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This topic relates to statistics on the numbers and characteristics of pupils in schools in England. Further pupil information, for example, on attainment, attendance and exclusion, is covered in the School and College Attainment and Behaviour topic area.

Publications

24+ Advanced Learning Loans paid in England
Department: Student Loans Company
Presents statistics on 24+ Advanced Learning Loans taken out by Further Education learners. The learners are UK or EU domiciles studying at a Learning Provider in England.
Assembly Learning Grants Awarded to Welsh Domiciled Students in Further Education
Department: Welsh Government
Presents information on the number of Assembly Learning Grants (ALGs) awarded to Further Education students.
Atlas of Deprivation: England
Department: Office for National Statistics
The Indices of Multiple Deprivation for England combine a number of areas, chosen to cover a range of economic, social and housing issues into a single deprivation score for each Lower Layer Super Output Area in England. The Atlas of Deprivation allows a map visualisation of the overall LSOA deprivation score (rank) and the score (rank) for each of the seven domains by local authority.
Attainment by Pupil Characteristics
Department: Education
This Statistical First Release (SFR) provides information on attainment by different pupil characteristics, specifically gender, ethnicity, eligibility for free school meals (FSM), special educational needs (SEN) and English as a first language
Attendance at Grant-aided Primary, Post-primary and Special Schools (Northern Ireland)
Department: Education (Northern Ireland)
Analysis of pupil attendance at grant-aided primary, post-primary and special schools in Northern Ireland, by school and pupil characteristics.
Children Educated Outwith School and Pupil Projections, Scotland
Department: Scottish Government
Numbers of children educated outside of school due to health or exceptional circumstances, or due to parental choice.
Children with Special Educational Needs: an analysis
Department: Education
Characteristics and attainment data on pupils with special educational needs (SEN) as well as school absence and exclusion rates for this group of children. Published in response to the SEN Information Act (2008).
Compendium of Northern Ireland Education Statistics
Department: Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency
A summary of Northern Ireland Education Statistics over time.
Cross Border Flows in Education
Department: Welsh Assembly Government
This Statistical Bulletin shows data on cross border flows in education.
Destinations of Key Stage 4 and Key Stage 5 pupils
Department: Education
Education destination measures will show the percentage of students progressing to further learning in a school, further education or 6th form college, apprenticeship or higher education institution a year after they have left school or college.
Educational Maintenance Allowances Awarded in Scotland
Department: Scottish Government
Number of students supported.
Educational Maintenance Allowances Awarded in Wales
Department: Welsh Government
Presents information on the number of Education Maintenance Allowances (EMAs) awarded to students aged 16, 17 and 18 in further education in Welsh schools and further education institutions.
Enrolments at grant-aided primary and post-primary schools: basic statistics
Department: Education (Northern Ireland)
Enrolments at grant-aided primary and post-primary schools.
Enrolments at schools and in funded pre-school education (Northern Ireland)
Department: Education (Northern Ireland)
Enrolments at schools and in funded pre-school education, including breakdown by management type, religion, ethnicity of pupils.
Financial Contingency Funds in Wales
Department: Welsh Government
This Statistical Release presents information on the number of awards from Financial Contingency Funds (FCFs) for students at both higher and further education.
Follow up Survey of School Leavers from Scottish Schools
Department: Scottish Government
Sustained destinations of leavers from Scottish Schools
Further Education and Skills Inspection Outcomes
Department: Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills
Statistics on the inspection of further education and skills providers in England.
NI 103: Special Educational Needs – statements issued within 26 weeks
Department: Education
This is a publication that presents national and LA level figures from the previous academic year for National Indicator 103. This indicator has two separate elements; A) The percentage of final statements of special educational needs issued within 26 weeks excluding exception cases as a proportion of all such statements issued in the year. B) The percentage of final statements of special educational needs issued within 26 weeks as a proportion of all such statements issued in the year.
National Pupil Projections
Department: Education
A report on national projections for the number of pupils in schools
