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Numbers of schools and pupils

This section contains data gathered as part of the annual school census exercise. The census takes place in October of each year and is a count of all pupils attending schools in Northern Ireland. Data are collected from schools using both paper forms and electronic data interchange.  

The school census gathers details on, for example, pupil gender, year group, religion, ethnicity, special educational needs, etc. Schools are classified according to type, or management type, to allow analysis of various sectors to take place.  Geographical analysis is also conducted, at various levels, for example at Education and Library Board and District Council levels.

Data are presented at Northern Ireland summary level, Education and Library Board level and school level.  Statistical releases issued by the Department, in relation to enrolments can be accessed here.

Additional information on proceses and procedures involved in collation of school enrolment data is also available.

The annual publication from the census, on enrolments at schools and in funded pre-school education, recently underwent assessment by the United Kingdon Statistics Authority.  Actions resulting from requirements specified in the assessment are outlined here.

We welcome any feedback from users on the content, format and accessibility of our statistics. Please contact us at if you have any comments.