of periods.

8. The only circumstances where an FSM end date should be provided are:

– A parent is aware of the protection but has stated that they do not wish their child to be recorded as fsm eligible.
– The parent qualified through support under the Immigration & Asylum Act 1999 or the guaranteed element of the pension credit and this has ended.

If either of the above apply, please provide a notepad explanation to this effect and the query will be ok’d. If none of the above apply, the fsm end date should be removed to resolve the query.

9. Please check for any occurrences of this query on your return(s) and amend as necessary.

Updated 09/10/2018 at 18:40 Possible problem with enrolment status history

We are investigating reports from several schools that statutory returns are reporting the wrong Enrolment Status for pupils where there have been changes to Enrolment Status.  We have not completed our investigations, but we think it is worth schools checking the reporting of Enrolment Status in the Census where Enrolment Status has been changed via menu route Routines | Pupil | Enrolment Status. (or for PRUs via the old menu route Tools | Statutory Returns | Update Provide Status).  If such problems have arisen where schools have changed between Enrolment Statuses indicated Guest and on roll, it would be possible for the return to ignore a pupil where it believes the student to be a Guest. A similar situation could arise if a pupil changes from/to Dual Subsidiary.

The problem described above is unlikely to be detected by the DfE validation.  We therefore strongly recommend that the reporting of Enrolment Status in School Census Autumn 2018 is checked for every pupil where Enrolment Status has been changed.  The feedback we have received from schools still suggests a very small scale problem with the data, but we are monitoring new cases to ensure that we get a full picture of the scale of the problem.

Added 08/10/2018 at 18:10 Validation error 1920 for sponsor-led academies that converted from schools

As you probably know, where our Census application detects that an academy was allocated a new Establishment Number when converting from a school, e.g. conversion from a school to a sponsor-led academy, we ensure that the DOA for each pupil is no earlier than the first date a pupil could attend the academy.  We now understand that there is an exception to this general rule, in that where a learning activity is reported that took place at the school that has been replaced, the DOA should be the DOA from the school that has been replaced regardless of when the Establishment Number changed.  Failure to take account of this exception will trigger validation error 1920 and the DfE will NOT accept a note on COLLECT to explain this.

We are looking into how we can help schools to deal with this situation.

Updated 09/10/2018 at 11:05 Possible problem with enrolment status history

We have received reports from a handful of schools that the Census is reporting the wrong Enrolment Status for pupils where multiple changes to Enrolment Status have taken place.  We have not yet had time to investigate this, but we think it is worth schools checking the reporting of Enrolment Status in the Census for pupils where they have made multiple changes to Enrolment Status.  If such problems have arisen where schools have changed between Enrolment Statuses indicated Guest and on roll, it would be possible for the Census to ignore a pupil where it believes the pupil to be a Guest.

This is probably a very small scale problem, but it is best to check where changes to Enrolment Statuses have taken place.

Added 05/10/2018 at 15:40 Possible problem with enrolment status history

We have received reports from a handful of schools that the Census is reporting the wrong Enrolment Status for pupils where multiple changes to Enrolment Status have taken place on the same day.  We have not yet had time to investigate this, but we think it is worth schools checking the reporting of Enrolment Status in the Census for pupils where they have made multiple changes to Enrolment Status on the same day.  If such problems have arisen where schools have changed between Enrolment Statuses indicated Guest and on roll, it would be possible for the Census to ignore a pupil where it believes the pupil to be a Guest.

This is probably a very small scale problem, but it is best to check where changes to Enrolment Statuses have taken place.

Updated 05/10/2018 at 14:35 Multi-year learning aims (of interest to schools with sixth forms)

As many of you will know, school timetables are the main determinants of course lists and class memberships are the main determinants of course memberships. Both school timetables and class memberships are normally based on single academic years, so our course management functionality provides additional facilities to deal with courses for two or more years. These additional facilities include allowing the duration to be set to 2 weeks, 2-24 weeks, one year, two years, three years, four years or five years. They also include allowing the completion tolerance to be set to none, 1 day, 2 days, 3 days, 4 days, 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks, 1 month, 2 months or 3 months.

