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Accuracy Certification Statement (ACS)

A statement containing specific, collection-based data elements that must be verified and signed by the PIMS Administrator, data administrator, and Chief School Officer of a Local Education Agency (LEA) before being sent to the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE).

Administrative Unit Number (AUN)

A 9-digit number assigned by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) to uniquely identify entities such as school districts, intermediate units, career and technical centers, charter schools, non-public and private schools, higher education institutions, state juvenile correctional institutions, dioceses, private residential rehabilitation institutions, private driver training schools, and libraries.

Adult Affidavit Program (AAP)

Particular, Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE)-approved, Career and Technical Education Information System (CATS)-registered programs including Registered Apprenticeship, Emergency Service and Other Occupational programs.  Student data is reported to PIMS to meet state and federal (Perkins IV) reporting requirements.

Alternative Education for Disruptive Youth (AEDY)

A Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE)-approved program that provides a combination of intense, individual academic instruction and behavior modification counseling in an alternative setting to assist students in returning successfully to their regular classroom.

Approved Private Schools (APS)

Private schools, licensed by the State Board of Private Academic Schools, that provide a free appropriate special education for students with severe disabilities and are eligible to receive funds from the school districts and/or the Commonwealth for the education of these students.  For a full list of Pennsylvania’s Approved Private Schools, please follow this link.

Area Vocational Technical School (AVTS)

A public school which provides vocational education to secondary school students, out-of-school youth and adults in a geographical area comprised and operated by one or more school districts and established under Article XVIII (Subdivision C) of the Public School Code of 1949.

Average Daily Attendance (ADA)

The total number of days present (attendance) divided by the actual total number of student days in the regular school year.

Average Daily Membership (ADM)

The total numbers of days enrolled (days present plus days absent) divided by the actual total number of student days in the regular school year.


Basic Education Circular (BEC)

A document that provides guidance from the Pennsylvania Department of Education relating to the Pennsylvania Public School Code of 1949, State Board of Education Regulations and Standards, and Federal law and regulations.

Batch Manager

The area where PIMS data batches are processed and viewed.  As a batch is processed, each template is checked one at a time by dependencies for validity while it is being loaded into the PIMS warehouse. The DQE process happens before the batch processes.


Career and Technical Education (CTE)

A program of study that involves a multiyear sequence of courses that integrates core academic knowledge with technical and occupational knowledge to provide students with a pathway to postsecondary education and careers.

Career and Technical Education Domain

In this domain, Career and Technical Education (CTE) Student Fact Template and the CTE Student Industry Credential Template are submitted to PIMS.  Only local education agencies with Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE)-approved, reimbursable secondary career and technical education programs or registered adult affidavit programs offered by their schools during the reporting year submit to this domain.  These submissions track reportable enrollees and earned industry certifications.

Career and Technical Education Information System (CATS)

The system used by Career and Technical Education for the purpose of satisfying Federal and State requirements related to LEA documentation and BCTE approval and/or acceptance of (1) LEA secondary reimbursable Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs or (2) registered adult affidavit CTE programs. The system accepts updates from school districts, area vocational technical schools, charter schools, and intermediate units, as appropriate, for career/technical education programs.

Career and Technology Center (CTC)

A public school which provides vocational education to secondary school students, out-of-school youth and adults in a geographical area comprised and operated by one or more school districts and established under Article XVIII (Subdivision C) of the Public School Code of 1949.

Charter School (CS)

An independent, public school designed by local citizens, established and operated under a charter from the local board of school directors.

Chief School Administrator

An individual who is employed as a school district superintendent, an executive director of an intermediate unit, a chief executive officer of a charter school, or a director of an area vocational-technical school or career technology center.

Child Accounting Domain

The collection of attendance and membership data used in the calculation of state subsidies and each local education agency’s tuition rate.  The School Calendar Template and the Student Calendar Fact Template are to be submitted in this domain by school districts, intermediate units, career and technology centers, charter schools, private residential rehabilitation institutions and approved private schools.

