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Profile Definitions

Last updated July 30, 2014

    The data in the Profiles are collected by several different units of the California Department of Education (CDE) at different times of the school year. The sources of the data are described briefly at the beginning of these definitions, followed by an explanation of each piece of information with its source in parentheses.
    The Profiles have a link to web pages that maintain lists of school, district or county web sites.
    In addition to the profile definitions found on this page, a glossary of terms is available for further reference.
    Data Sources
    AFDC (AFDC Report): The number of children whose families received Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) was reported until the program was changed in 1997 and renamed CalWORKs.
    CalWORKs (CalWORKs report): California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids. This program replaced ADFC in 1997 as part of California's response to federal welfare reform.
    CBEDS: The California Basic Educational Data System (CBEDS) is a statewide data collection system for kindergarten through 12th grade. The data are collected annually, in early October on a day designated by the California Department of Education (CDE) as "Information Day," and are usually certified and released in late spring or early summer. If a school or district did not complete part of CBEDS, that data will be missing. Sections of the report with missing data may be represented by a zero or "No," as appropriate.
    CDS File: The County-District-School (CDS) file provides a unique identifying number for all counties, districts, and schools in California. The file, maintained by the Educational Demographics Office in the California Department of Education, contains basic identification and location data about public schools and school districts. The CDS file is updated continuously as schools open and close; the CDS data on the profile will be updated annually.
    Public Schools File: This file, maintained by the California Department of Education's Demographics Office, combines CDS file data with other miscellaneous data, such as charter status, population status (from the Census Bureau) and year-round calendar when appropriate.
    Language Census: The California Education Code requires an annual count of the number of students with limited proficiency in English by primary language and grade level. This Census (also known as the R30-LC) must be completed by March 1 each year and submitted to the California Department of Education by April 1. Data from the Language Census are usually certified and released in late summer.
    SAT File: Formerly termed Scholastic Achievement Test, the SAT file is created from records of individual student test results on the SAT I Reasoning Test (SAT). These records are obtained from the Educational Testing Service by the California Department of Education each fall. The file contains the average verbal and mathematics scores, the total score, and the percentage of seniors who took the SAT for each school, district, and county. Beginning in 1995-96 SAT data was reported on a new scale, and data in years prior to 1995-96 was converted to this new scale to enable comparisons.
    Title I Application File: This data indicates if the school has Title I and also if it is a Schoolwide Program (SWP). Title I is a federal program that provides supplementary services to improve the educational performance of low-achieving children from low-income families. The Title I file is updated continuously; the profile will be updated annually.
    Compensatory Education File: The number of compensatory education students is collected on the Consolidated Application. The data is maintained by the California Department of Education's School and District Accountability Division.
    General Information
    CDS code (CDS File): A 14-digit code (for schools) or 7-digit code (for districts) that is the official, unique identification of each one in California. The first two digits identify the county, the next five digits identify the school district, and the last seven digits (as applicable) identify the school.

    School Description
    : General descriptive information about the school from various data sources.
    Type of school (CDS File): The type of school from the school's "ownership code" in the CDS file. The possible identification terms are: Elementary school (usually K-5 or K-6), Middle school (usually 6-8), Junior High school (usually 7-9), High school (usually 9-12), K-12 school, Preschool, Continuation school, Special Education school, Juvenile Court school, County community school, Alternative school, Opportunity school, Community Day school, and Nonpublic, Nonsectarian school.
    Grade levels (CBEDS): The span from the lowest to the highest grade level for which the school reported an enrollment of one or more students.
    Year round calendar (CBEDS): A"Yes" or a "No" to indicate if the school is in session year round. Year-round calendars usually have multiple tracks, although a whole school can be single-track year-round.
    Charter school (CDS File): A "Yes" or "No" to indicate whether or not the school has been approved as a charter school. Each charter school prepares its own "charter," an agreement between the school and the school district or chartering agency. The school is then exempted from most state laws governing schools and districts. As of July 2001, about 350 charter schools were operating in California. Some of them have been converted from existing public schools, while others are newly created.
    Total enrollment (CBEDS): The number of kindergarten through 12th grade students enrolled in the school on "Information Day," a day in early October of the designated school year. Enrollment is often larger than the Average Daily Attendance.
    Population Status (Public Schools File): Each school's location is classified in one of eight U.S. Census Bureau categories of population density. It may take 1-2 years before a new school is classified.  (Note: Beginning with 2013-14, CDE no longer includes Population Status information in its Public Schools Database, so the information will no longer be available in Ed-Data reports after 2012-13.)​

    District Types
    : The majority of districts fall within three types:
    An elementary school district usually includes kindergarten and grades one through six or eight.
    A high school district usually includes grade nine and above but may include grade seven and above.
    A unified school district includes both elementary and high school students.