For example, if duration is set to 2 years for a course membership that started on the 05/09/2016 the Expected End Date will be calculated to be the 31/07/2018 (the last possible day for academic year 2017/18) and School Census Autumn 2016 and 2017 will have reported the student’s learning aim Start Date as 05/09/2016 and Expected End Date as 31/07/2018. If the student completed the learning aim on 22/06/2018 and completion tolerance is set to 2 months, School Census Autumn 2018 will report the student’s learning aim Start Date as 05/09/2016, an Expected End Date of the 31/07/2018 and an Actual End Date of 22/06/2018. We believe that all these dates are fine from a DfE point of view, as the Start and Expected End Date do not change during the three Autumn Censuses where the student’s learning aim is reported and the Actual End Date is only reported when the Actual End Date has occurred (i.e. not in the future) *1

However, now that two year courses have become so general for schools we are looking into going a bit further in helping schools with this aspect of School Census Autumn. As things stand schools are likely to have to enter a Status of ‘Completed’ manually in the Census application for multiple year learning aims that have been completed. In the example above the school would need to enter a status of ‘Completed’ for School Census Autumn 2018. Although we have provided a bulk update facility in our Census application to help schools to set the appropriate learning aims status, we are now also looking into providing a patch to default the learning aim status to the most likely status.

If we are able to provide such a patch it will be released as part of consolidated patch 3.

*1 It is important to leave Status blank (even if it has a yellow background) in Maintain Course where an Actual End Date is included for the future. If a school does not leave the Status blank when the date is for the future and before the Expected End Date, the school will not be allowed to save.

 

Added 28/09/2018 at 16:30 Census Consolidated Patch V2 & Fileset 1006 are available

Census Consolidated Patch v2 for Summer Release 2018 (patch 24330) is necessary to correct the issue in the SIMS application for schools receiving error 1992 when running School Census. This error is incorrectly produced when a yr 12/13 student has left the school during the 2018/2019 academic year prior to the Census date even though hours are present.

Import of Fileset 1006 to provide version 1.4 of the DfE validation is necessary to correct the mistake in the DfE validation.

Added 25/09/2018 at 10:15 – Dealing with validation error 2712 in a school with a sixth form

Unfortunately, there are two actions necessary for dealing with validation error 2712.

  1. Application of ‘Census Consolidated Patch v1 for Summer Release 2018’ (patch 24323) is necessary to correct the mistake in the SIMS application.
  2. Import of Fileset 1006 to provide version 1.4 of the DfE validation is necessary to correct the mistake in the DfE validation.

We expect that both of the above will be available before the end of the week.

Added 24/09/2018 at 17:10 – Fileset 1006

The DfE has decided that version 1.3 will not be their final version of their validation file, as their new validation error 2712 is reporting ‘Full-time employment indicator is missing or invalid’ for all students with learning aims and not just those students with learning aims where ‘true’ or ‘false’ is missing for ‘full-time employment’.  The DfE COLLECT validation will report this error as intended and the DfE school validation will be corrected via version 1.4 so that it also reports this error as intended.

We will provide version 1.4 of the DfE validation via Fileset 1006 as soon as possible after the DfE issues this new version to suppliers.

I apologise for the confusing position that has arisen for school with sixth forms as I result of a bug in our software and a separate bug in the DfE validation file regarding reporting of ‘full-time employment’.

Updated 24/09/2018 at 14:45 – Post-16 employment and validation error 2712 (patch 24323)

As you probably know, our school census application determines whether or not a post-16 student is in full time employment or not by checking the Post-16 Employment grid in the Additional Information panel of Focus | Student | Student Details.  Where there is a current record of ’employment in school hours that is beyond 20 hours per week’, the student is in full time employment, otherwise they are not.  Where the software has determined that a post-16 student is in full time employment, our school census application is correctly reporting this as ‘true’.  However, where we should be reporting full time employment as ‘false’, we have incorrectly applied the ‘no date no tag’ rule.  This mistake on our part has not previously been noticed, but the new 2712 validation rule introduced in version 1.3 of the DfE validation, detects this as an error for each student with one or more learning aims that is not in full time employment, i.e. nearly all post-16 students.