Classroom Diagnostic Testing (CDT)

A set of online assessments, divided by content area, designed to provide diagnostic information in order to guide instruction and remediation.

Course and Grades Domain

This domain deals with local education agency reportable courses, student course enrollment, and staff student course relationships.  The Course, Course Instructor, and Staff Student Course Templates are submitted to this domain by school districts, intermediate units, career and technology centers, charter schools and state juvenile correctional institutions.  A bulk of the data submitted to the domain supports initiatives like Educator Effectiveness (EE) and School Performance Profile (SPP).


Data Governance

A quality control discipline that encompasses the people, processes and information technology to create consistent and proper handling of data.

Data Quality Engine (DQE)

A component of PIMS that validates data within and across data sets. The Data Quality Engine (DQE) is used to increase the overall quality of data while decreasing overall errors.

Data Set Calendar

The calendar used by local education agencies to manage collection windows, correction windows, snapshot dates, accuracy certification statement (ACS) due dates.  This calendar also details required, optional and update only templates per collection, as well as planned trainings provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) staff.

Discipline Domain

This domain is used to track school safety incidents involving all students, including special education students.  School districts, intermediate units, career and technology centers and charter schools report to this domain.  The required templates include Incident, Person, Incident Offender, Incident Offender Infraction, Incident Offender Disciplinary Action, Incident Offender Parent Involvement and Incident Victim.

District Domain

This domain includes two templates, the District Fact Template and the District Snapshot Template. The District Fact Template captures data related to Limited English Proficiency (LEP), Title 1, School Choice and their professional activities appropriately. The District Snapshot Template is uploaded by all school districts and charter schools with kindergarten programs and is data related to kindergarten entry age requirements.


Education Names and Addresses (EdNA)

Educational Names and Addresses (EdNA) is an online tool that can be used to find the names, addresses, administrators, and related information about the educational entities that the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) serves. For access to EdNA’s website, please follow this link.

Educator Effectiveness (EE)

Pennsylvania-legislated model for evaluating teachers, all professional and temporary professional employees, education specialists, and school administrators/principals, while providing training tools for professional growth that provides support as part of a fair effective evaluation process.

English Learner (EL)

A student whose dominant language is not English and who is in the process of learning English.

Enrollment Domain

The School Enrollment Template is the only required template within this domain.  It is submitted by school districts, intermediate units, career and technology centers, charter schools, state juvenile correctional institutions, private residential rehabilitation institutions, and approved private schools.  Student mobility (enrollment and withdrawal transactions) at each school is tracked within this domain.

eScholar Data Manager (eDM)

The secure web interface utilized by authorized PIMS users that guides and controls data as it moves through the extract, transform and load process.  

Extract, Transform, and Load (ETL)

The process, as it refers to PIMS, is the usage of database warehousing that extracts data from outside submitted data sets, transforms the data to fit operational needs (file and batch managers), then loads the data into a data warehouse (PIMS) for local, state and Federal use.


Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.

File Manager

The component of the eScholar Data Manager that allows you to upload files to the eScholar Data Manager, review files and file details that have been uploaded, download files, delete files and view, create and process batches.

Full-Time Equivalent (FTE)

A unit that indicates the workload of an employed person (or student) in a way that makes workloads comparable across various contexts. A Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) of 1.0 means that the person is equivalent to a full-time worker or enrolled student.


Groups and Programs Domain

The Programs Fact Template is submitted through this domain.  School districts, intermediate units, career and technology centers, charter schools, approved private schools, private residential rehabilitation institutions and state juvenile correctional institutions submit this template if appropriate.  This template and domain track participation for specific programs found in Volume 2, Appendix F of the PIMS Manual.


Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)

United States Government legislation the ensures a person's right to buy health insurance after losing a job, establishes standards for electronic medical records, and protects the privacy of a patient's health information. 

Homeless Student

A student who lacks a fixed, regular, adequate nighttime residence or has a primary nighttime residence in a supervised, publicly or privately operated shelter for temporary accommodations.


