Understanding Data

Dictionary of Data Terms

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Safe and Supportive Schools

Attendance Rate

The percentage of time enrolled students were present during each district's required instructional days per year. The state mandates a minimum of 180 days.

Safe and Supportive Schools

Chronic Absenteeism

The percentage of students who missed 10% or more school days during the year. This calculation only includes students who were enrolled at least 90 days in a given school or district.

Safe and Supportive Schools

Four-Year Graduation Rate

The percentage of students who enrolled in the 9th grade and graduated from high school four years later.

Dropped Out: The percentage of students who enrolled in the 9th grade, but withdrew from school, including those (students) who exited their school for unknown reasons. In 2012 the Legislature raised the legal age at which a student could formally withdraw from 16 to 18 years of age. Therefore, the data will be inconsistent after the 2012-13 year because those previously recorded as "dropped out" will now be considered "absent."

Received GED: The percentage of students in a "cohort," defined as those who entered the 9th grade together, who chose to obtain a General Equivalency Diploma (GED) instead of completing four years of high school, graduating with their class and earning a conventional high-school diploma.

Still in School: The percentage of students who stay in school longer than four years to complete their high school diploma.

Safe and Supportive Schools

Five-Year Graduation Rate

The total percentage of graduates adding together those who graduated on time with their original 9th grade cohort and those in the same cohort who graduated a year later, after five years in high school.

Percent Graduated within 4 Years: This is the percentage of students who enrolled in the 9th grade and graduated from high school four years later.

Percent Graduated in 5 Years: This is the percentage of students who graduated high school five years after they first enrolled in the 9th grade.

Percent Graduated within 5 Years: This is the percentage of students who enrolled in the 9th grade and graduated from high school either four or five years later.

Safe and Supportive Schools

Stability Index

The proportion of the total student enrollment who stayed in the same school throughout the school year. The rate is calculated by taking the number of students who are members of a school for 170 days or more and dividing by the total number of students enrolled in the school during the year.

Safe and Supportive Schools

Mobility Index

The rate of student turnover, or the percentage of students who moved into or out of the school during the school year. The rate is calculated by taking the total number of students entering or leaving a school between October 1st and June 1st divided by the average daily membership in the school during the school year.

Note: The stability and mobility indicators measure different phenomena and are not inverses of one another. The mobility index measures the rate of flow through the non-stable portion of the student body. Together, the two indicators describe the degree of turnover in the school and its potentially disruptive effect on the classroom environment.

Safe and Supportive Schools

Incidents of Suspension - Consequences

Out of School Suspension: The temporary dismissal of a student from classes by duly authorized school personnel in accordance with established regulation. Students serve their suspension outside of school. According to 2102 legislation, students may not be suspended out-of-school for attendance-related offenses.

In School Suspension: The temporary dismissal of a student from class by duly authorized school personnel in accordance with established regulation. Students serve their time in these suspensions under supervision during school hours, for at least half of the school's day.

Alternative Placement: Placed in an alternative program for disciplinary reasons.

Safe and Supportive Schools

Incidents of Suspension - Infractions

Alcohol: Possession, use or sale of intoxicating alcoholic beverages.

Arson: To unlawfully and intentionally damage, or attempt to damage any real or personal property by fire or incendiary device.

Assault of a Student by a Student: An actual intentional touching or striking of another student against his or her will or intentionally causing bodily harm to an individual. This category should be used only when the attack is very serious, to warrant calling the school administration, the police, or bringing in security, where the intent is to do bodily harm to someone.

Assault of a Teacher or Other School Staff by a Student: An actual intentional touching or striking of a teacher or staff member against his or her will or intentionally causing bodily harm to an individual. This category should be used only when the attack is very serious, to warrant calling the school administration, the police, or bringing in security, where the intent is to do bodily harm to someone.

Attendance - Cut/Skipped Class: Absence from class.

Attendance - Cut/Skipped Detention: Absence from detention.

Attendance - Left School Grounds: Leaving school grounds without permission.

Attendance - Tardy: Tardy to school or class.

Attendance - Truant: Absent for the day without authorization.

* Note: According to 2012 legislation, students may no longer be suspended out-of-school for attendance-related offenses.

Bomb Threat: Threatening to cause mental or physical harm to occupants of a school or to a school building by using a bomb or other incendiary device.

Breaking and Entering: The unlawful entry into a school building or other property with the intent to commit a crime.

Communication/Electronic Devices: Having on one’s person a paging device, cellular telephone, or other electronic communication device that violates an individual school's Code of Conduct.

Controlled Substances - Possession or Under the Influence: The unlawful use, cultivation, manufacture, distribution, purchase, possession, transportation or importation of any controlled drug or narcotic substance, or equipment and device used for preparing or taking drugs or narcotics. Includes being under the influence of drugs or substances represented as drugs (including over the counter and prescription medications) on school transportation, at school-sponsored events or at school.

Controlled Substances - Possession with Intent to Sell: The possession of a marketable quantity of any controlled drug or narcotic substance or equipment and devices used for preparing or taking drugs or narcotics. Category includes over-the-counter and prescription medications if abused by students.

Controlled Substances - Sale of: The sale of any controlled drug or narcotic substance or equipment and devices used for preparing or taking drugs or narcotics. Category includes over-the-counter and prescription medications if abused by students.

Disorderly Conduct - serious class or campus disruption, etc.: Any act which substantially disrupts the orderly conduct of a school function. This includes behavior which substantially disrupts the orderly learning environment or poses a threat to the health, safety, and/or welfare of students, staff, or others.