The ‘Census Consolidated Patch v1 for Summer Release 2018’ (patch 24323) is being developed to correct this mistake, so that ‘false’ will be report in the return file for post-16 students who are not in full time employment.  We expect to be able to make this patch available to support units via SOLUS 3 before the end of the wee

Added 20/09/2018 at 16:35 – Eligibility for FSM

School Census Autumn 2018 reports on eligibility for FSM records that were current at any point during the period 18/05/2018 (the day after the School Census Summer reference date) to the 04/10/2018 (the School Census Autumn reference date), inclusive.  Protection of Eligibility for FSM came into force on the 01/04/2018.  This means that the DfE will expect no more than one Eligibility for FSM (in England) record per pupil and for that record to have a start date, but no end date.  The Census application will not report an Eligibility for FSM End Date, even if a school has added one, but good advice is not to even attempt to add an End Date, as there are far too many variables to take into account.  For example, the government might change its mind and keep the protection for early or later than 2022.  Moreover, even if the government keep to this 2022 protection date, individual pupil might receive protect for a considerably longer period.  A pupil who 5 years old on the 31/07/2018 would be 9 years old in 2012, but would continue to have protection until they are 11 years or older on the 31st July.

We believe that the problem for schools will be dealing with pupils who have joined from a previous school and a CTF from a previous school has not been imported.  Under those circumstances a school may want to make use of the ECS (Eligibility Checking Service), but this service has not yet been modified to take account of Eligibility for FSM protection.  ECS may indicate that the pupil who has joined the school would not be eligible for FSM if they applied on the date of the check, but that does not mean that they weren’t eligible when they applied early and still eligible because of the protection.  We think that this is unlikely to be a major issue for this Census, but may become a serious issue if the ECS continues to be unaware of the protection.

Added 20/09/2018 at 14:55 – Fileset 1005

Please note that the DfE did not send version 1.2 of their validation file to MIS suppliers, as problems were found by suppliers that required further fixing.  However, we have received version 1.3 and will be including this new version in Fileset 1005.  There should be no problem with updating to Fileset_1005 from Fileset 1003 or from Fileset 1004.

We have made Fileset 1005 available to Schools from SOLUS 3 and as a download from Fileset_1005.

The DfE has indicated that version 1.3 of their validation file includes the following improvements to errors/queries compared to version 1.1.

The DfE has told suppliers that version 1.3 of their school validation file will be the last version they make available for School Census Autumn 2018.  This means that once Fileset 1005 has been applied by a school, no further Filesets in the 1000 series will be necessary for School Census Autumn 2018.  Any further problem with the DfE validation will be dealt with via a DfE known issues list and, in some cases, by an improvement to the COLLECT validation.

Error/Query
Number

DfE Description of Change

1925 Bugfix, age calculation incorrect
2005 Update to error messages
2502 Bugfix, incorrectly nested criteria
2712 Rule added
3080 Update to error messages
3090 Update to error messages

Updated 17/09/2018 at 15:15 – Date of admission

As you know, we recommend that pupils are admitted on the first day they can attend the school and not on an earlier date that might have been defined as the start of the academic year but is not a day a pupil could attend the school, e.g. a holiday or a staff training day.  Failure to follow this advice can lead to DfE validation problems for School Census.  We believe that the following excerpt from the DfE School attendance Guidance for maintained schools, academies, independent schools and local authorities is in line with this recommendation.

..

Expected First Day of Attendance

Schools must enter pupils on the admission register and attendance register from the beginning of the first day on which the school has agreed, or been notified, that the pupil will attend the school. …

 

Updated 14/09/2018 at 13:10 – Fileset 1004 (Available)

Please note that, as you will have gathered from the item posted on the 10th September, version 1.1 will not be the final version of the DfE validation.  The DfE expects to be able to provide version 1.2 in the near future, but has not given us a firm date.  With the lack of a firm date in mind, we are considering going ahead with Fileset 1004 to deliver version 1.1 of the DfE validation, although this would be followed up by Fileset 1005 to deliver what the DfE hope to be their final version.