    The name of a district can also indicate the population served:
    The word union in the name of an elementary school district indicates it was formed from two or more districts.
    The word joint in a district's name indicates it includes territory from more than one county.

    Academic Performance Index
    (Academic Performance Index): Most schools have an API, a state ranking (by elementary, middle, or high school), a ranking in comparison to 100 similar schools, and growth/API targets for the following year plus whether or not they participate in the Underperforming Schools Grant program and qualify for monetary awards. (Further details on the API are on the school's API report.)

    Average Class Size and Pupil-Teacher Ratios
    (CBEDS): Ed-Data uses the "filtered" version of average class size, calculated by dividing enrollment by the number of classes with 1-50 students, excluding special education and a few other minor categories. The grade level (K-6) and subject area (English, mathematics, social science and science) average class sizes are also enrollment divided by the number of classes with 1-50 students, but these do include special education and other minor categories.
    A pupil-teacher ratio is different from average class size because it is the number of pupils per full-time equivalent teacher. The ratio is usually smaller than the average class size because some teachers are not in regular classrooms full-time.

    (CBEDS): A description of student access to technology.
    Number of computers: The total number of computers owned or leased by the school that are used at least part of the time for instruction or activities directly related to instruction. Examples are direct instruction, curriculum development, classroom management, preparation of instructional materials, and similar activities.
    Number of students per computer: The enrollment divided by the number of computers, as defined above. Some very small schools or alternative schools may have nearly as many computers as students.
    Number of classrooms on the Internet: The number of classrooms or other instructional settings (such as computer lab, library, or career center) at the school that have access to the Internet through at least one computer. Each classroom or instructional setting is counted only once, even if it has more than one computer with Internet access.
    Enrollment by Race/Ethnicity: Student race and ethnicity data are aggregated into the following categories and reported in aggregate counts as well as the percent of enrollment in each group. Beginning in 2009-10, student race and ethnicity data were collected via CALPADS. The manner in which race and ethnicity data were collected also changed in 2009-10 to be consistent with federal reporting requirements; these changes included collecting data about Hispanic/Latino ethnicity in one question and collecting data about race in a second question.

    Many districts and schools keep a more comprehensive list of race/ethnicity groups or subcategories. The groups listed here meet state and federal reporting requirements.
    American Indian or Alaska Native: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America) and who maintains cultural identification through tribal affiliation or community recognition.
    Asian: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent. This area includes, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Thailand, and Vietnam.
    Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: A person with origins in Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands (except the Philippine Islands).
    Filipino: A person with origins in the Philippine Islands.
    Hispanic or Latino: A person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central or South American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.
    Black or African American: A person having origins in any of the Black racial groups of Africa.
    White: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, North Africa, or the Middle East (e.g., England, Portugal, Egypt, and Iran).
    Two or More Races (new 2009-10): A reporting designation for persons who are not Hispanic and identify themselves by more than one race.
    None reported* (new 2009-10): Students who have intentionally not reported a race or ethnicity.
    Multiple/No Response (discontinued in 2009-10): A designation that began in 1998-99 to report aggregated data from districts and schools that allowed persons to identify more than one race or ethnicity or not make any identification.
    * Recently, the U.S. Department of Education revised its guidelines on federal race/ethnicity reporting. The guidelines were changed to align to the 1997 OMB Directive 15 for race/ethnicity collection and reporting. The federal guidelines do not allow LEAs to provide students and staff with a No Response or Decline to State category and require third party identification for those individuals who refuse to self-identify. In California, although LEAs do not include No Response or Decline to State when asking an individual for race/ethnicity, we do not insist that LEAs conduct third-party identification. As a result, for purposes of state reporting, the race/ethnicity for those individuals who have not self-identified are reflected in the None Reported category. In some federal reports, students who do not respond may be reported as Two or More Races or they may just be excluded from the counts in a report.