Extortion: Unlawfully obtaining money, property, or any other thing of value, either tangible or intangible, through the use or threat of force, misuse of authority, threat of criminal persecution, threat of destruction of reputation or social standing, or through other coercive means.

Fighting - mutual altercation: Mutual participation in a fight involving physical violence, where there is no one main offender. Does not include verbal confrontations, tussles or other minor confrontations.

Fire Regulations Violation: Creating a false fire alarm; pulling alarm; possession of matches or lighters.

Forgery: Forging or tampering with school documents. Examples are changing grades or signing permission slips.

Gambling: Unlawfully betting or wagering money or something else of value; assisting, promoting or operating a game of chance; tampering with the outcome of a sporting event or contest to gain a gambling advantage.

Gang Activity: Behavior characterized by turf concerns, symbols, special dress, or colors among a somewhat organized group of some duration.

Harassment - Sexual: Unwanted, repeated, verbal or physical sexual behavior which is offensive and objectionable to the recipient, causing discomfort or humiliation and interfering with school performance.

Harassment - Stalking: Threatening by following or watching or placing another in fear of receiving bodily harm, sexual assault, confinement, or restraint and following or watching the intended victim.

Harassment - Verbal/Physical: Verbal or physical conduct relating to an individual’s membership in a class -- including, but not limited to, perceived race, religion, color, sexual orientation, ethnicity, ancestry, national origin, political beliefs, marital status, age, social and family background, linguistic preference, or disability that creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working or learning environment.

Hate Crimes: An action motivated by hate due to some characteristics or perceived characteristics of the victim. Any act, or attempted act, to cause physical injury, emotional suffering or property damage through intimidation, harassment, racial/ethnic slurs and bigoted epithets, vandalism, force, motivated all or in part by hostility to the victim’s real or perceived race, religion, color, sexual orientation, ethnicity, ancestry, national origin, political beliefs, marital status, age, social and family background, linguistic preference, or disability. These actions create an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational environment.

Hazing: Method of initiation into any organization, group, club, etc., which causes or is likely to cause bodily danger, harm, personal degradation, disgrace, humiliation, or mental harm.

Insubordination/Disrespect: Refusing a directive of a teacher, administrator or other staff member.

Kidnapping/Abduction: The unlawful seizure, transportation and/or detention of a person against his/her will, or of a minor without the consent of his/her custodial parent(s) or legal guardian.

Larceny - personal or school property, or from vehicle on school property: The unlawful taking, carrying, leading or riding away of property of another person without threat, violence or bodily harm. Included are pocket picking, purse or backpack snatching if left unattended or no force used to take it from owner, theft from a building, theft from a motor vehicle or motor vehicle parts or accessories, theft of bicycles, theft.

Obscene/Abusive Language or Gestures Directed Toward a Student: To direct pornographic images, gestures or obscene language, verbally or in writing, to a student.

Obscene/Abusive Language or Gestures Directed Toward Staff: To direct pornographic images, gestures or obscene language, verbally or in writing, to a staff member.

Other: Any school conduct violation/incident resulting in short- or long-term suspension not classified in other required codes.

Threat/Intimidation physical or verbal threat or intimidation: Unlawful placement of another person in fear of bodily harm through verbal threats, without displaying a weapon or subjecting the person to actual physical attack. This also includes bullying.

Bullying: Repeated negative behaviors either physical or mental, which target a specific victim. Behaviors may include, but not be limited to, threats, verbal or written abuse, physical abuse, harassment, ethnic or gender slurs, targeting a specific victim.

Tobacco - possession or use: Where applicable, the possession, use, distribution or sale of tobacco products on school grounds, school-sponsored events and on transportation to and from school or other school transportation.

Trespassing: To enter or remain on a public school campus without authorization or invitation and with no lawful purpose for entry.

Unauthorized Use of Computers or any Other Technology: Willfully causing or attempting to cause damage to software, operating systems, data files, or unauthorized or inappropriate use of technology, as defined by the local code of conduct. This includes any violation of local technology policies.

Vandalism - destruction of school or personal property: The willful and/or malicious destruction, damage or defacement of public or private property, real or personal, without the consent of the owner of the person having custody or control of it. This category includes graffiti.

Examples include: incidents such as destroying school computer records, carving initials or words in desktop or spray painting on walls.

Weapon Possession on school property - includes firearms and other weapons: Firearms: A firearm "is any weapon (including a starter gun) which is designed to, or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive; the frame or receiver of any such weapon; any firearm muffler or firearm silencer, any destructive device; or any machine gun." A destructive device is any bomb, grenade, mine, rocket, rocket, missile, pipebomb, or similar device continuing some type of explosive that is designed to explode and is capable of causing bodily harm or property damage. Includes firearms of any kind (operable or inoperable, loaded or unloaded): including but not limited to hand, zip, pistol, rifle, starter gun, flare gun and realistic replica.

Other Weapons: Possession, use or intention of use of any instrument or object to inflict harm on another person, to intimidate any person. Included in this category are all types of knives, chains (any not being used for the purpose for which it was normally intended and capable of harming an individual) pipe (any length or metal not being used for the purpose it was normally intended), razor blades or similar instruments (including pencils, pens), nunchakus, brass knuckles. Chinese stars, billy clubs, tear gas gun, electrical weapon or device (stun gun), or BB or pellet gun, explosives or propellants. Possession of any type of knife (including a pocket or penknife) is included here.

A note on InfoWorks data reporting: To ensure confidentiality, data are not reported for groups with fewer than 10 students, so that no individual student is identifiable. Where this is the case, InfoWorks reports "too few data." Also, "no data" is used to point out instances where data are not available for a particular state, district, or school indicator.