Neighbourhood Statistics - Announcement of the release of small area National Curriculum Assessment, GCSE and Equivalent Attainment and Post 16 Attainment by Pupil Characteristics in England
Department: Education
Small area pupil attainment by pupil characteristics prepared by the DfE for the Neighbourhood Statistics Service (NeSS).
Neighbourhood Statistics – Announcement of the release of small area pupil absence by pupil characteristics in England
Department: Education
Small area pupil absence by pupil characteristics prepared by the DfE for the Neighbourhood Statistics Service (NeSS).
Participation in full-time education and vocational training by 16 and 17 year olds (Northern Ireland)
Department: Education (Northern Ireland)
Participation in full-time education and vocational training by 16 and 17 year olds.
Pupil Absence in Schools in England
Department: Education
This Statistical First Release reports on absence in primary and secondary schools, city technology colleges and academies.
Pupil Characteristics and Class Sizes in Maintained Schools in England
Department: Education
Contains figures on class sizes in maintained primary and secondary schools in England.
Pupils Educated other than at School, Wales
Department: Welsh Government
This Statistical Release reports on the number of pupils educated outside of the school environment who have been missed by other data collections.
Pupils in Scotland
Department: Scottish Government
Results of the annual pupil census. Includes numbers, primary class sizes, ethnicity, disability and Gaelic medium.
Pupils with Statements of Special Educational Needs in Wales
Department: Welsh Government
Provides statistics on Pupils with Statements of Special Educational Needs and include data at Local Education Authority (LEA) and Wales level.
School Meals in Scotland
Department: Scottish Government
Information on the uptake of school meals, registration for free school meals and various healthy eating policies.
Schools, Pupils and their Characteristics
Department: Education
This Statistical First Release (SFR) is based upon information collected in the School Census. It includes information on both the number of schools and pupils, and tables showing the number of pupils by age, gender, free school meal eligibility, ethnicity, first language, and gifted and talented status. It also includes a range of class size information.
Scottish Survey of Literacy and Numeracy
Department: Scottish Government
The Scottish Survey of Literacy and Numeracy (SSLN) is an annual sample survey which monitors national performance in literacy and numeracy in alternate years, for school children at P4, P7 and S2. It also provides information which will inform improvements in learning and teaching and assessment at classroom level.
Special Educational Needs in England
Department: Education
Provides information on the incidence and placement of pupils with SEN together with analyses on the characteristics of pupils by their stage of SEN.
Special Educational Needs:
Department: Education
This publication presents national and LA level figures for National Indicator 103. This indicator has two separate elements; 103A and 103B
Student Loans in England
Department: Student Loans Company
Presents statistics on the status of student loans borrowers and the change in debt in the financial year. The borrowers are English domiciles who studied anywhere in the UK or EU students who studied in England. This publication combines the statistics previously published in: Student Loans for Higher Education in England; Income Contingent Repayments by Repayment Cohort and Tax Year - England.
Students in Higher Education Institutions in Wales
Department: Welsh Government
Provides information about students enrolled at Welsh Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and Welsh domiciled students enrolled at HEIs throughout the UK .
Women in Northern Ireland
Department: Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency
Statistics on women in Northern Ireland, labour market, childcare provision, earnings.
Women in Northern Ireland
Department: Enterprise, Trade and Investment (Northern Ireland)
Statistics on women in Northern Ireland, labour market, childcare provision, earnings.
Young Persons Behaviour and Attitudes Survey
Department: Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency
YPBAS is a school-based survey conducted among 11-16 year-olds. The research covers a range of topics such as demographics, social support, money, school, subject choices & further education, starting a business, nutrition, sport and physical activity, libraries, arts, modern technology, environment, travelling to school, road safety, policing, attitudes towards domestic violence, anti-social behaviour and personal safety, knife culture, smoking, alcohol, drugs and sexual experience & knowledge.
Youth Cohort Study & Longitudinal Study of Young People in England
Department: Education
Statistics based on survey responses to YCS and LSYPE and brings together data about the family environment, attitudes to school, risky behaviours, engagement, attainment and post-16 participation.

