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CBEDS Frequently Asked Questions 2014

Answers to frequently asked questions about the California Basic Educational Data System (CBEDS) data collection, including the School Information Form (SIF), County-District Information Form (CDIF), and the CBEDS Online Reporting Application (ORA).

Select a specific section to view, or browse through the questions below.

General | CDIF | SIF | CBEDS-ORA

General CBEDS Questions

How are the CDIF and SIF data reported?

Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) use the CBEDS-ORA, a Web-based application, to submit County/District Information Form (CDIF) and School Information Form (SIF) data.

How do I access CBEDS-ORA?

The CBEDS Online Reporting Application [http://www3.cde.ca.gov/opuscbeds/login.aspx] is available via the CDE CBEDS [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/index.asp] Web page (under the CBEDS-ORA heading). A CDE issued user name and password are needed to log into the application.

How do I obtain a user name and password to log on to CBEDS-ORA?

User names and passwords for CBEDS-ORA are sent to CBEDS coordinators, district superintendents, and charter administrators in mid-July. If you did not receive your logon information, please email the CALPADS/ CBEDS/CDS Operations Office at CBEDS@cde.ca.gov or call 916-324-6738. Only authorized personnel will be given logon information.

I am a new CBEDS coordinator. Where can I get training on CBEDS?

CBEDS training is available via the CDE CBEDS [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/index.asp] Web page under the “Training” heading. The training includes a general overview of CBEDS and instructions on submitting SIF and CDIF data to the CDE. The training is provided in Microsoft PowerPoint format with voice-over narration, and it lasts approximately forty minutes.

How do I obtain a copy of the 2014 CBEDS Administrative Manual?

The CBEDS Administrative Manual is available on the CDE CBEDS [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/index.asp] Web page.

What changes were made to this year's CBEDS data collection?

Details on the changes to the CBEDS data collection were sent via e-mail to all CBEDS coordinators, district superintendents, and charter administrators in early June. A copy of this e-mail is available on the CDE CBEDS  [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/index.asp] Web page under the Correspondence heading.

Has the CBEDS-ORA file layout changed from last year?

Yes, the CBEDS-ORA file layout was modified to remove sections from the SIF and CDIF. For a summary of changes, refer to the Document history section of the 2014 CBEDS-ORA File Layout [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/documents/oralayout14.doc] (DOC).

How do charter schools report CBEDS data?

Charter schools may choose to report their CBEDS (and CALPADS) data to the California Department of Education (CDE) via one of the options listed below. (The charter school’s funding type does not affect the charter school’s reporting choice.)

  1. The charter school reports CBEDS data independent of its authorizing agency and directly to the CDE.
    The independently reporting charter school completes the SIF, and not a CDIF. Estimated teacher hires data are reported on the SIF.
  2. The charter school’s authorizing agency reports the charter school’s data to the CDE.
    The authorizing agency reports all applicable information about their charter schools on the CDIF, and submits an SIF for the charter school.

Charter schools that were open in 2013–14, but are closed for the 2014–15 school year, are to report prior year’s data on CBEDS. It will be the responsibility of the authorizing district to report prior year’s data for their charter schools (including the independently reporting charter schools).

How do I report CBEDS data for a school that does not have a county-district-school (CDS) code?

CBEDS data are to be reported for all public schools maintained by county offices of education and school districts that are, or will be, open and providing instruction to students on or before Information Day, October 1, 2014. CBEDS data are not to be reported for preschools, adult education centers, regional occupation centers/programs, private schools, children's centers, or after-school programs.

Obtaining a CDS Code:
If you have a school that meets the reporting requirements for CBEDS and does not have a county-district-school (CDS) code, you will need to request a CDS code by completing an Application for a County-District-School (CDS) Code (CDS-01 form) [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/si/ds/documents/cdsappnew.doc] (DOC) and submitting the application along with board minutes showing approval of the formation and establishment of the school, and another document verifying the operation of the school (for example, budget items or the appointment of the principal). Please review the CDE’s Definition of a School [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/si/ds/dos.asp] to ensure that proposed new schools meet the requirements for obtaining a CDS code. Once a CDS code is assigned to your school, you may report CBEDS data for the school through the CBEDS-ORA.