The DfE has provided suppliers with version 1.1 of their validation file and we made this available to schools from SOLUS 3 and as a download Fileset_1004

The DfE has indicated that version 1.1 of the validation file includes the following improvements to errors/queries compared to version 1.0.

Error/Query
Number

DfE Description of Change

1550 Error message updated
1700 Error message updated
1885 Error message updated
1970 No longer requires specific school types for intake ‘SPEC’
2002 Fixed bug where NC years E1, E2, N1, N2 was not handled correctly
2115 Error deleted
2190 Error message updated
2210 Error message updated
2706 Fixed typo and updated validation
2707 Fixed typo and updated validation
2708 Now called from Pupil Status module rather than Learning Aims module. Which fixes the case where no learning aims are supplied for a pupil

Updated 10/09/2018 at 15:15 – DfE Validation

Please note that we have contacted the DfE to let them know that the validation messages the following errors/queries are not in line with their validation specification.  The DfE have acknowledged our message are their technical people are looking into this.

Sequence DfE Current Message DfE Specified Message
1741 Based on Ministry of Defence criteria, service children (ie parents designated as personnel category 1 or 2) are not eligible for free school meals. Based on Ministry of Defence criteria, Service Children (parents designated as personnel category 1 or 2) are not eligible for free school meals
3080Q Please check: take up of school lunches for pupils in reception (plus pupils aged 4 in year X) is 50% or fewer. A reason must be provided why fewer than 50% of reception pupils took a school lunch on census day. Please check: Take up of school lunches for pupils in reception (plus pupils aged 4 in year ‘X’) is 50% or fewer. A reason must be provided why fewer than 50% of reception pupils took a school lunch on census day
3085Q check: take up of school lunches for pupils in year 1 (plus pupils aged 5 in year X) is 50% or fewer. A reason must be provided why fewer than 50% of pupils in year 1 took a school lunch on census day. Please check: Take up of school lunches for pupils in year 1 (plus pupils aged 5 in year ‘X’) is 50% or fewer.  A reason must be provided why fewer  than 50% of pupils in year 1 took a school lunch on census day
3090Q check: take up of school lunches for pupils in year 2 (plus pupils aged 6 in year X) is 50% or fewer. A reason must be provided why fewer than 50% of pupils in year 2 took a school lunch on census day. Please check: Take up of school lunches for pupils in year 2 (plus pupils aged 6 in year ‘X’) is 50% or fewer.  A reason must be provided why fewer than 50% of pupils in year 2 took a school lunch on census day

 

Updated 10/09/2018 at 09:15 – Overview Presentation v2.4

Please note that version 2.4 of the School Census Autumn 2018 Overview presentation is available as a ZIP from My Account.

  • Version 2.4: Version number displayed in top right hand corner of first slide only and a slide on Filesets added to Section 2
  • Version 2.3: Slides on Enrolment Status revised and Content slide added
  • Version 2.2: Cosmetic improvements
  • Version 2.1: DfE ‘messages’ added for validations
  • Version 2.0: Major revisions to reflect DfE removal of AP placements and migration related fields
  • Version 1.1: SIMS 7 screenshots added
  • Version 1.0: First version for customers

Added 30/08/2018 at 14:40 – Fileset 1003 

This Fileset is available to support units from SOLUS 3 and as a download from Fileset_1004 and includes the baseline DfE validation and summer report files.

Added 03/08/2018 at 11:50 – Fileset 1002 should be available today

Filset 1002 will be the same as Fileset 1001 except that it inscludes the correct files for use with PI reporting.

We expect the new fileset to be available before the end of the day.

Added 31/07/2018 at 11:45 – Fileset 1001 withdrawn

Unfortunately, Fileset 1001 has been withdrawn as it includes a file that causes a problem for one of the reports in Exams PI.

We will provided Fileset 1002 with the same content as Fileset 1001 except that the correct file for the Exams PI report will be included

Added 13/07/2018 at 11:00 – Publications Documents

Please note that links to the relevant Publications documents are avaialble from the ‘SIMS Returns – School Census‘ Hot Topic.