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Overview

A range of pupil-level data is collected for the following school types: maintained and direct grant nursery schools, maintained primary schools, maintained secondary schools, city technology colleges, academies, maintained and non maintained special schools and pupil referral units. A range of pupil characteristics data is therefore available, such as:

  • gender
  • age
  • whether a pupil is known to be eligible for free school meals
  • whether a pupils’ first language is known or believed to be other than English
  • ethnicity
  • special educational need
  • gifted and talented status

A range of school characteristics data is also available, such as:

  • number of schools by type
  • the status and religious character of schools
  • schools by size
  • average class size

Pupil characteristics data are matched to attainment data enabling, for example, analysis of attainment by ethnicity or SEN status (see School and College Attainment and Behaviour topic area).  

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Technical Data

The School Census covers maintained and direct grant nursery schools, maintained primary schools, maintained secondary schools, city technology colleges, academies, maintained and non maintained special schools. Information is collected on a termly basis.

The Pupil Referral Unit (PRU) Census requires each Local Authority in England to return information on all PRUs run, managed or funded by the authority. Information is collected on an annual basis.

Information on pupils in Alternative Provision (not PRUs) is collected at local authority level on an annual basis.

Information on pupils in Independent schools and General Hospital schools is currently collected at school level only, with the aim of moving to pupil level in the future.

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Glossary

  • Class size

    The School Standards and Framework Act 1998 places a duty on LAs and schools to limit the size of infant classes for five, six, and seven year olds taught by one teacher to 30 or fewer pupils. The Education (Infant Class Sizes) Regulations 1998 allow the limit of 30 to be exceeded in limited circumstances. In very limited, prescribed, circumstances, this allows children to be treated as “excepted pupils” for the purposes of ascertaining whether or not the class size limit has been exceeded. Paragraph 2.58 of the School Admissions Code describes the exceptions.

  • Ethnic group

    Those pupils who have been classified according to their ethnic group and are other than White British are defined as Minority Ethnic.

  • First language

    First Language is the language to which a child was initially exposed during early development.

  • Free School Meals Eligibility Criteria

    From 6 April 2009, children whose parents receive the following will be entitled to receive free school meals - income support, income-based Jobseekers allowance, support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999, Child Tax Credit (provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit) and have an annual income that does not exceed £16,040 (as assessed by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs), where a parent is entitled to Working Tax Credit during the four-week period immediately after their employment ceases, or after they start to work less than 16 hours per week, their children are entitled to free school lunches, the Guarantee element of State Pension Credit, Children who receive an eligible benefit in their own right are also eligible.

  • Gifted and talented

    Gifted and talented learners are defined as those who have one or more abilities developed to a level significantly ahead of their year group (or with the potential to develop those abilities). Gifted describes learners who have the ability to excel academically in one or more subjects such as English, drama, technology. Talented describes learners who have the ability to excel in practical skills such as sport, leadership, artistic performance, or in an applied skill.

  • Special educational need (SEN)

    Arrangements for identifying and providing for children with SEN are set out in Part IV of the 1996 Act (and, prior to this, the 1981 and 1993 Education Acts). New rights and duties have been introduced by the SEN and Disability Act 2001 (SENDA). A Code of Practice, issued in 1994, supported the rights and duties in the 1996 Act. A new SEN Code of Practice was introduced in January 2002. All LAs, schools and early years settings must have regard to it. The new Code of Practice replaced the five stages with School/Early Years Action, School/Early Years Action Plus and Statements of SEN.

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Contact Details

For statistical enquiries about this topic, please contact:

Department for Education, Schools Data Unit

Email: Schools.statistics@education.gsi.gov.uk

Telephone: +44 (0) 870 000 2288 Minicom/textphone: +44 (0) 192 879 4274

Department for Education Sanctuary Buildings Great Smith Street London SW1P 3BT

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