How do I report CBEDS data for a school that is not on the List of Expected Schools?

Only the types of schools for which the CDE expects to receive CBEDS data are included on the List of Expected Schools. If you have a school that you feel should be on the List of Expected Schools, please contact CDE CBEDS staff.

How do I notify the CDE of a school that is temporarily closed and does not have CBEDS data to report?

To notify the CDE of a temporarily closed school or a school that does not have students enrolled as of Information Day, use the List of Expected Schools, which is available from the Main Menu within CBEDS-ORA. Print out the List of Expected Schools, indicate the school that is temporarily closed, and provide an effective date. Have your district superintendent sign the list and fax the signed copy to the CBEDS/CDS Support Office at 916-327-0195. CDE staff will remove the school from your list, which will allow you to submit your CBEDS data.

How do I make corrections to the List of Expected Schools, like grade span changes or school type changes?

All changes to the List of Expected Schools, except to notify the CDE of a temporarily closed school, must be submitted by your LEA’s CDS coordinator. The CDS coordinator’s contact information for your LEA is included on the CBEDS List of Expected Schools which is available within the CBEDS-ORA [http://www3.cde.ca.gov/opuscbeds/login.aspx].

After I submit my district's CBEDS-ORA data electronically, should I submit the back-up paper copies also?

No. Please do not submit the back-up copies for the CDIF or SIF.

If I find an error in the CBEDS-ORA data after I’ve submitted the information, how do I correct the data?

First, note that any modifications to already-submitted data must be done prior to the final due date or within the amendment window. To modify your CBEDS data: Log in to the CBEDS-ORA, decertify your data, make the modification(s), and resubmit your data.

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County/District Information Form (CDIF)

Do independently reporting charter schools complete a CDIF?

No. The County/District Information Form (CDIF) is only completed by districts and county offices of education. Independently reporting charter schools only report data on the School Information Form (SIF).

Classified Staff (Section A – CDIF)

Are the classified staff reported on the CDIF a sum of the classified staff employed in our district’s schools?

No. Only report the full-time equivalent (FTE) of employees assigned to the county or district office. Do not use this section to report the total number of classified staff reported at each of your school sites. Exclude regional occupational center/programs (ROC/Ps), preschool, child care, or adult education classified employees.

Estimated Number of Teacher Hires (Section B – CDIF)

Should the district report Estimated Teacher Hire data for our district’s independently reporting charter schools (IRCs)?

No. Do not report estimated hires for the independently reporting charter schools (IRCs) in your district. IRCs will report their Estimated Teacher Hires data on the School Information Form (SIF).

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School Information Form (SIF)

Where do I obtain blank SIFs to distribute to the schools in my district?

Blank School Information Forms (SIFs) (as well as the County/District Information Form [CDIF]) are available from the CDE CBEDS [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/index.asp] Web page and may be printed from the Reports Menu within CBEDS-ORA.

Why are there sections missing from the SIF?

In an effort to reduce the data burden on local educational agencies, obsolete data elements were eliminated from the October 2014 CBEDS data collection. The elements that were removed include the classified staff “counts”, high school graduation requirements, technology, and number of bilingual paraprofessionals. Since some sections of the SIF were removed and the remaining sections will not be “re-lettered” until the 2015–16 data collection, there will be sections missing from the SIF and it will not follow a logical alphabetical order.

Classified Staff (Section A – SIF)

Where do I report a classified staff member who chooses not to report a race or ethnic designation?

Report the staff member in the "Two or More Races, Not Hispanic" column.

When should I use the "Two or More Races, not Hispanic" column?

The racial designation entitled "Two or More Races, not Hispanic" is aligned with the federal standards for collecting and reporting multiple races. This is not a designation that should be used for the local collection of race data from individuals, but should be used to report aggregate data of more than one race. You may also include staff in this category if they did not report a race or ethnicity.

