JSON   RDF   ISO19115/ISO19139 XML

Student retention rates at NSW government schools (2014-2023)

The full-time apparent retention rate (ARR) measures the proportion of a cohort of full-time students that moves from one grade to the next, based on an expected rate of progression of one grade per year. It does not track individual students through their final years of secondary schooling.

Data Notes:

  • The ARR is the ratio of the total number of full-time school students in a designated year (e.g. Year 12 in 2020) divided by the total number of full-time students in a previous year (e.g. Year 7 in 2015). This would be the Year 7 to 12 apparent retention rate in 2020.

  • From 2020, students in mainstream support classes (previously excluded from this data) are reported by their underlying grade of enrolment. As a result, data from 2020 onwards is not directly comparable to previous years. A separate column in the Excel files has been provided to show the 2020 retention rates with both previous and revised counting rules. 2021 retention rates use the revised counting rules.

  • Support students at Schools for specific purposes (SSPs) do not have a designated grade and therefore are not counted in the calculation of ARRs. Support students in mainstream schools have been included in the calculations from 2020 (see above).

  • Reporting on ARRs based on small numbers of students can lead to unreliable ARR estimates. The tables combine ABS SA4 areas to ensure the underlying number of students is sufficiently large to generate reliable estimates.

  • Only full-time students are counted in the calculation of full-time apparent retention. Part-time students are excluded.

  • Students enrolled in distance education classes are included with their appropriate grade levels. Sydney-Inner includes enrolments from Sydney Distance Education High School.

  • ARRs can exceed 100 per cent due to factors including student migration from interstate and overseas and between school sectors.

  • Norfolk Island Central School is not included in the Apparent Retention Rate factsheet, but from 2018 to 2021 was included under NSW Government data in the ABS Schools Australia publication. This can lead to a slight difference in reported figures between Schools Australia and this dataset.

  • Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students are identified based on responses to the school enrolment form. This information may change throughout an individual’s schooling.

  • Reporting by non-binary gender is not possible due to system limitations.

Data Source:

Data and Resources


Additional Info

Field Value
Title Student retention rates at NSW government schools (2014-2023)
Type Dataset
Language eng
Licence Creative Commons Attribution
Data Status active
Landing Page https://data.nsw.gov.au/data/dataset/c9fd51b3-506d-4707-b607-0b1853654ce6
Date Published 2017-11-14
Date Updated 2024-06-26
Contact Point
NSW Department of Education
Data Services <data.services@det.nsw.edu.au>
Temporal Coverage 2014-01-01 - 2023-12-31
Geospatial Coverage NSW81093: New South Wales
Jurisdiction New South Wales
Data Portal Data.NSW
Publisher/Agency NSW Department of Education