Frequently Asked Questions from Administrators, Principals, and Directors regarding the Wisconsin Student Number Locator System (WSLS)

Enrollment

Granting Access

WSLS and ISES Maintenance

WSLS, ISES, & Other DPI Applications

Privacy

  • Is guidance available for parents?
  • How does the WSN help protect student privacy?
    1. Who is responsible for submitting and updating student records in the Wisconsin Student Number Locator System (WSLS)?
      All Wisconsin school districts (ch.119 and ch.120, stats.), nondistrict charter schools (s. 118.40(2r), stats.), and schools governed by the Department of Corrections (DOC) and the Department of Health Services (DHS) are responsible for submitting and updating records for students enrolled. Requirements that apply to school districts also apply to nondistrict charter schools, but are limited for DOC and DHS schools. Data for students served by County Children with Disabilities Education Boards schools, the Wisconsin Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired, and the Wisconsin School for the Deaf are submitted by the districts sending students to these schools. Top

    2. Which students should be assigned to a district for WSLS purposes?
      A student is assigned to your district if the student receives his/her primary PK-12 educational services either (1) directly from district employees or (2) from a third party (not another Wisconsin district) under the direct supervision of your district. Services provided by district employees or third parties might be received in a school building, library, hospital, county corrections, college, or any other location. Services include but are not limited to IEP services and may or may not be provided in standard full school day increments. PK includes a wide range of services such as Title I preschool, Headstart, special education birth through age 2 programs and more.
      Many districts/schools arrange and supervise educational services for students through agreements or contracts with third-parties. Third parties might include technical colleges, community-based organizations, nonprofit-nonsectarian agencies, universities, school to work program providers, cooperative educational service agencies, out-of-state school districts, private schools, residential care centers, Wisconsin Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Wisconsin School for the Deaf, County Children with Disabilities Education Board schools, etc.

    3. How is the WSLS kept current to reflect student movements between schools and districts?
      Your district is required to update and/or add enrollment records to the WSLS data base to document all student movements between schools and districts. If the student exits a school then the student's record at that school should be updated to include an exit date. If a student enrolls at a new school, then a new school record should be added for that student. Top

    4. What is meant by the phrase "school term"?
      School term is defined by s. 115.001, Stats, to mean "the time commencing with the first school day and ending with the last school day that the schools of a school district are in operation for attendance of pupils in a school year, other than for the operation of summer classes." The beginning date of the school term is usually on or after September 1. [Top

    5. In which schools should districts submit students who receive services from multiple schools simultaneously?
      Submit students as assigned to one and only one school at any given point in time. If a student receives services from multiple schools simultaneously, then report the student as assigned to the school that directly supervises the primary educational services for this student. In determining the scope of the services supervised by a school, consider services provided by school employees and, when applicable, third parties pursuant to district contracts or agreements. Educational programs that have no students enrolled are not considered schools. See school definition at http://lbstat.dpi.wi.gov/lbstat_defini Top

    6. In which schools should districts submit students receiving services from third parties and/or at locations outside of school buildings or students with disabilities covered by a service plan recieving services from a private school?
      For most students, submit students as assigned to the school that is responsible for supervising his/her primary educational services regardless of where the services are provided. All students "enrolled" are expected to receive services under the supervision of a school within the district whether these services are provided by school employees or by a third party that is directly supervised by the school. Usually the school with this responsibility is the school that would serve the student if the student physically attended classes in a school building in your district. Sometimes a separate school is assigned responsibility for supervising educational services provided in this manner. Certain larger districts have created a school specifically for this purpose of supervising the education of students not served within school buildings.
      For the small number of http://lbstat.dpi.wi.gov/lbstat_defini. Contact dpistats@dpi.wi.gov for more information. Top

    7. Which district submits data for students who receive services in multiple districts simultaneously?
      Submit students as assigned to one and only one district at any given point in time. If a student receives services from multiple districts simultaneously, then submit the student as enrolled in the district that most directly supervises the primary educational services for this student. Examples are provided below.
      Example 1: If pursuant to District A IEP a student with disabilities is receiving his/her primary educational services from District B, then District B submits data for that student.
      Example 2: If pursuant to District A IEP a student with disabilities is served by the Wisconsin School for the Deaf and if the School for the Deaf has an agreement with District B to provide some services to the student, then District A would submit data for this student.
      Example 3: If a student attends District A under part-time open enrollment, but the student's primary educational services are provided by District B, then District B would submit data for the student. (Note: If a student attends District A under a full-time open enrollment program, then District A would submit data for the student.) Top