Please note: You are not to include staff in this category if they reported their ethnicity as Hispanic or Latino and also reported two or more races. These staff should be reported in the “Hispanic or Latino or Any Race” category.

Are the classified staff who work in after school programs reported in CBEDS?

Yes. Report all classified staff regardless of their assignment. However, do not report the classified staff employed in a regional occupational center/program (ROC/P), preschool, child care, or adult education center.

How should I report full time classified staff who work half-time as paraprofessionals and half-time as office/clerical at one school?

Report the full time equivalent (FTE) for each assignment (e.g., “.50 FTE paraprofessional” and “.50 office/clerical”).

How should I report the classified staff who serve at more than one school in our district?

Report the FTE at each school site to which he/she is assigned. In other words, if a half-time employee works at two school sites, the employee's FTE is reported as .25 at each site.

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Educational Options/Independent Study/Online Education (Section B – SIF)

If a student participates in a magnet program and an alternative program of choice, is he/she reported in each educational option?

Yes. Report the student in each educational option in which he/she participates, but only once in the unduplicated total.

Are students who attend community day, continuation, and/or opportunity schools reported in independent study?

Community Day Schools cannot use independent study as a means of providing any part of the minimum instructional day. Therefore, community day students are not reported in the independent study section.

For continuation school and opportunity school students, no more than 10% of the students participating in a continuation high school and/or opportunity schools or programs may be eligible for apportionment credit for independent study. (A student who is pregnant or who is the primary caregiver for one or more of his or her children is not counted within the 10 percent cap.)

Should the student who is placed on independent study due to illness (not covered by home and hospital instruction) or vacation be reported in independent study?

Report the student if he/she has a signed Independent Study Written Agreement for five consecutive days or more (not applicable to charter schools), and plans to return to the classroom after the short term independent study. Additional questions regarding Independent Study or Types of Educational Options may be directed to the CDE’s Educational Options Office at 916-319-0943.

Are the students who are reported in online education also reported in independent study?

Students taking asynchronous online classes (not under the immediate supervision of a certificated employee of the LEA, students and teachers are online at different times) should be reported in both sections. Students taking synchronous online classes (under the immediate supervision of a certificated employee of the LEA) should only be reported under online education, and not independent study.

Why did I receive an error when I reported all my students as “taking 50% or more of their classes through independent study”?

Students reported as “taking 50% or more of their classes through independent study” (line 5), must also be reported as students “taking one or more classes through independent study” (line 4). If you did not report students “taking one or more classes through independent study” you will receive an error. Line 5 is a subset of line 4, and therefore must be less than or equal to line 4.

In reporting the number of graduates through independent study, do I include students that completed an independent study class in any of grades 9-12, or just 12th grade?

Count students if they completed one or more high school classes through independent study during any of grades 9–12.

Should I include students who successfully completed a high school equivalency exam (i.e. General Education Development or California High School Proficiency Exam) in the graduates through Independent Study line?

No. Only report the number of students who took one or more high school classes through independent study and graduated from high school.

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Educational Calendar (Section D – SIF)

What type of calendar do I report if the district does not have year-round schools?

Only check "traditional" in part 1.

My school operates on both a traditional and single-track calendar. How do I report our school calendar?

In part 1, check "traditional" and "single-track." In part 2, check the appropriate single-track, year-round calendar.

How do I report a school's start date and end date for a multi-track calendar?

In part 3, report the first day of school for the earliest track and the last day of school for the latest track.

Parental Exception Waiver (Section E – SIF)

What is the difference between a parental exception waiver and a parental request?

A Parental exception waiver is a petition submitted by a parent or guardian to have their child enrolled in a bilingual education class or other generally recognized alternative course of study.


A Parental request, on the other hand, is a request by a parent or guardian to have their child transferred from a structured English immersion setting, placed in an English-language mainstream class, and provided with additional and appropriate instructional services as authorized by the California Code of Regulations, Title 5, Section 11301(b).