Added 06/07/2018 at 11:10 – DfE Validation and Summary Report

Unfortunately, the DfE Beta of their validation and summary report files was not supplied to us in time for inclusion in the SIMS 7 Summer Release 2018.  However, we are working on Fileset 1001, which will include the DfE Beta files.  Early next week, I will update this newsfeed with an expected release date for this fileset.

 

Added 15/06/2018 at 16:45 – Enrolment Status for PRUs

From the SIMS 7 Summer Release 2018 changing of Enrolment Status for PRUs will take place in just one area as it does for non-PRU schools, i.e. Routines | Pupil | Change Enrolment Status.  However, PRUs will be apple to choose ‘FE College’ and ‘Other Provider’, in addition to the Enrolments Statuses available to non-PRUs.

PRUs

  • Single Registration
  • Guest Pupil
  • Main – Dual Registration
  • Subsidiary – Dual Registration
  • FE College
  • Other Provider

Non-PRUs

  • Single Registration
  • Guest Pupil
  • Main – Dual Registration
  • Subsidiary – Dual Registration

Updated 30/05/2018 at 14:10 – Overview Presentation v2.3

Please note that version 2.3 of the School Census Autumn 2018 Overview presentation is available as a ZIP from My Account.

  • Version 2.3: Slides on Enrolment Status revised and Content slide added
  • Version 2.2: cosmetic improvements
  • Version 2.1: DfE ‘messages’ added for validations
  • Version 2.0: Major revisions to reflect DfE removal of AP placements and migration related fields
  • Version 1.1: SIMS 7 screenshots added
  • Version 1.0: First version for customers

Updated 24/04/2018 at 11:05 – Nationality and Country of Birth

Please note that Nationality and Country of Birth will be included in School Census for the last time in School Census Summer 2018 and will not be included in School Census Autumn 2018

We have agreed with the DfE the following way forward.

  1. Remove the tags and data from School Census 2018/19 return xml files.
  2. Remove the columns for this data from our School Census 2018/19 detail reports.
  3. Keep the existing functionality for recording this data in place.
  4. Ensure in a future release that this data can be completely removed to satisfy any GDPR requirements.
  5. Stay in line with the DfE specifications for CTF 18 so that this data is automatically exported and imported, but in a future release allow a school choice regarding import of this data.

The DfE has not yet made its final decision regarding inclusion of Proficiency in English for the Spring Census.

Updated 24/04/2018 at 10:10 – 9 Alternative Provision Placement Items

The DfE have informed us that the following data items are being removed from the baselined specification for School Census 2018/19.

  • Date of entry to the alternative provision placement
  • Primary reason for the alternative provision placement
  • URN for the alternative provision placement
  • UKPRN for the alternative provision placement
  • Type of setting for the alternative provision placement
  • Association for the alternative provision placement
  • Attendance pattern for the alternative provision placement
  • Sessions per week for the alternative provision placement
  • Date of leaving for the alternative provision placement

The DfE have no current plans for these items to be included in a future School Census.

We have agreed with the DfE the following way forward.

  1. Leave our new Alternative Provision data entry and storage functionality in place for the SIMS 7 Summer Release 2018, but with no further development.  This functionality may be removed for a future release, once we have had time to gauge its usefulness to customers
  2. Include this data in the XML Return file where it has been entered by schools, on the understanding that it will be deleted by the DfE on upload to COLLECT.
  3. The DfE to remove the 17 validation rules relating to these data items.
  4. The DfE to remove the reporting of these data item from its summary report.

If a school is considering making use of the Alternative Provision Placements functionality, they should take into account the following guidance from the DfE.

There is no requirement from the department for this data to be collected or held with school management information systems.