    8. What enrollment date should be used for students who have enrolled and withdrawn multiple times during the school term?
      We need a separate enrollment date for each continuous period of enrollment at any given school. The school enrollment date should not be before a student is actually present to receive services in a school.
      Enrollment status would be considered "continuous" if it is not interrupted by enrollment status in another school. Enrollment is not interrupted simply by truancy, suspensions, breaks in school sessions, or breaks during the operation of summer classes. Expulsions do not interrupt enrollment status either, if the student continues to receive his/her primary educational services through the school.
      For Top

    9. What is meant by the phrase "school session"?
      School session is defined by s. 115.001, Stats, to mean "the time during a school term that the schools of a school district are operated for the attendance of pupils. Top

    10. When can districts add students to or change existing student data in the WSLS?
      Any time. Student data in the WSLS data base should be kept as current as possible. Every time a student enrolls in a new school or district, a new enrollment record should be added to WSLS data base. Every time a student exits a school or district, his or her legal name changes, or errors are found, changes should be made to existing WSN records. These records can be added and changes made at any time by authorized district/school personnel through on-line data entry. Records can be added by uploading new csv or xml files. Some smaller districts or schools may choose to add or change records on-line on an occasional, as needed basis. Larger districts and schools may do batch file processing daily or weekly.
      We recommend district work in the WSLS on a weekly basis to review Exit Requests and add or update student information.Top

    11. Why is it important to keep the WSLS complete and current?
      If WSLS records are complete and accurate, then the automated matching process will be more efficient and identifying the transferring student in the list of possible matches will be easier for districts and schools. Schools and districts are strongly encouraged to provide as much optional data about as many students as possible and to update data as necessary to facilitate the matching process. If this is done, then schools can better account for students who are highly mobile, more readily exchange student records, and respond more quickly to student needs.
      If the data base is not current, or if the data are inaccurate or incomplete, then the system will be less efficient and students are more likely to have more than one WSN. Timely submission of exit dates are especially important to facilitate WSN system processing of movements to new schools. Students with more than one WSN will be associated with more than one enrollment record, increasing the likelihood that students who have transferred to a new school will be reported as dropouts by a previous school, and student records from previous schools will not be accessible to the new school. Top

    12. What is the relationship between the WSLS and the ISES?
      To meet ESEA report card requirements, we are in the process of developing a WSLS and an Individual Student Enrollment System (ISES).
      The purpose of WSLS is to assign permanent, unique, and unduplicated numbers to students. WSNs will be used in lieu of names to collect data in the fall of each year through the Individual Student Enrollment System (ISES). Gender, race, and school enrollment dates needed for fall ISES-reporting are included in the WSLS data base.
      The purpose of the ISES is (1) to report disaggregated dropout, graduation, attendance, and English proficiency acquisition data by school as required to produce ESEA-mandated reports and (2) to collect a limited amount of other data as necessary related collections including WSAS Pre-ID IDEA reporting.
      For more information about ISES, see http://lbstat.dpi.wi.gov/lbstat_isesprepar. For more information about the WSLS, see http://lbstat.dpi.wi.gov/lbstat_wsnprepare. Top

    13. What is the relationship between the WSN/ISES enrollment count and the PI 1563 membership count?
      Both ISES and PI 1563 are used to produce fall student counts of students. Both include data about students served within school buildings, outside of school buildings, by district employees, and by third parties. Differences in the purposes of these two collections affect which students count for which districts and whether or how much each student counts.
      Total statewide counts under ISES and membership will not match. Certain students are outside the age range for state aid eligibility so don't count for membership. Enrollments in part-day or part-week preschool and kindergarten programs or in a high school course or two are prorated for membership purposes. All students count for ISES if they receive their primary PK-12 educational services either directly from a district or through a third party agreement/contract regardless of the student's age or the number of hours the program operates. So many of the students enrolled in part-day or part-week preschool/kindergarten programs would count in the ISES headcount (not prorated) and many of the students taking only a high school course or two would not count in ISES at all. More Top

    14. Can we have more than one WSLS administrator? No, there may be only one WSLS / ISES Administrator per district and non-district charter school. The WSLS / ISES Administrator can use the Top

    Submit questions, comments and suggestions about the WSLS or ISES to the 24x7 DPI Online Helpdesk Application or call 800-507-5744. Submit questions regarding the ESEA Report Card Requirements to dpieseadata@dpi.wi.gov.