School Improvement Grants (Sections I, J, K, and L – SIF)

Do I need to report School Improvement Grant (SIG) data?

To determine whether your sites are SIG participants and are required to submit data for SIG, review the CBEDS List of Expected Schools available within CBEDS-ORA[http://www3.cde.ca.gov/opuscbeds/login.aspx]. SIG reporting instructions are on pages 11–13 of the CBEDS Administrative Manual.

Truancy (Section M – SIF)

How do I determine whether a student should be reported as truant?

A student is considered truant when the student has unexcused absences of more than 30 minutes on three or more days during the prior school year (July 1–June 30).

If a student was considered truant more than once at the same school, do I report the student more than once?

No, the truancy count is an unduplicated count on the school level. Students should only be reported once.

How do I report a student who is truant at two different schools in the same LEA?

If a student is considered truant at two different schools, each school should report the student once.

If a school did not receive Title IV, Part A funds (Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act), are they still required to report the number of truancies?

Yes, every school is required to report the number of students who were truant.

If a school did not have any truant students, how do they report this?

For most schools, it is highly unlikely that zero students have had three or more unexcused absences. However, if you have no truancies to report, enter “0” for the number of truants and provide an explanation. Note: A minimum of 35 characters is required for your "0" response. Examples of appropriate repsonses include:

For more information on reporting truancy data, please refer to page 11 of the CBEDS Administrative Manual.

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The CBEDS Online Reporting Application

What is CBEDS-ORA?

CBEDS-ORA is a Web application used by authorized CBEDS LEA coordinators to report appropriate CDIF and SIF data to the California Department of Education (CDE). It also allows users to update coordinator contact information, and it contains a list of schools that are expected to submit CBEDS data.

Why do we need CALPADS and CBEDS-ORA? What is the difference between the two?

Each system (the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System [CALPADS] and the California Basic Educational Data System [CBEDS-ORA]) is used to report different types of data. CALPADS is a statewide longitudinal education data system used by LEAs to report student-level and staff-level data. CALPADS houses student-level enrollment, demographic, program, and assessment data for evaluation and research use, as well as course enrollment, course completion, and staff assignments.

CBEDS-ORA is the system used by LEAs to report aggregate data. Data reported through CBEDS-ORA include non-student data, such as aggregate counts of classified staff, estimated number of teacher hires, and school educational calendar type. Select aggregate student counts are also collected on CBEDS-ORA, such as aggregate counts of students in the School Improvement Grant (SIG) and Truancy sections, as well as some educational options programs.

How do authorized LEA representatives use CBEDS-ORA to submit CBEDS data? Are there instructions or training for using CBEDS-ORA?

LEA representatives (CBEDS coordinators) use a Web browser to navigate to the CBEDS-ORA  [http://www3.cde.ca.gov/opuscbeds/login.aspx] logon page. Users then log on using their unique user name and password, which are issued by the California Department of Education (CDE). After all data have been entered into CBEDS-ORA, coordinators must submit/certify the data.

For instructions on how to use CBEDS-ORA, please refer to the CBEDS-ORA Quick Guide[http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/oraquickguide.asp]. CBEDS training is also available via the CDE CBEDS [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/] Web page.

Can LEAs upload a data file into CBEDS-ORA to meet the data reporting requirements?

The CDE provides a file upload option for LEAs. However, once the file is uploaded, youm ust still go through the process of submitting/certifying your data. Files must be in the specified format for CBEDS-ORA in order for data to be uploaded. You may view the 2014 CBEDS-ORA File Layout [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/documents/oralayout14.doc] (DOC) from the CBEDS Online Reporting Application and Resources [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/cbedsora.asp] Web page or within CBEDS-ORA [http://www3.cde.ca.gov/opuscbeds/login.aspx].

How may I receive more information about CBEDS-ORA?

Additional resources on CBEDS-ORA are available on the CDE CBEDS Online Reporting Application and Resources [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/cbedsora.asp] Web page.


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Questions:   CALPADS/CBEDS/CDS Operations Office | cbeds@cde.ca.gov | 916-324-6738
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