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The School-Level Master File

The School-Level Master File (SCHMA) is a dataset developed by the Research Alliance for New York City Schools at New York University. To create the file, we compiled publicly available data from the New York City Department of Education (DOE) and the U.S. Department of Education. The result is a consistent, accessible document that can be used to investigate characteristics of individual New York City schools or groups of schools and how they have changed over time.

The data in the SCHMA file dates back to the 1995-1996 school year, with information about the following characteristics:

  • Enrollment and demographic information
  • Attendance rates
  • Number of classes, class sizes
  • Progress report information (when available)
  • Test scores for grades 3-8
  • High school graduation rates
  • School expenditures data
  • Identifiers that link school records over time and that link New York City data to other public sources such as those available from the New York State Education Department, the Census Bureau, and the U.S. Department of Education

The SCHMA is accompanied by a companion data set that can be merged onto the SCHMA.  The companion file includes student achievement data (test scores for grades 3-8 and high school outcomes), broken down by race and gender. 

The SCHMA file is updated as new information becomes available. A complete yearly update is done only after all school-level data have been released by the DOE – generally about a year after the end of a given school year. We last updated the SCHMA file in January 2017, with information from the 2015-2016 school year. The data is in "long format" or school-year-level format, which means it currently provides data about each school for each year it was open between 1996 and 2016.

If you would like to request a copy of the SCHMA, please read the usage agreement and fill out the request form. You will then receive an email with a link to the SCHMA, a documentation codebook, and a copy of the usage agreement.

Please add to your e-mail “Safe Senders” list to make sure SCHMA file is not sent to your spam folder. 

Note: the SCHMA is a CSV file (26.2 MB), which can be can be read in to your preferred data analysis software or opened using Excel. 

Privacy and the SCHMA

The SCHMA includes only publicly available data and is aggregated to the school level. There is no way to retrieve information about any individual from this file. For more information about how the Research Alliance protects privacy in our use and storage of data, please visit our FAQ section

Please read our usage agreement and fill out this form to receive the School-Level Master File.