Should schools decide to collect, process or retain data on alternative provision placements for their own purposes, a lawful basis for this processing must be identified by the school, as outlined in the GDPR articles 6 and 9. See the link below for further guidance from the ICO concerning lawful bases for processing:

https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-the-general-data-protection-regulation-gdpr/lawful-basis-for-processing/#ib3

  • Added 06/04/2018 at 17:20 – EYPPE renamed EYPPR 

The DfE has acknowledge that, at the point that they collect EYPP data in the Census, the EYPP funding has already been allocated to schools.  With this in mind, the DfE has changed the current EYPPE (Early Years Pupil Premium Eligibility) label to EYPPR (Early Years Pupil Premium Received).

The DfE does not expect this to change the two year old’s reported for this field, but it should avoid some confusion.  The reporting of the Reason for Eligibility in the Census will continue as previously.

Added 05/04/2018 at 14:50 – Waste of Resources 

Please note that we have informed the DfE of the quite large amount of resources we have wasted in providing functionality for the dozen items the DfE is removing from their specification.  Those resource could have been spent on enhancing other aspects of SIMS to benefit customers.  We have asked for an agenda item at the next DfE suppliers meeting where we can look at how we can ensure that this doesn’t happen again.

Added 05/04/2018 at 11:00 – 9 Alternative Provision Placement Items 

The DfE have informed us that the following data items are being removed from the baselined specification for School Census 2018/19.

  • Date of entry to the alternative provision placement
  • Primary reason for the alternative provision placement
  • URN for the alternative provision placement
  • UKPRN for the alternative provision placement
  • Type of setting for the alternative provision placement
  • Association for the alternative provision placement
  • Attendance pattern for the alternative provision placement
  • Sessions per week for the alternative provision placement
  • Date of leaving for the alternative provision placement

The DfE have no current plans for these items to be included in a future School Census.

We have agreed with the DfE the following way forward.

  1. Leave our new Alternative Provision data entry and storage functionality in place for the SIMS 7 Summer Release 2018, but with no further development.  This functionality may be removed for a future release, once we have had time to gauge its usefulness to customers
  2. Include this data in the XML Return file where it has been entered by schools, on the understanding that it will be deleted by the DfE on upload to COLLECT.
  3. The DfE to remove the 17 validation rules relating to these data items.
  4. The DfE to remove the reporting of these data item from its summary report.

Added 26/03/2018 at 18:30 – Significant Changes to the DfE Specification 

The DfE has contacted suppliers to warn us of significant changes to the baselined specification for School Census in 2018/19. With this in mind I have withdrawn my School Census Autumn 2018 Overview presentation. Some of you will know that we expected some late changes to the DfE specification, but we now understand that these changes are likely to be more extensive than we expected. We should be able to provide more details of the changes next week.

Added 22/03/2018 at 20:35 – Attendance Code ‘E’  

This is just a reminder that the DfE definition of Attendance Code ‘E’ is ‘Authorised absence as pupil is excluded, with no alternative provision made’ and therefore should not be used for sessions where an alternative provision has been arranged for the pupil.

Added 30/01/2018 at 12:00 – UAT (User Acceptance Testing) Workshop for School Census Autumn 2018 and SWC (School Workforce Census) 2018 

Our UAT workshop will take place in our Bedford office on Wednesday the 2nd May, starting at 10am in the morning and finishing around 3pm in the afternoon.  This workshops provides customers with an opportunity to test the changes we have made to the software for School Census Autumn 2018 and SWC 2018 and is not a suitable event for colleagues who need general training in these areas.

You can apply to take part in the workshop via My Account.  We recommend early application as places at the event are likely to be taken up quickly.

Added 19/12/2017 at 14:25 – Post-16 Learning Aims 

The following is not a change to the specification for Learning Aims, but you may find it helpful to know that there will be an amendment to the QN list to take account of the following ‘bands’ of technical level work placements.

   Substantial work placement    Number of hours in placement 
   Band 1    315 to 329
   Band 2    330 to 344
   Band 3    345 to 359
   Band 4    360 to 374
   Band 5    375 to 389
   Band 6    390 to 404
   Band 7    405 to 419
   Band 8    420 to 434
   Band 9    435 to 449
   Band 10    450 to 464
   Band 11    465 to 479
   Band 12    480 to 494
   Band 13    495 plus

Added 19/12/2017 at 14:00 – Service Child indicator 

From School Census Autumn 2018 onwards, Service Child indicator will be collected in all three School Censuses each year, rather then just in School Census Spring.

