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NYSSIS Resources and Information

Overview || Resources: NYSSIS User Guide | Data Flow | Timeline
Level 1/LEA Support | NYSSIS FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Overview: NYSSIS (NYS Student Identification System) provides unique statewide identification numbers to all students participating in the NYS P-12 (Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade) Student Information Repository System, or SIRS, also called the statewide (Level 2) student data warehouse. Regional (Level 1) data center operators send NYSSIS ID request files to the NYSSIS application in the form of data extracts containing local (Level 0) student records, which have been submitted by participating LEAs (Local Education Agencies, such as Public school districts, Charter schools and Nonpublic schools).

Typically, student records are processed by LEAs through a local "Level 0 application" (or equivalent system), and these records are in turn staged in the LEA's host site's (their regional Level 1 data center's) data warehouse. The Level 1 host then does comparisons against its Student tables to compare the local ID, date of birth, and first and last names to determine if the student already has an assigned NYSSIS ID elsewhere in that L1's region. If a match cannot be made, a "request file" extract is submitted to the NYSSIS application (along with additional data elements to improve matching candidacy outcomes), which will determine whether the student should be matched to an existing record from another L1 Center within NYS, or if it should be assigned a new NYSSIS ID. Details of this process are outlined in the NYSSIS User Guide (see Resources area below).

The NYSSIS application currently employs a complex series of “near-matching” algorithms performed by ChoiceMaker software, which compares any of the 24 possible data elements. Overall, name and date of birth are most critical, and are weighted higher than any other elements. Near-matching uses dozens of sophisticated statistical and other variably weighted analyses. These include natural language processing such as SoundEx, Jaro-Winkler, and Edit Distance; custom clues to detect naming conventions used within many languages; geolocation clues such as zip code and street address proximity; and many others.

NYSSIS IDs are maintained in a transactional data table, storing all submitted changes to demographic data elements associated with each ID, as well as associations to related records when IDs are changed (merged, deprecated, etc.). This allows NYSSIS to better maintain data accuracy and improve matching quality over time. This master table is leveraged by Level 2 systems for data synchronization across Level 1 Centers and within the Level 0 Historical application (used to make corrections to prior year records when applicable).

NYSSIS IDs are now also used outside the NYS P-12 system to provide longitudinal linkages for disaggregated research on students who have gone on from the P-12 system to higher education at SUNY and CUNY campuses. NYSSIS IDs may also make future longitudinal education research across “P-20” groups possible (agencies outside the Education Department), such as collaborations on workforce development initiatives and so on.

More high-level information on NYSSIS and the levels of the statewide student data warehouse, including systems and data flow diagrams, can be found in the SIRS Manual (found on the IRS Web SIRS resources page; see link at top of that page).

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NYSSIS Resources

User Guide | Data Flow Diagram | Timeline | LEA/Level 1 Support
NYSSIS FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

NYSSIS User GuidePDF PDF (1.45GB)

NYSSIS Data Flow:

  • For data flow specific to the interactions between the NYSSIS application and the L1 regional warehouse, and between NYSSIS and the statewide Level 2 production warehouse, as well as when and how NYSSIS IDs may be updated (unlinking or merging IDs, deleting IDs) and propagated back to both L1 and L2 as well as to the Level 0 Historical applications, see the NYSSIS User Guide (above).
  • For general data flow through the SIRS data warehouse, see the SIRS Manual, found on the IRS Web SIRS resources page; link is at the top of the SIRS page.)

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Timeline:

NYSSIS is generally available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. This allows Level 1 Centers to schedule automated processing if desired, and allows all NYSSIS Users to access the Student Search and other features at their convenience.

There are times, however, when NYSSIS may be down temporarily for maintenance (usually to implement small changes to the user interface or add new components to the application). In these cases the NYSSIS technical team will post a "down for maintenance" message on the NYSSIS main landing page, and will, whenever possible, notify the NYSSIS Users listserv in advance.

If a NYSSIS outage is anticipated well in advance, such notices will be posted to the NYSED IRS Calendar, and any accompanying details will be noted in the Descriptions area of the Event.

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Troubleshooting and Support for NYSSIS users :

LEAs should follow all guidance below.

1. LEA NYSSIS users should first review the NYSSIS user guide.

2. LEA NYSSIS users should next confirm that their official records (entry/exit enrollment codes, dates, etc.), as stored in their own student management system (SMS), matches what their RIC or other regional Level 1 data hosting site has recorded (through the Level 0 application, if applicable, or through any reporting service provided to them by their Level 1 provider).

3. Each LEA has a School Data Coordinator or District Data Coordinator who is responsible for overseeing data flow from the local LEA to the regional Level 1 Host Center. Each Level 1 Host Center manages and maintains the connection between students' Local IDs at the LEA level and the state-provided NYSSIS IDs. LEA NYSSIS users working with NYSSIS IDs must work with their own School or District Data Coordinator. LEA School and District Data Coordinators must work with the NYSSIS Point of Contact (PoC) at the Level 1 Host Center.

4. Any discrepancies between official records and data recorded in the local SMS (or at Level 1) should be considered for correction following accepted State or local protocols if required for such changes. In many cases, it may be necessary for Data Coordinators to communicate with another LEA's Data Coordinator if records conflict. In other cases, Data Coordinators may need a Level 1 NYSSIS PoC to assist in resolving students' statewide NYSSIS IDs discrepancies (see NYSSIS user guide for more information).

All local issues should be submitted to the LEA's Data Coordinator. If an issue need to be escalated to a Level 1 NYSSIS PoC, the Data Coordinator should submit issues to Level 1 (RIC or Big 5 City District) according to the Level 1/Big 5's established troubleshooting procedures. (An overview of NYSED's guidelines may be found in the Guidance for RIC/Big 5 UIAS PoCs, Step 4, below.) LEA NYSSIS users should not report NYSSIS issues directly to NYSED, as NYSED does not directly handle LEA data movement.

If an LEA Data Coordinator's request for assistance cannot be resolved by the Level 1 RIC or Big 5 CSD support team, Level 1 RIC/Big 5 NYSSIS PoCs may submit documented inquiries to NYSED to NYSED datasupport using the HELP link in the NYSSIS application.

Recommended troubleshooting documentation includes capturing and editing screenshots, documenting a click-path (steps/clicks taken to get from point A to point Z), and data that should (or should NOT) be included might include:

  • Student NYSSIS and Local IDs (mandatory),
  • BEDS code(s) of enrollment location(s) (mandatory),
  • Date of relevant report run (if issue is manifesting in such a environment) and/or last known data refresh if referencing local, Level 0 or Level 1 data movement,
  • Screenshots, ensuring that Personally Identifiable Information (PII) are excluded or permanently masked,
  • Click-path, including descriptions of links and/or URLs as appropriate,
  • Type of PC/Mac, O/S and/or browser software if applicable.

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NYSSIS FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions):

In development.

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For questions about NYSSIS application user interface, reports or data, or to submit feedback or suggestions about UIAS reports, please contact your Level 1 Big 5 Cities or Regional Information Center (RIC) UIAS Point of Contact (see Support Contacts.)

To contact us regarding general information such as interpretation of NYSED policy or data definitions/guidelines, including comments, questions or suggestions for the NYSSIS application or for this page, please click the HELP button located in the bottom right corner of the screen.

Last Updated: December 9, 2016