Individualized Education Plan (IEP)

A written statement for a child with a disability that is developed, reviewed, and revised in a team meeting in accordance with the regulations governing special education programs in Pennsylvania. The Individualized Education Plan (IEP) specifies the individual educational needs of the child and what education and related services are necessary to meet those needs. 

Instructional Responsibility

One or more professional or temporary professional educators charged with planning, instructing, and/or assessing course content and student progressions within the course of study.

Interscholastic Athletic Opportunities Domain

This domain collects data for PIMS through the Location Fact Template.  The template is used to submit the results of the Interscholastic Athletic Opportunities Disclosure Form.  School districts, comprehensive career and technology centers, and charter schools with schools that educate students in any grades 7 through 12.

ISO Format

An international standard format for the date (YYYY-MM-DD) used in all PIMS fields that require a date. For example School Year Date, Date of Birth, etc.  This format (YYYYMMDDHHMM) is also used as the timestamp for PIMS templates to successfully submit in File Manager.


Juveniles Incarcerated in Adult Facilities (JIAF)

Students under or of twenty-one years of age who are confined to an adult local correctional institution following a charge for a criminal offense.  These students shall be eligible for educational services in the same manner and to the same extent as a student who has been placed in an alternative education program for disruptive students.


Key Field

Fields coded as “K” or “K*” in the PIMS Manual Volume 1. These fields, once uploaded, cannot be overwritten. In this situation if uploaded data with a key field needs to be corrected, the entire record first must be deleted by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) staff and then the corrected record must be uploaded. A field or a group of fields coded as “K” or “K*” which together form a unique identifier for a record.

Keystone Exam

End-of-course assessments designed to assess proficiency in the subject areas of Algebra I, Literature, and Biology.


Language Instruction Educational Program (LIEP)

A student who does not speak English as their primary language and who has a limited ability to read, speak, write, or understand English.  These students may be entitled to language assistance.

Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)

Also known as Educational Environment in the Special Education Snapshot Template, this is the indicator located within an exceptional student’s individualized education program. This details to what extent the student is included, if at all, with their non-disabled peers.

Local Education Agency (LEA)

A board of education or other legally constituted local school authority having administrative control and direction of public elementary or secondary schools in a city, county, township, school district, or political subdivision in a state, or any other public educational agency having administrative control and direction of a career and technical program.  This term includes state correctional education agencies.

Location Domain

This PIMS Domain has one type of template which serves several uses. The Location Fact Template is submitted to support data involving truancy, expulsions, and suspensions, School Choice and SES.


National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)

The primary Federal entity for collecting and analyzing data related to education.

Notice of Recommended Educational Placement (NOREP)

A special education form completed by a local education agency which describes a student’s recommended placement.  This document can be used to support data elements in the Special Education Domain such as Type of Support and Service Provider.


Pennsylvania Alternate System of Assessment (PASA)

A statewide alternate assessment designed for students with the most significant cognitive disabilities. Specifically, it is intended for those unable to participate meaningfully in the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment even with accommodations. 

Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE)

The state agency responsible for overseeing the academic preparation of children and adults by providing a thorough and efficient system of education.

Pennsylvania Information Management System (PIMS)

The statewide, longitudinal data system that manages, analyzes, disaggregates, and uses individual student data for each student served by Pennsylvania’s Pre-K through grade 12 public education system.

Pennsylvania Secure Identification (PAsecureID)

PAsecureID is a unique, permanent, anonymous state-wide student ID assigned to all students upon their first entry into the Commonwealth public school system.  A single, unique PAsecureID remains with an individual student throughout their educational career within Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA)

Annual standards-based, criterion-referenced assessment used to measure a student's attainment of the academic standards while also determining the degree to which school programs enable students to attain proficiency of the standards. Every Pennsylvania student in grades 3 through 8 is assessed in reading and math. Every Pennsylvania student in grades 5 and 8 is assessed in writing. Every Pennsylvania student in grades 4 and 8 is assessed in science. 

