Data set from Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Table 1B - Daily attendance in education settings during the COVID-19 outbreak (excludes half term dates 19th October - 23rd October and 2nd November)

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This file contains daily attendance data for state-funded education settings for dates excluding half term dates. Half term includes  19th October - 23rd October 2020, 2nd November 2020, and  15 February - 19 February 2021.

Data is in this file has been scaled to account for non-response so it is nationally representative.

Further details on the column headings can be found in the “Table 1b variable additions and removal log” ancillary file.

Data set details

Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic
Release type
Geographic levels
  • number of children of critical workers attending
  • number of fully open settings
  • number of open settings including inset
  • date
  • phase
Time period
2020 Week 37 to 2021 Week 9

Data set preview

Table showing first 5 rows, from underlying data
2020Week 37NationalE92000001England09/09/2020State-funded schools71153002160099.91970090.9--714800087657800090.3----------------------
2020Week 37NationalE92000001England10/09/2020State-funded schools73158002160099.92000092.4--723100088674700090----------------------
2020Week 37NationalE92000001England11/09/2020State-funded schools73157002160099.92010092.7--713000086.8669900088.713300082.21250008423200080.921700083.3--------------
2020Week 38NationalE92000001England14/09/2020State-funded schools75162002160099.92050094.8--711800086.4676800087.413300082.212600083.223100080.721800082.5--------------
2020Week 38NationalE92000001England15/09/2020State-funded schools76164002160099.92040094.4--714500086.7674500087.713300081.81250008323100080.521700082.3--------------

Variables in this data set

Table showing first 5 of 36 variables
Variable nameVariable description
number_children_of_critical_workers_attendingnumber of children of critical workers attending
number_fully_open_settingsnumber of fully open settings
number_of_otherwise_vulnerable_students_attendingnumber of otherwise vulnerable students attending
number_of_settings_with_one_or_more_students_self_isolating_due_to_COVID_contact_within_settingsnumber of settings with one or more students self isolating due to COVID contact within settings


  1. From 12 October 2020, the education settings survey changed and this new metric was added. The changes were made to give more comprehensive data about how many pupils are self-isolating for different reasons. There are no comparable figures to these from previous weeks.
  2. The number of students on-site is calculated using a grossing methodology. This includes reported attendance from responding colleges and estimates of attendance in non-responding colleges. Two further education colleges are excluded from these metrics due to missing data used for the grossing methodology. See the methodology for further information.
  3. There are only a small number of special post 16 settings therefore the data is expected to be variable and sensitive to changes in one or more settings.
  4. On 25 September and 2 October 2020, 1% of state-funded schools reported an inset or training day. Schools or colleges with inset or training days are considered as 'open' but not 'fully open'.
  5. Secondary schools and colleges were given flexibility to phase the return of pupils between 8 and 12 March 2021 to manage testing and the return of pupils. This impacted attendance rates during the week commencing 8 March 2021.
  6. From 12 October 2020, schools were asked to exclude nursery children from their submission. A corresponding decrease was observed in submitted number on roll in schools with nurseries.
  7. On Wednesday 7 October 2020, a burst water pipe in East London resulted in a number of schools closing.
  8. From 12 October 2020, the education settings survey changed and this metric was discontinued. The changes were made to give more comprehensive data about how many pupils are self-isolating for different reasons.
  9. Open rates are rounded to 1dp for state-funded primary, state-funded secondary, state-funded special and all state-funded schools. For other phases, rates are reported to 0dp and where 100% of settings report they are open, this is reported as 99% given level of uncertainty around these estimates due to lower response rates and/or small population sizes.
  10. All national level figures are adjusted for non-response. Regional and local authority level figures are based on responding schools only. See accompanying document for full methodology.
  11. Response rates among state-funded schools fell on 17 December 2020 by 7 percentage points compared to the previous day. Some schools reported inset days or non-COVID related closures on 17 December 2020 (1% of responders). Schools are not required to complete the form if on a planned holiday, such as Christmas break and, previously, decreases in response rates have been associated with an increase in school closures. As a result, it is likely there is a greater proportion of closures among non-responders than responder and we do not know the distribution of these between i) COVID-related closures and ii) schools starting Christmas holidays or having inset days as planned. Therefore, estimates for 17 December 2020 are less reliable than previous days and likely overestimate open and attendance rates.
  12. Schools are considered fully open if they are able to provide face-to-face teaching for all pupils on roll for the whole school day and they have not asked a group of pupils to self-isolate. School guidance states that where pupils are unable to attend school because they are complying with clinical or public health advice, schools are expected to be able to immediately offer them access to remote education.
  13. Due to poor weather conditions in parts of England, there was an increase in non-COVID related closures on 14, 15, 25 and 26 January, and 2, 8, 9, 10 and 11 February 2021.
  14. Figures for independent schools are unlikely to be representative. We looked at a sample of non-responding school websites across different phases to assess whether they were open to children of key workers and vulnerable children. This was to enable us to assess whether non-responding schools were as likely to be open as the responding schools. For independent schools, we found evidence that non-responding schools were more likely to be closed than responding schools. Open rates and attendance rates for independent schools are likely to be lower than reported here.
  15. The number absent is rounded to the nearest 100, therefore there are some instances where figures between 1 and 49 are rounded to zero.
  16. Pupils with a social worker are considered ‘children in need’. Our analysis after adjusting for non-response suggests that schools may be under-reporting the number of children with a social worker when compared to the most recently published children in need statistics. Therefore these estimates only account for pupils with a social worker that are identified by schools.
  17. The purpose of this data collection is primarily to understand attendance and teacher availability. This data is reported directly by schools via DfE's daily education settings survey. It is not the primary source of data on infection, incidence and COVID-19 cases overall.
  18. The educational settings survey asks further education providers to report data for the previous day. As such, data collected and presented in this publication for further education and special post-16 settings reports on a day earlier than for other settings.
  19. Vulnerable children include those who have a social worker, an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) or are identified as otherwise vulnerable by educational providers or local authorities. The number of children who are otherwise vulnerable is calculated by subtracting the number of children of critical workers and the number of children who have a social worker and/or an EHCP from the total number of children in attendance. The otherwise vulnerable measure is an estimate and is not equivalent in quality to other attendance figures. To see in more detail how the number of children who have a social worker and/or an EHCP is calculated, please see the methodology.

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