Australian Bureau of Statistics

Rate this page
ABS Home > Methods & Standards > Directory of Statistical Sources by Topic
ABS @ Facebook ABS @ Twitter ABS RSS ABS Email notification service
Schools Statistics Collection (National)
   Page tools: RSS Feed RSS Bookmark and Share Search this Product

    Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)


    The National Schools Statistics Collection (NSSC) is a census, conducted annually as a collaborative arrangement between State, Territory and Commonwealth education authorities and the ABS. Data is collected from the relevant authorities on a range of issues relating to schools, students and staff in primary and secondary schools throughout Australia, from both the government and non-government sectors. Schools, Australia (ABS Cat. No. 4221.0) publishes information on the number, age, sex, year/level, category of school, apparent retention rate and participation rates of students at both the State and national levels. As well, information on school staff is published at State and national level.


    The purpose of the collection is to provide nationally comparable data on primary and secondary schools, students and staff. Results are used extensively by governments and private organisations in a range of industries which supply the vast education market.


    The scope of the Schools collection consists of students and staff of all establishments which have as their major activity the administration or provision of full-time day primary, secondary and/or special education (or primary or secondary education by distance education). This includes establishments from both the government and non-government sectors.

    Coverage rules are not necessary for the NSSC as, being a census, data is collected on the one day.


    Conceptual framework

    The data for this census is collected from State Education authorities (government schools ) and Dept. Education Science and training (DEST) (non government schools), according to agreed standard definitions, instructions and tabulations developed by the ABS. This document ensures accurate and comparable statistics on schools, sex, year, age and numbers of students, and number and full-time equivalent (FTE) of school and non-school staff working in schools, from both the government and non-government sectors.

    Main outputs

    Tabulations and graphics are included in the main publication (ABS Cat. No. 4221.0)


    Schools (type)

    School staff (teaching/non-teaching)
    Non-school staff

    Students (full-time/part-time/number/sex/age/year level/primary/secondary/Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander (ATSI))


    Other concepts (summary)

    Not applicable

    1. National & State/Territory\1.01 Australia
    1. National & State/Territory\1.02 All States & Territories

    Comments and/or Other Regions

    Education services in Jervis Bay Territory are provided by the ACT Department of Education and Community Services, through Commonwealth government funding . For the purposes of the NSSC, figures for Jervis Bay Territory are included in statistics for the ACT .


    Frequency comments


    1981 - 1983 Data collected related to government schools only.

    1984 onwards Addition of non-government schools data.

    1985 - 1989 Special education data referring only to special schools.

    1989 onwards Staff categorisation change (ie. specialist support staff not included in teaching staff).

    1989 onwards Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander data included for the first time.

    1990 onwards Students and staff of special schools not identified separately.

    1995 onwards Part-time secondary students by number and full-time equivalent (FTE), by Level/Year of education and by category of school included for the first time.

    1998 onwards Apparent retention rates to years 10, 11 and 12 included for the first time.


    Data availability comments

    Majority of data is published.

    28/05/2002 08:24 AM

Bookmark and Share. Opens in a new window

Commonwealth of Australia 2016

Unless otherwise noted, content on this website is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Australia Licence together with any terms, conditions and exclusions as set out in the website Copyright notice. For permission to do anything beyond the scope of this licence and copyright terms contact us.