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Teachers and Staff (E7)

May 24, 2019

By default, QuickSchools will designate all users at your school as “Teachers”. This is just our way of keeping things simple and consistent. All teachers (and by extension, all users) will have the same access.

Over the years, we’ve seen strong demand to have a separate role of users for “Staff”. And for a while now, we’ve provided this feature for schools that request it under Private Beta. Users who are designated as Staff have limited access. Since Staff users don’t teach, they don’t get access to Attendance, Gradebook and Report Cards by default. But you can give Staff users access to specific modules, based on their role in your school. For example, you can designate your Bookkeeper as a Staff User with access to the Fee Tracking module. Your Bookkeeper will not have access to Grading.

After much testing and refinement, we’re happy to announce that the Staff module is now available to all our schools with the Sprint E7 release. To turn it on, simply configure the “Teachers” module under “Settings” > “Turn Features On / Off”:

Turn on Staff Module

Turn on Staff Module

Once enabled, you’ll see a new “Staff” menu under the main “Teachers” menu:

New Staff menu under Teachers

New Staff menu under Teachers

When editing a record, you can designate the user as “Teacher” or “Staff” or both: Read more…

Producing Progress Reports

May 17, 2019

In QuickSchools you can produce Progress Reports via the Gradebook or the Report Card modules. Here we elaborate on the available options:

Definitions: Progress Reports vs. Report Cards

Progress Reports are a snapshot of how the student is progressing within the school year. Progress Reports can be generated as frequently as you want. You can do it once per term, or one a month, or even weekly.

In contrast, Report Cards are generated only ONCE per term, and is a culminating assessment for that academic term. We have a robust Report Cards module, where you can choose from a variety of different templates, and configure elements to include. Since Report Cards are intended to be comprehensive, they can be set up to display grades, comments, narratives and even standards.

Producing Progress Reports

There are essentially 2 ways to produce Progress Reports. The simplest way is to print the Gradebook for each student. The PDF generated from the Gradebook contains all the assessments as well as comments. And for many schools, this is sufficient for parent teacher conferences and mid-term reporting. Parents can even print this off from the Parent Portal as frequently as they want.

Progress Report from Gradebook

The second way is to use the Report Card module, which allows you to add more detail to the document (like comments, etc). By using the Report Cards module, you can leverage the flexibility of the module, while still providing a snapshot of the calculated grades from the Gradebook (simply by locking the session). Progress Reports produced in this way can be published, printed and emailed parents as a PDF document.

Templates for Progress Reports

When configuring Progress Reports within the Report Cards module, it’s important to select a specific type of template, in particular the Single-Term Template.

In QuickSchools we essentially have 2 types of report card templates: Read more…

The Case for the Report Creator

May 15, 2019

The Report Creator is a reporting module that is included with our Athena Plan. For all other plans, you can install it from our App Store:

Report Creator App

Report Creator App

Since its initial release back in 2015, we’ve made many improvements to the module. We thought we’d highlight some of the key benefits for having this module enabled in your QuickSchools account:

Data Exploration

Create your own reports, sort columns, create filters, including charts and graphs.

https://blog.quickschools.com/2015/02/11/create-your-own-reports/

Send Email from Report

Create a report for any scenario, and send out email alerts based on the contents of your report. For example, create a report for all students who were absent today, and send an email to the parents of all those students.

https://blog.quickschools.com/2018/05/21/send-email-from-the-report-creator/

View/Filter Students by Report

Use reports to filter students on the main Students listing. For example, create a report on all your Special Ed students, and then peruse all Special Ed students in the Students listing, based on that report. Read more…

New Release: Sprint E7

May 13, 2019

Here’s a list of the latest improvements in QuickSchools:

  • Mobile App Framework (Coming Soon)
  • Odysseyware (Beta) Framework Improvements
  • Admissions Improvements (see below)
    • Inquiries now has Status view (similar to Applications)
    • Renamed “Show All” to “Show All Active
  • Change Color Scheme (see below)
  • Support for Staff (see below)
    • New setting to turn on “Staff” module
    • Events can now be shared with Staff
  • Miscellaneous Bug Fixes / Improvements
    • Report Creator Date Filter for “is this week” (see below)
    • Subject Importer supports column for Semester Name
    • Parent Messaging Caller ID requires Credit
    • Submitted Online Forms bug for Student Portal
    • Master Scheduler “Copy Settings” button bug
    • Graduation Requirements bug on Student Tab

Admissions Improvements

In a previous Sprint E5, we introduced a new “Applications by Status” feature. We’ve now done the same for Inquiries:

Admission Inquiries by Status

Admission Inquiries by Status

Remember that you can lock the selected status by clicking on the Lock icon below the Search Box on the right.

We also took the liberty of renaming the “Show All” status to “Show All Active”, to make it clearer: Read more…

Taking Attendance in the Future

May 10, 2019

As you probably know, when accessing the Attendance Roster in QuickSchools, you cannot select a future date. So if you know that a student is going to be absent for whatever reason, how would you notate that in the system?

The solution is the Custom Attendance Codes App. This app was first released way back in 2014, so it’s quite stable and a useful feature. More info here:

https://blog.quickschools.com/2014/02/05/custom-attendance-codes/

But just to summarize, with the Custom Attendance Codes app, you can define attendance codes for specific situations, like “Vacation”, or “Medical Leave”, or “Late Start”. And for each code you can assign a corresponding attendance value like “Present” or “Absent” or “Absent with Excuse”:

Custom Attendance Codes

Once you have predefined all your custom attendance codes, you can use the “Daily Status” menu, to enter attendance for student for any date range (particularly for the future):

Daily Status with Attendance Codes

The module does not actually take attendance in the future. But what it does is presets the attendance values in the Attendance Roster when the teacher takes attendance. You can also optionally display the Attendance Code and/or the Daily Status Remark, so that the teacher knows what is going on with the student: Read more…

New Release: Sprint E6

April 29, 2019

Here’s a list of the latest improvements in QuickSchools:

  • Mobile App Framework (Coming Soon)
    • Homework Data Retrieval via API
    • Schedule Data Retrieval via API
    • Miscellaneous API Improvements
  • Graduation Requirements now supports decimals
  • Gradebook Importer now supports Comments
  • Transcripts Importer handles empty values better.
  • Disable Siblings (for adult education / vocational schools)
    • “Parents” tab can also be relabeled (Beta)
  • Miscellaneous Bug Fixes / Improvements
    • “Session Expired” error for Online Forms when using public URL

We’ve had a recent increase in interest from adult education and vocational schools. Since these schools typically deal directly with students as customers, we now have the option of re-labelling the “Parents/Siblings” tab to something more relevant, like “Contacts”. You can also remove the “Siblings” dropdown via the “Student Portal” configuration:

Disable Siblings from Student Record

With the “Disable Tracking of Siblings” enabled, the “Parents/Siblings” tab will no longer show the siblings dropdown: Read more…

We will be in Chicago

April 16, 2019

We will be in Chicago this coming Easter Weekend (April 19 – 21, 2019), exhibiting QuickSchools at the ISNA Education Forum at the Westin O’hare Hotel in Rosemont.

QS flashights

If you’re there, be sure to stop by. And let us know if you’d like to attend any other conferences near your area.