SIMS Spring Census 2022 guidance

Posted  12th January 2022
Posted by  Georgina Rowlands

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SIMS Census

As part of our SIMS support for schools, here’s our update on the latest guidance for the SIMS Spring Term 2022 School Census.

    • Census date 20/01/2022
    • Attendance collected from the start of the Autumn Term
    • Exclusions collected from 05/04/2021 to 31/12/2021
    • Free School Meal Eligibility collected from 08/10/2021 to 20/01/2022
    • Alternative Provision Placements collected from 01/08/2020 to 20/01/2022
    • Funding and Monitoring collected from 01/08/2021 to 20/01/2022
    • Learner Support collected from 01/08/2021 to 20/01/2022

Changes to the School Census Spring Return include the following:

Relationships Education, RSE and Health Education

Applicable to Primary and All-Through schools only

To enable schools to report on Relationships Education, RSE and Health Education as a class activity, this option has been added to the Activity drop-down list in the Classes panel. Where applicable, this change is also reflected in the Class detail report.

Alternative Provision Detail Report

The new Alternative Provision detail report displays information about the school arranged alternative provision placements that fall within the data collection period (01/08/2021 to 20/01/2022). This report enables schools to check that the data is accurate before supplying the census file to the DfE.

Exclusions Detail Report

Not applicable to Nursery schools

For the Spring 2022 census, the Exclusions report includes both fixed term exclusions and suspensions.

  • The report criteria has been updated to reflect this information:
  • Pupil/students with exclusions from 05/04/2021 to 31/12/2021
  • On-roll pupil/students and leavers
  • Fixed term exclusion/suspensions (excluding lunchtime suspensions) starting from 05/04/2021 to 31/12/2021
  • Permanent exclusions from 05/04/2021 to 31/12/2021
NOTE: Suspension is the new name for a Fixed Term Exclusion

Do you have 4 Year olds taught in E1, E2, N1 or N2?

If so you need to apply Consolidated Database Patch D [4] (Patch 26911)

This consolidated database patch is required for all state schools in England that are legally required to provide a School Census returns to the DfE that includes data for 4 year old's taught in year E1, E2, N1 or N2.

The date of birth range for identifying children as subject to DfE funding for 4 year old's taught in year E1, E2, N1 or N2 has been reduced from 01/09/2016 - 31/08/2017 to 01/01/2017 - 31/08/2017.

This patch is available via SOLUS 3 for schools that carry out their own upgrade. For SBS schools that we upgrade don’t worry we’ve got this covered for you.

It is essential that schools subject to this very late DfE change to the specification for School Census Spring 2022 apply Consolidated Database Patch D [4] or above before uploading their XML return file to DfE COLLECT.

Fileset 2003 is now available

The latest Fileset (2003) is now available, so hit the download button and unzip the folder. Then open SIMS and go to Tools | Setups | Import and click the yellow folder button to browse to the fileset, simply highlight it and choose 'Open' then use the 'Import Fileset' button.

Please note: As normal there will be updated filesets periodically, so check back here for the latest one!

Remember, you'll need to close and open SIMS again for it to take effect. 

Download the latest fileset

Download the 'Producing the Spring Census' guides from Capita


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Pupil Referral Unit

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If you require any assistance or SIMS support please call us on 0345 222 1551 | Opt 3. or email

Would you like us to do your Spring Census for you?

Let us take it off your to-do list this month by contacting us. Looking ahead, we can do ALL of this year's returns for you - whether you are already an SBS customer or not!

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