Pennsylvania Technology Inventory Survey (PATI Survey)

The information technology survey that each intermediate unit and Local Education Agency (LEA) must submit to PIMS.

Pennsylvania Value Added Assessment System (PVAAS)

A statistical analysis of Pennsylvania state assessment data, and provides Pennsylvania LEAs with growth data to add to achievement data. It provides educators with information to ensure they are meeting the academic needs of groups of students, as well as individual students. 

PIMS Domains

The organizational structure of the PIMS manual. PIMS Domains include: Child Accounting, Course and Grades, Discipline, District, Enrollment, Groups and Programs, Location, Interscholastic Athletic Opportunities, Survey, Staff, Student, Career and Technical Education, Special Education.

Private Residential Rehabilitation Institution (PRRI)

A facility, other than one operated by a public agency, which as of December 31, 1977, offers educational services as a part of a total rehabilitative program provided for legally committed juveniles.

Professional Personnel Identification Number (PPID)

A 7-digit individual secure unique identifier for all certified educators.  A secure alternative to the use of Social Security Numbers for reporting and retrieving Act 48 continuing professional education credits and hours.


Required, Optional, or Conditionally Required (R/O/CR)

This field information is provided for each data field within each template required in PIMS collections.  Fields within PIMS can either be required, conditionally required, or optional.


School Number

A unique identifier assigned by the Commonwealth to a school entity which does not always equate to a physical structure.  A school may be housed in one or more buildings, or two or more schools may also be in one building.

School Performance Profile (SPP)

A school-level score reflecting weighted indicators of student achievement, academic growth, progress toward closing the achievement gap, and other factors including attendance, graduation/promotion rates, rigorous course offerings, and PSAT/Plan participation.

Snapshot Date

The given period of time in which records are preserved as submitted. Used by PDE to get a view of LEA data as of a specific date.

Source File

The original data file used by a local education agency to upload in the eScholar Data Manager (eDM).  This file typically comes from a student information system used by a local education agency.

Special Education Domain

As a part of the Special Education Data Collection, all Local Education Agencies (LEA) must submit the Student Snapshot and Special Education Snapshot through this domain. The fields submitted in the Student Snapshot templates that are used in Special Education reporting can be found in Volume 1 of the PIMS Manual.

Staff Domain

Local Education Agencies (LEA) are required to submit the Staff template, Staff Snapshot template, Staff Assignment template, and Staff Development Fact template through this domain. This domain applies to school districts, intermediate units, career and technology centers, charter schools, and state juvenile correctional institutions.

State-wide Longitudinal Data System (SLDS)

These systems are intended to enhance the ability of states to efficiently and accurately manage, analyze, and use education data, including individual student records. The SLDSs should help states, districts, schools, educators, and other stakeholders to make data-informed decisions to improve student learning and outcomes; as well as to facilitate research to increase student achievement and close achievement gaps.

Student Domain

Local Education Agencies (LEA) are required to submit the Student and Student Snapshot templates in this domain. This domain applies to school districts, intermediate units, career and technology centers, charter schools, state juvenile correctional institutions, private residential rehabilitation institutions, and approved private schools.

Student Information System (SIS)

A software application, typically web-based, developed for and used by local education agencies to manage and export locally used and state-mandated student data.


A special population of student data categories including but not limited to: Economically Disadvantaged, English Language Learner, migrant, and special education.

Survey Domain

Local Education Agencies (LEA) are required to submit the Survey Participant Response template in this domain. Intermediate units, career and technology centers, school districts, and charter schools apply to this domain.


Teacher Information Management System (TIMS)

Pennsylvania’s online application and credential repository available to teachers, administrators, and college students entering a Commonwealth educational profession.  The application provides the ability to submit a multitude of items that include but are not limited to, an application for a credential, changes or updates to educator information, an application for an emergency permit, verification of work experience as identified in PIMS or by applicant. 

Template Dependencies

Prerequisite files that must be loaded into eScholar prior to loading the given template file. A dependency list for each template can be found in the PIMS Manual, Volume 1, within the Templates section. 

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