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Introducing Cohorts: Compulsory School Age Reporting and More

We’ve been busy behind the scenes building a new, more powerful reporting engine that enables Studybugs to report on cohorts that change over time, such as compulsory school age. We’re calling this capability Cohorts.

This work has been a huge undertaking, delaying our usual flow of new features, but now it’s in place we will be able to release new features more quickly while providing more flexible and powerful reporting options.

Below, I’m going to run through some new and upcoming features made possible by the Cohorts update.

View the Attendance of Compulsory School Age Pupils

The first new feature – for LAs and academy trusts – is that we’ve introduced compulsory school age reporting into three existing commands, plus one new one:

You’ll need to be signed with your LA or trust user account for these links to work.

For the first three of these, the commands now report on compulsory school age pupils by default, but with the option to open it up to “All Pupils” if you wish.

We’ll be CSA-enabling further commands over the coming weeks, for schools as well as LAs and trusts.

Definition of Compulsory School Age

We follow the legal definition of compulsory school age, taking into account how the cohort changes over the course of each year. Note that some other systems approximate CSA by looking at (say) years 1-11, which is easier to calculate, but not strictly correct, so you might see some differences with the numbers in Studybugs. More on this here.

Create Reports for Custom Cohorts (Coming Soon)

The new capabilities will give you greater control over the groups you report on, helping you get the data you need for specific cohorts you define. We’re currently working on enabling you to:

  • construct your own cohorts, either by listing the members individually, or by combining other cohorts, and extract reports on these, and
  • form cohorts across different types of members (eg children, pupils, schools), and
  • extract reports for previous years, accounting for the changes in cohorts over time.

For example, you could have a cohort of Children in Need (CIN) children, another cohort of EHCP pupils, and create a cohort of schools – let’s say, “LA-maintained schools”. Then you could extract a graph of attendance over time for CIN EHCP pupils attending LA-maintained schools.

New Cohorts Are Maintained in Real Time

Behind the scenes, when we encounter a cohort we haven’t seen before, we construct a table of data which we then maintain in real time. So, the first time you request a report for a new cohort, it might take up to a few minutes to generate, but the next time you ask for it, it’ll be near-instant. Here’s how it looks.

We’re Open to Feedback

We welcome on new features, which helps us make sure that they meet your needs. We hope you find the updated commands useful and we look forward to adding more in the near future.

— Jeremy Mabbitt

Posted 20 December 2023 Share