Added 19/12/2017 at 13:55 – Special Educational Needs (SEN) Status (DfE refer to this as SEN Provision) 

The SEN Status of “Statement” (code “S”) has been removed, as it is discontinued from the 1st April 2018.

 

Updated 22/11/2017 at 14:35 – Expected change to the post-16 aspects of the Census

The only change we are now expecting for the post-16 aspects of School Census is an extension to the list of QNs available to schools.

Product Development for Data Retention

Product Development for Data Retention

Updated with a new video of the bulk student delete process for Autumn

25/09/2018

Notification Updates

25/09/2018: After we packaged the Autumn 2018 release together for the Beta version, we continued further deep integrated testing on the last part of the student delete. This last step is to delete the central Person Record if the student role was the only role that Person had, this is explained in the video below at the point of 3 minutes and 50 seconds. Therefore, for the Autumn 2018 release of SIMS we will still include the last three data domains in the bulk student delete option, but felt it was safer to not deliver in the main customer release the last ‘Delete All Student Data’ option. We raise your awareness to this now as this option is present in the beta but will not be delivered in the release in November. If you need further clarification, please contact paul.featherstone@capita.co.uk.

28/08/2018: We have now completed the development of the bulk student delete routine in SIMS.  This builds on the initial phase which we released in the Summer version of SIMS and now allows for the complete delete of student records.

How will this work?

To help explain the process, I have recorded a video for SIMS customers to review what has been completed.  While the development is complete, we are now working on other GDPR priorities, the team would welcome feedback on the updates.  So please review the video and then provide your comments in the feedback form below.

The Video…

Additional Information

Please feel free to share this video with anyone who will benefit from knowing what new functionality will be available in the Autumn release.  The direct link is: https://youtu.be/w8sp3XFviIM

The developers are now working of some GDPR features to do with PLinks between SIMS and FMS and then will start to relax some of the rules prohibiting users to delete members of staff from SIMS.

Feedback

Knowing what you think about this routine is important, even if it is to know we are doing it right.  Please use the form below to submit your comments.

The SIMS Parent Lite App

 

With the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) coming into effect in May 2018, schools will have new requirements around the way they use pupil and parent data.

Included within your SIMS annual entitlement fee, the SIMS Parent Lite app helps schools comply with the new GDPR data requirements, by providing a simple way to collect, manage and handle information by obtaining accurate data securely from parents.

Connect up are rolling out Parent App Lite to the schools if you would like this sooner please contact us.

Sims Parent For Schools Click Here

Parent All Lite Resources Click Here

Parent App Lite FQA Click Here

For more information please email us at SIMS_Support@connect-up.co.uk

Third Party Software

Dear Customers,

We are receiving a an ever increasing number of calls, on the help desk regarding third party software products (i.e. Classroom Monitor, Medical Tracker, Call Parents, Parent Pay, Inventry etc.) and we are rapidly approaching the point where it will affect our ability to fulfil our core responsibility to school of supporting SIMS and their statutory responsibilities.

In light of this we thought it would be best to clarify the position of Connect-Up, regarding the support of third party products.

Connect-Up has the responsibility, under the SIMS SLA, to assist 3rd party suppliers apply patches, facilitate remote access for investigation and/or assisting with network or SIMS configurations required prior to installation.

We would advise any customers purchasing 3rd products to ensure they have also purchased installation from the supplier. Our recommendation for the next step with this is to contact the supplier of the software and ask them when they can install this for you.

They may need a remote connection to the server/computer that this needs setting up on, if that is the case can you please put them in touch with us as we are more than happy to facilitate a remote connection for them to fulfil the installation.

Please bear in mind that we will need an Email confirmation from a senior member of staff at the school pre-authorising us to give them access to your server/computer to make the relevant changes, this is to cover both yourselves and us under GDPR.

If the school has not got installation included in the purchase of any 3rd party software, an option for you as a school would be that if you do have a managed service contract with us, you are more than welcome to use their time as you please whilst they are in your school (that would need to be agreed with senior staff within the school and the engineer made aware before their site visit).

