This Statistical Topic Note will be of interest to anyone working with data that involves the ethnic classification of school pupils in 2002 and 2003. It relates specifically to data items that form part of the Pupil Level Annual Schools' Census (PLASC). In 2002 schools were given the option of using either new ethnic categories based upon the 2001 National Census or continuing with old (pre 2001 Census) ethnic categories. The vast majority of pupils were reported in 2002 under the old codes but the new codes were made compulsory for the PLASC 2003 data collection. Dr Ray Godfrey (Canterbury Christ Church University College) has carried out extensive analyses of the records of those pupils present in both PLASC 2002 and 2003. His results reveal a complex relationship between the old and new ethnic codes used in the two years.

Contact details

Lorraine Watson
Telephone: 020 7925 5403
Email: Lorraine.Watson@education.gsi.gov.uk