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CBEDS Frequently Asked Questions 2015

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).

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General | CDIF | SIF | CBEDS-ORA

General CBEDS Questions

How are the CDIF and SIF data submitted?

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 LEAs 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 CBEDS/CDS Support 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 2015 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 late March 2015. 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 2015 CBEDS-ORA File Layout [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/documents/oralayout15.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 2014–15, but are closed for the 2015–16 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 those that were independently reporting in 2014–15).

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 7, 2015. 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 work with your LEA's CDS Coordinator 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. Contact your LEA's CALPADS Administrator to confirm that no student enrollments were reported on the CALPADS ODS Report 1.1 on Information Day. Print out the List of Expected Schools, and indicate the school that is temporarily closed by providing an effective date and a brief reason for the temporary closure. 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 by attempting to edit the 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 on the CDIF. Do not use the CDIF to report the total number of classified staff reported at each of your school sites.

Note: Regional occupational centers/programs (ROC/Ps), preschool, child care, or adult education classified employees are not to be included in your CBEDS counts.

The groundskeeper for our district are employees of another district.  Our district reimburses the other district for the groundskeeper's services.  Which district should report these classified staff members?

The district where the employees are physically working should report the staff, so your district should report the groundskeeper as “Other Classified Staff.”

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.

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.

How do I calculate the FTE of a classified employee who works 5.75 hours out of an 8 hour day?

Take the number of hours the employee works each day (5.75) and divide it by the number of full time hours (8). The result is .71875. Since you are to report to two decimal places, the FTE would be .72.

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.

Should long-term substitute classified staff be reported?

Yes, long-term substitutes should be included in your CBEDS report.

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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Kindergarten Program Type (Section B – SIF)

I’m getting a warning indicating that the transitional kindergarten (TK) program data do not match the K program data for a school. The school offers a full-day K program and a part-day TK program. May I submit these data, and do I need a waiver to operate different length K and TK programs?

Yes, you may submit data reflecting different lengths of K and TK programs. Pursuant to Education Code Section 37202 External link opens in new window or tab., TK programs operated by a district must be of equal length to any K program operated by the same school site and/or district, unless there is an approved State Board of Education waiver on file. For more information on applying for a waiver, please refer to the California Department of Education’s (CDE’s) Submit a Waiver Request [http://www.cde.ca.gov/re/lr/wr/submit.asp] Web page.

I’m getting a warning indicating that I’ve reported K program data for a non-elementary school. The school does offer a K program, so why am I getting this warning and what can I do to submit my data?

This warning triggers for schools that are not classified as traditional elementary or K–12 school. For example, if your school is a special education school serving students in grades K–8, although you serve elementary students, your school is classified as a special education school, so it will trigger this warning. This is true for any other county or district operated schools that do not fall into the traditional elementary or K–12 category. Since your school offers K and/or TK programs, accurately reflect the type of program(s) it offers submit the data. This is just a warning, so data submission will not be prevented.

I’m getting a warning indicating that the school reported K enrollment last year, but does not offer a TK program? The school offers a K program, but not a TK program. Why am I getting this warning and what can I do to submit my data?

Since this is the first year collecting TK data through CBEDS, we do not have existing data to compare to, so we have chosen to use K enrollment data as a guide when determining who might offer TK programs. Since your school does not offer a TK program, disregard this warning and submit the data reflecting that the school does not offer a TK program.

How do I report kindergarten program data for independent study, home school, or other types of schools that don’t meet on a daily basis?

Since independent study, and other similar courses, are equivalent to classroom-based courses, when determining full-day or part-day kindergarten programs you are to consider the instructional minutes that are equivalent to a classroom-based course, rather than the one or so hours per week that you physically meet with the student.

Since my high school district does not have any kindergarten programs, do I need to complete this section?

Yes, all schools must complete this section. Please select “None” for each school in your district that does not offer a kindergarten or transitional kindergarten program.

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Truancy (Section C – 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 reporting window (July 1–June 30).

If a student is tardy for more than 30 minutes for three classes on the same day, do I count the student as a truant?

Since unexcused absences are reported by the day, this scenario would only account for one day of an unexcused absence. In order for a student to be counted as a truant, they would need three or more days of unexcused absences of more than 30 minutes. If this was the only day within the reporting window that the student had an unexcused absence of more than 30 minutes, they would not be counted as a truant.

If a student was considered truant for both the fall and spring semesters, do I report the student more than once?

No, the truancy count is an unduplicated count at the school level. Students should only be reported once per school during the reporting window.

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 truancies.

What is the difference between a “truant” and a “chronic absentee”?

A truant is student between the ages of 6 and 18 who has accumulated three unexcused absences of more than 30 minutes on three days in one school year as defined in California Education Code Section 48260. A “chronic absentee” is a student who is absent on 10 percent or more of the schooldays in the school year when the number of days a pupil is absent is divided by the number of days the pupil is enrolled and school was actually taught, exclusive of Saturdays or Sundays pursuant to Education Code Section 60901. A chronic absentee may have all his or her absences excused, and a chronic absentee is absent for the full school day on 10 percent of the days enrolled. A student is only identified as a truant once during the school year, but a chronic absentee can be identified several times as the percentage of days missed fluctuates above and below 10 percent.

How are truancies identified for Independent Study students?

If the student is not completing the work required by the learning agreement, the student should be evaluated for referral to classroom instruction. Once the student is back in classroom instruction, the student should be considered a truant if the student misses more than 30 minutes without a valid excuse on three days.

How are truancies identified for Virtual schools?

It is recommended that Virtual schools use the same method they use for calculating attendance and average daily attendance (ADA) funding to identify truancies. For example, if completed work is used to calculate daily attendance, then failure to submit completed work may be used to identify a day/s of absence.

What are the repercussions of not reporting truants, or having an inaccurate attendance accounting system?

Per California Education Code Section 48070.6, the CDE is required to report out on school-level truancy rates. Failure of LEAs to report these data, or intentionally reporting inaccurate data, may result in consequences including loss of funding, inability to apply for competitive grant funding, and negative public perception.

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 responses include:

  • School has an aggressive attendance policy
  • Small enrollment population with no unexcused absences

For more information on reporting truancy data, please refer to page 8–9 of the CBEDS Administrative Manual.

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 G, H, I, and J – 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 10–11 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, you must 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 2015 CBEDS-ORA File Import Specifications [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ds/dc/cb/documents/oralayout15.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].

Can data be exported from CBEDS-ORA?

Yes, data may be exported into a tab-delimited text file. The option to export data is available through the Advanced Features option from the Main Menu.

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
Last Reviewed: Thursday, November 5, 2015

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