Post 16 Learning Aims Collection in Autumn 2017 Census

This bulletin lists the latest information regarding the POST 16 collection School Autumn Census. It contains links to relevant documentation and information on the latest filesets, patches and errors. Please note that a separate bulletin has been created for all schools regarding the Autumn Census.

Useful links and documentation

Preparing Data for Post 16 Census

Information about how 16 to 19 funding is allocated for colleges, providers, schools and academies.

Funding guidance for 2016 to 2017


Date Description

In advance of the 2016 autumn census we hope you will find it useful that below we have repeated information previously published on QWS latest news on 16 December 2016. This is intended to save you time if you have questions that may be answered by reference to the following information about KS4 and Post 16 discount codes:

Please be aware that the discount codes listed on QWS may not necessarily be the ones in use for KS4 performance tables. The codes in use on QWS apply to 16-18 performance tables only and for many qualifications different codes are used in KS4. KS4 discount codes can be found at RAISEonline ( by clicking on the tab ‘Further details of the revised performance tables qualifications, discount rules and early entrance guidance from 2014’.

Discount code changes – food and beverage service

For reasons of consistency it has been necessary to amend the discount codes for some QANs. These QANs are for food and beverage service. This action will not affect schools who do not use these QANs. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. The QANs are: 50065336, 50067540, 50074544, 60048323.

Further news is available from the news section of the DfE QAN Web Site (


06/10/2016 Two Year Learning Aim Issue – wrong planned end date when students transfer or withdraw

Where membership of a course is expected to last two years, schools can set the duration to two years and Update Course Memberships and this should set the expected end date to the end of July in the next academic year.  This means that, for a course that is given a Duration of two years and has a start date in September, running Update Course Membership should always assign an end date of the 31st July two years hence (unless the membership information has been protected by the school).  Unfortunately, where a student withdraws or transfers from such a course during the first of the two years, Update Course Membership should continue to set the expected end date to the 31st July two years hence, but actually sets it the 31st July one year hence.

For example, if a student started a two year A-level last year and change to the AS-Level during the first year, the expected end date for the original two year A-Level should be 31/07/2017, but is actually incorrectly set to 31/07/2016.

Schools can use the Compare with Previous Autumn report in the Census application to find out if they have this problem, as any difference in expected end dates between this year’s and last year’s expected end date will be highlighted.  Schools can avoid the problem for the Census by leaving “Populated planned end dates from previous return” selected when calculating the Learning Aims panel, or they can bulk update the P End Dates in the Learning Aims panel.  Please let us know if neither of these methods of avoidance is acceptable, as we would then need to look into providing a patch for Update Course Membership.

29/09/2016 Core Learning Aims

We have been made aware that the EFA has reported back to schools a possible loss of funding due to the Core Learning Aim not being identified for students on vocational or mixed academic/vocational courses of study.

The core aim is used:

  • to calculate programme cost weighting
  • to determine whether a student is retained on the programme or not,
  • and whether the programme is academic or vocational.

If a student is on a purely academic course of study you do not need to identify the core learning aim for that student.  Click here to see which programmes of study are considered academic.

The Core Learning Aims for a student can be identified in Sims through the route Focus / Student / Courses on a student by student basis, or alternately you can tick the Core Learning Aim in the Memberships and Results section of a course through Tools / Academic Management / Course Manager (change the view to Current Year before you search and open up the course).


29/09/2016 Prior Attainment for Maths and English at GCSE

Click here to see Maths and English UK GCSE Equivalences

Patch 22249 is available on request to copy prior attainment from the previous Autumn Census.


  1. Where relevant Prior Attainment data exists for 2015, but not for 2016, the data for 2015 will be added to 2016
  2. Where relevant Prior Attainment data exists for 2015 and for 2016, the data for 2016 will be overwritten with the data for 2015
  3. Where relevant Prior Attainment data exists for 2016, but not for 2015, the data for 2016 will persist

Please note:  the patch will overwrite information already entered in the Maths and English Prior Attainment window for 2016. For that reason it is not recommended for Post 16 schools where the majority of their pupils were in school for KS4. Populate from Exams will be the quicker route in that scenario.


24/08/2016 Two year courses – end dates not adjusting for 2016/2017. Some schools are reporting that the planned end date and actual end date are not the same resulting in a status of withdrawn being assigned for the second year of a two year course. Capita are aware of this problem – the workaround is to use the Bulk Update / Tolerance Completion through the route Tools/Academic Management/Course Manager/Bulk Update Courses to resolve this issue.

REMINDER! Prior Attainment in Maths and English and implications to Post 16 Funding

We understand that the EFA can refuse all funding for a Post 16 student if prior attainment in either Maths or English has not been achieved, there are no exemptions and there is no suitable Maths or English learning aim is showing for that student in the Census.It might be useful for schools to refer to the ‘2015-16 EFA Lack of Prior Attainment in Maths and English List.xlsx‘. This workbook provides the following lists.

  • The English sheet lists all QNs found on the LARS website for 2015/16 that will be accepted for funding where students have not achieved the specified prior attainment in English.
  • The Maths sheet lists all QNs found on the LARS website for 2015/16 that will be accepted for funding where students have not achieved the specified prior attainment in Maths

NEW! Traineeship indicator for Post 16 Learning AimsIt is necessary for schools to indicate those Post 16 Learning Aim for the new year (2016/17) that are part of a Traineeship. It will not be collecting retrospectively for the previous year (2015/16).A Traineeship will normally include the Learning Aims “work experience” and “work preparation” and may include the Learning Aims “Maths” and “English” alongside. However, it is quite possible for pupils who follow these Learning Aims not to be involved with a Traineeship. Further guidance on traineeships and work experience can be found here.

Posted in Bulletin.