    Special Programs
    : Four student counts from several data sources, plus the percent of enrollment.
    English Learner (Language Census): Students who are not yet proficient in English. In previous years these students were referred to as Limited English Proficient (LEP).
    Free /reduced price meals (CalWORKs Report): Students enrolled in the program for free or reduced price meals. County social service offices for the whole attendance area report the students. Since some may attend private schools or have dropped out of school, the CalWORKs count may be slightly inflated.
    CalWORKs (CalWORKs Report): The students ages 5-17 whose families receive CalWORKs payments. This program replaced the former Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) after 1997-98. County social service offices for the whole attendance area report the students. Since some students may attend private schools or have dropped out of school, the CalWORKs count may be slightly inflated. As of 2004-05, the CDE no longer collects or reports CalWORKs data; information about Free/Reduced-Price Meals is used as a proxy for a socioeconomically disadvantaged population.
    Compensatory education (Consolidated Application): The students at the school participating in the federal Title I and/or the state Economic Impact Aid/State Compensatory Education (EIA/SCE) program. Title I is a federal program that provides supplementary services to low-achieving students from low-income families, and EIA/SCE is a state program that provides funds to low-achieving schools with high proportions of transient, low-income or English learner students. The goal of both is to improve student achievement in reading and mathematics.
    Note: EIA was eliminated as a state categorical program in 2013 under the state’s new Local Control Funding Formula for financing schools. However funds previously allocated under EIA are still subject to the original requirements. For more information, see this explanation from the CDE.
    Title I school (Title I Application File): The profile will have either a "Yes" or a "No" indicating whether or not the school has Title I. Additionally, schools with Title I may have a Schoolwide Program (SWP). Title I is a federal program that provides supplementary services to low-achieving students from low-income families. Title I schools with more than 50 percent of their students from low-income families are eligible to become SWP schools. Title I SWP schools have the flexibility to serve all students at the school and are relieved of requirements to account for time and expenditures by services provided.

    Alternative Education
    (CBEDS): Enrollment of students in the listed alternative programs, most of which are for high school students. Not all programs are listed separately in the CBEDS data collection in all years. Some educational options may be a program within a school, while others may constitute the entire enrollment of a school. Students may be engaged concurrently in more than one education option.
    Alternative Schools and Programs of Choice: Enrollment in a voluntary school or program established by a local governing board to provide different means of attaining the objectives of regular education and meeting different students’ interests, needs, and ways of learning. Alternative schools and programs of choice may offer a different instructional strategy, philosophy, structure, or focus. Examples include the following schools and programs: dual immersion language, fundamental or Back-to-Basics, Montessori, Open Classroom, and others.
    AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination): Students enrolled in a college preparatory program for economically disadvantaged and underachieving students in middle schools and high schools. It is designed to support disadvantaged secondary students to succeed in rigorous curricula, enter mainstream activities in school, and increase their opportunities to enroll in four-year colleges.
    California Partnership Academies: These programs serve students in grades ten through twelve and are structured as a school within a school. At least 50 percent of the students in the academies have been identified as at risk of dropping out of school. Academies have a career focus and integrate the career focus with rigorous academic courses. Business partnerships provide mentors and internships and teachers work as a team to support student success. Academies are grant-funded.
    Community/experience based: Enrollment in an instructional program based in the community, including community service, internship, city (or community) as school, school without walls, and experience or field-based education. (Does not include community day schools.)
    Continuation classes: Students enrolled in either a comprehensive or continuation high school that meets the requirements for continuation education.
    Independent study: Students who have an individualized instructional plan based on their specific needs. The student enters into an agreement (contract) with the district to complete specific assignments under the supervision of a teacher.
    International Baccalaureate (IB) Program: Students enrolled in an internationally recognized high school diploma program. All IB diploma candidates are required to engage in the study of languages, sciences, mathematics, and humanities in the final two years of high school. Universities may grant college credit or appropriate placement of students who pass the IB examination.
    Magnet program: Students enrolled in any program or school within a school designed to attract students from their school of residence. A magnet school often is established and operates on the basis of a particular curriculum theme and/or a particular instructional mode or structure; it may or may not be intended to help achieve racial balance.
    Online Education: Online education is teacher-led instruction that takes place over the Internet where the teacher and student are separated geographically. Students can receive personalized learning and specific, almost instant feedback in a digital environment.
    Opportunity program: The number of students in a program for student attendance improvement or other school-related problems.
    Pregnant/parenting program: Identified pregnant/parenting female and expectant/parenting male students who receive specialized services (e.g., child care, classes, counseling, case management, etc.) through the school or program in which they are enrolled.
    Smaller Learning Communities: Students part of a community defined as having an identified, cohesive group of fewer than 500 students and as being smaller than a comprehensive high school. These schools are designed to foster a greater sense of school community and belonging among students and staff and to allow for closer and more comprehensive oversight of students’ academic and social progress. Students are supervised and educated by a team of teachers in a focused instructional program for a minimum of 50 percent of the school day and for a minimum of two consecutive school years.
    Specialized Secondary Programs: Students in programs initially funded by grants that provide start-up funds for schools to design and establish a new, advanced specialized program. The programs are expected to be models for standards-based instruction, based on the development of new curriculum and provision of varied instructional methodologies, that emphasizes advanced, in-depth study of a targeted content area. The acquisition of technology skills and their use as a tool for instruction and learning also are emphasized in these programs.
    Thematic Schools and Programs: Enrollment in a school or program organized by a curricular theme or themes, such as the humanities, the arts, international relations, or health careers.
    Other: Students in all alternative programs or educational options not covered in the preceding categories.

