5. Conducting the census count
Principals should use these Guidelines to classify students as Student Resources Package (SRP) funded or non-SRP funded and record this funding status on CASES21. Student enrolment details that prove eligibility for SRP funding must be retained for verification purposes.
It is the responsibility of principals to ensure that the school has a sound, well understood and reliably implemented process for recording and verifying student attendance throughout the school year.
Principals should arrange for attendance rolls to be examined to ensure that both SRP and non-SRP funded students are counted in accordance with census attendance criteria. Use the CASES21 Enrolment Census application to exclude from the census count students who do not meet the attendance criteria.
An examination of manual rolls and CASES21 or other electronic attendance records may be necessary to confirm that students are correctly included in census counts. It is strongly recommended that principals who rely on electronic or CASES21 attendance records have February attendance verified by the relevant class teacher, home-group teacher or year level coordinator prior to finalising the census return.
Enrolment and attendance records and other documentary evidence that prove a student’s eligibility to be included in census counts must be retained for verification purposes.
Principals should refer to the CASES21 Enrolment Census Process Guide for detailed instructions on preparing their student data in CASES21.
Funding Certification Report
The Funding Certification Report produced when the Census application is run in CASES21 will identify all students potentially ineligible for SRP funding based on their age or visa details. Principals must ensure that documents to support the inclusion of these students in the census counts is retained at the school and available to produce during an enrolment verification.
Significant Absences Report
The List of Students with Significant Absences report produced in the CASES21 Census application includes all students who have been absent more than 20 percent of the time up to census day. The report specifies the total number of days absent and the number of approved days absent. Principals should examine the report and ensure that all students are appropriately classified for inclusion in census counts with respect to the criteria for counting students.
Enrolment verifiers will check attendance records for all students listed on the Significant Absences report during an enrolment verification. Principals should ensure that documentation to support all absences is available, including documentation about efforts to re-engage a student who is attending irregularly.
Student Family Occupation and Education Data
Student Family Occupation (SFO) and Student Family Education (SFE) data is reported during the Mid-Year (August) Census and used for calculating elements of the SRP for the following year. SFO and SFE data submitted in the Mid-year (August) Census is not used to update SRP funding for that year.
Schools should ensure that SFO and SFE details have been collected from families through the student enrolment form for new and existing students and captured on CASES21 and that proper processes are in place to ensure this information is up-to-date.
Schools should review student records with missing SFO or SFE details and seek information from those families. To assist in this process, schools are advised to run the CASES21 report entitled ‘Primary Family Education and Occupation’ (DF21005).
Schools should keep a paper trail clarifying any variation to SFO and SFE details provided by families.
Nationally consistent student background information
Schools need to ensure that the student background information collected for each student is as complete and accurate as possible.
School enrolment data collected by all Victorian schools helps to inform all levels of government, including the Commonwealth about important issues such as participation in education by Indigenous students. The accuracy of the data is vital for the government to gain the true picture of Indigenous students' participation in school education, and for resource allocation purposes.
Information on indigenous background, family occupation, parental school and non-school education is collected from government schools in the August student enrolment census, Schools must ensure information is kept up-to-date and is as accurate as possible prior to submitting the Student Enrolment Census held in August.
Reviewed 21 March 2022