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Independent Study Ratio Calculations

Instructions, examples, and worksheets for calculating independent study ratios.

LEA-wide ratios

Recent legislation, Chapter 13, Statutes of 2015 (Assembly Bill 104), enacted June 24, 2015, changed the independent study ratios calculations back to a local educational agency (LEA)-wide calculation, rather than a calculation by grade span.

In 2014-15, the independent study ratios were required to be calculated by grade span. However, due to the late timing of the 2014 legislation and late availability of the requisite instructions for making the calculations, LEAs had the option to calculate ratios by grade span or on an overall LEA-wide basis. Beginning fiscal year 2015–16, LEAs will be required to calculate the ratio only on an LEA-wide basis. Please refer to Education Code Section 51745.6 for the current language.

County Offices of Education (COEs) prior year comparative ratio

Assembly Bill 104 also changed the comparative ratio for COEs.  COEs now compare their current year independent ratio to the prior year ratio (was previously a current year ratio) of the high school or unified school district with the largest average daily attendance of pupils in that county.

Course-Based Independent Study (CBIS)

Beginning in 2015-16, the new course-based independent study program is available. CBIS is a separate independent study program with requirements that differ from the traditional independent study program. CBIS average daily attendance is tracked and reported separately, and must have its own independent study ratio calculation.  Please refer to Education Code sections 51749.5 – 51749.6 for information on CBIS.

Below are the links to the independent study ratio instructions and calculation spreadsheets:


Instructions for calculating traditional independent study (IS) LEA-wide ratios
Calculation Example Spreadsheet for Traditional IS (XLS)
Calculation Spreadsheet for Traditional IS (XLS)

Instructions for calculating course-based independent study (CBIS) LEA-wide ratios (E-mail Wendi McCaskill at for assistance.)


Instructions for Calculating LEA-wide ratios.
Instructions for Calculating Grade Span Ratios
Calculation Example Spreadsheet (XLS)
Calculation Spreadsheet (XLS)

Questions: Wendi McCaskill | | 916-323-1333 
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, April 20, 2016
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