    English Learner
    (EL) students (Language Census): The numbers of students who are not proficient in English (formerly Limited English Proficient, LEP). Students are listed for the top five languages in the school and as a percent of school enrollment. "All other" is a count of the remaining EL students at the school who speak other languages.
    Certificated Staff (CBEDS)
    Administrators: The number of administrators, as reported on the CBEDS Report. Administrators are certificated employees who are not teachers or pupil services personnel. Administrators include principals, assistant superintendents or principals, program directors or coordinators, and other certificated staff not providing direct services to students. The number is also given as a full time equivalent (FTE). To the extent one or more of the administrators does not work full time or that other staff perform administrative duties, the FTE number will be smaller or larger than the number of administrators. An administrator is only to be reported at one school, so if he or she works at two or more schools, these numbers on the profile may be slightly distorted.
    Pupil services: The number of pupil services personnel at the school as reported on the CBEDS Report. These are certificated employees who provide direct services to students but are not teachers, for example counselors, nurses, psychologists, social workers, librarians, speech specialists, and other medical personnel. The number is also calculated as a full time equivalent (FTE). To the extent one or more of the pupil services personnel at the school does not work full time or that other staff perform pupil services duties, the FTE number will be smaller or larger than the number of pupil services personnel. Pupil services personnel are only to be reported at one school, so if he or she works at two or more schools, these numbers on the profile may be slightly distorted.
    Teachers: The number of teachers at the school and their full time equivalent (FTE). Adult education, Regional Occupation Programs (ROP), child care, and preschool teachers are not included in this count.

    Teachers by Type of Assignment
    : The teacher counts and FTEs are displayed in five subgroups.
    "Self-contained classroom" means the person teaches a group of children in a self-contained setting, usually one of the grades kindergarten through eight or a combination class.
    "Subject area" means the person teaches several different classes in one or more subject area, such as English, math, social science, science, foreign language, art, etc.; a subject area teacher usually works in grades 7-12.
    "Vocational education" and "special education" refer to teachers in those specialized areas and courses.
    The "Other" subgroup is for those teaching Independent Study, Alternative/Opportunity Education, resource teachers, and other instructional assignments.
    To the extent one or more of the teachers at the school does not work full time or other staff teach part time, the FTE number will be smaller or larger than the number of teachers. A teacher is only to be reported at one school, so if a teacher works at two or more schools, the count on the profile may be slightly distorted.

    Teaching Credentials
    (CBEDS): The types of teaching credentials held by certificated staff, excluding administrative or pupil service personnel. Each of the five teaching credential types is followed by the number of staff at the school reported to hold that credential. Besides teachers that have full credentials or are in the Internship program, some teachers may have emergency permits (do not qualify for a credential or internship but meet minimum requirements and go on to gain their credential) or waivers (individuals hired when the school is unable to find credentialed or emergency permit teachers). Teachers may also be in a Pre-Intern program that is designed to help teachers qualify for an internship or full credential.
    Since a person may hold more than one credential, the total number of credentials may be greater than the total number of teachers. In cases where the credential information was not reported for a staff member, or in charter schools where credentials depend on provisions of the charter, the total number of credentials may be less than the number of teachers.

    Teachers by Ethnicity
    (CBEDS): The number and percent of teachers reported by ethnic groups (for definitions of each of the ethnic groups refer to the section titled Students by Ethnicity).

    Classified Staff
    (CBEDS): The number of classified staff at the school. A classified employee is anyone in a position that does not require a certification.

    The classified staff is listed in three subgroups, with an individual staff member counted in only one of the subgroups. The "Paraprofessional" subgroup includes teaching assistants, teacher aides, pupil services aides, and library aides. "Office/clerical" staff are those with clerical or administrative support duties, such as the school secretary. The "Other" subgroup includes all the remaining non-certificated staff, including custodians, bus drivers, and cafeteria workers.

    These classified staff do not include preschool, adult education, or Regional Occupation Program employees. The data are not collected in a manner that will allow full time equivalent reporting.
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    Ed-Data is a partnership of the California Department of Education, EdSource and the Fiscal Crisis & Management Assistance Team (FCMAT) designed to offer educators, policy makers, the legislature, parents, and the public quick access to timely and comprehensive data about K-12 education in California.