As a last option if installation has not been purchased and the customer is unable to setup the 3rd party product purchased then Connect-Up would have to charge for a dedicated engineer to install the product.

Connect-Up Support Services GDPR Preperations.

The upcoming changes to the data privacy law are very extensive and daunting to schools.  Connect-Up has continued its approach of producing informed briefings, toolkit focused training courses and hands-on practical workshops, in order to provide the skills your school will need to meet these new complicated and legal requirements from May 2018.

Part of the process that all schools should be doing is to check that companies who process data on your behalf are making the same preparation efforts for the new law that you in school are making.  The majority of companies are simply adding details to their websites (Connect-up are doing this as well) but this requires you to actively search for these.  Connect-Up is trying to make to process simpler by contacting you directly with our standard processor letter which explains the steps we take when processing any from you in a legal and secure manner.  Please click the link below for a copy of our letter.

Connect-Up Processor Letter

Don’t forget that the General Data Protection Regulation comes into force on the 25th of May and that we offer a wide range of training and consultancy on data protection to our schools including

All Staff Briefings

SLT Briefings

Data Lead / Chief Privacy Officer Training

Gatekeepers Training

Progress Check / GAP Analysis Consultancy

If you would like to request further information or discuss your school’s data compliance, please feel free to contact me.

Kindest regards
Peter Brookes
School Compliance Advisor/Statutory Consultant
Connect-Up Support Services

Secondary School End of Year Procedures 2018

This document describes the steps that should be followed to enable a
successful transition from one academic year to another. It includes the
creation of a new academic year, setting up next year’s registration groups
and year groups, etc. together with the promotion of pupil/students from one
year into the next.

Secondary School End of Year Detailed Procedures 2018

Secondary School End of Year Summary 2018

It is applicable to Secondary school SIMS users. Primary school users should
refer to the Primary School End of Year Procedures 2018

Primary School End of Year Procedures 2018

This document describes the steps that should be followed to enable a
successful transition from one academic year to another. It includes the
creation of a new academic year, setting up next year’s registration groups
and year groups, etc. together with the promotion of pupil/students from one
year into the next.

Primary School End of Year Detailed Procedures 2018

Primary School End of Year Summary Procedures 2018  

It is applicable to Primary school SIMS users. Secondary school users should
refer to the Secondary School End of Year Procedures 2018

Attendance Code for Snow Closures

Attendance Code for Snow Closures

If your school has had to close due to the ongoing bad weather then we would recommend that you use the exceptional circumstance code (Code Y) in SIMS Attendance.

For further guidance on your attendance code requirements please see the Guidance and Advice on School Attendance Updated August 2013 handbook, P13.

Code Y: Unable to attend due to exceptional circumstances

  • This code can be used where a pupil is unable to attend because:
  • The school site, or part of it, is closed due to an unavoidable cause; or
  • The transport provided by the school or a local authority is not available and where the pupil’s home is not within walking distance; or
  • A local or national emergency has resulted in widespread disruption to travel which has prevented the pupil from attending school.
  • This code can also be used where a pupil is unable to attend because:
  • The pupil is in custody; detained for a period of less than four months. If the school has evidence from the place of custody that the pupil is attending educational activities then they can record those sessions as code B (present at an approved educational activity).

This code is collected in the School Census for statistical purposes.

Quoted from the dfe School attendance Statutory guidance and departmental advice, August 2013 

To fill in the following information access Focus | Attendance |  Exceptional Circumstances

  • When on this screen click the NEW button.
  • Ensure your date range is set for only the sessions your school was closed (be very careful you don’t select the whole term, if you did this you could wipe out all of your attendance data!)
  • Select the group type you wish to apply the Y code too – for example, “Whole School” or a specific reg group for a partial closure.
  • Select the Y Code from the drop-down list at the bottom of the screen
  • Enter a description such as “School closed due to bad weather”
  • Click the  APPLY button, these codes will the be applied in attendance.

Kind Regards
Sims Support Team
Connect-Up Support Services
T: 0113 2105008