Teacher Caseloads in Orchestra

In the Orchestra (Master Scheduler for QuickSchools), you can set up a Caseload limit for teachers in Step 1, under “Configure Teachers”:

Set Teacher Caseload when you “Configure Teachers” in Step 1

The system calculates the current caseload for the teacher by adding the total number of students for all sections, and then compares it against the Caseload limit. Here’s an example from the “Teacher Case Load (Step 5)Summary Report that shows how the Caseload is calculated and compared against the Caseload limit:

Use the “Teacher Case Load (Step 5)” Summary Report to view current Caseload and Caseload limits.

For convenience, you can also see the current caseload for a teacher in Step 5, when mousing over a an available section for a student’s course requests:

View the Caseload for a teacher in Step 5 by mousing over the section

The Teacher Caseload is an optional field. Leaving it blank will simply remove the limit, but the system will still calculate and display the current caseload.

Reaching the Caseload Limits

When sections cannot be loaded because of Caseload limits, you’ll see the following Rejections (we’ll discuss Rejection Analysis in full in a separate article):

Rejection Analysis shows the total sections rejected due to Caseload Full

You can view a breakdown of courses with rejections using the “” Summary Report:

View Courses with “Caseload Full” Rejections via the “STEP 5: Reject Analysis by Course” Summary Report

You can always remove/increase the teacher caseload, but this likely detracts from the intent of this feature. Here we discuss some options for handling the “Caseload Full” rejection.

Use “Randomize Load” in Step 5

In Step 5, you can configure the “Scheduling Algorithm” in Step 5 to either “Distribute Load” or “Randomize Load”. 

Use this “Randomize Load” to get different results when Loading Step 5

You can then clear and load the schedule again, and get a different result. This function works best with one of the other suggestions listed below. 

Start with a lower caseload

Some schools have opted to start with a lower caseload. This will force students to be distributed more evenly between teachers (instead of just between sections).

NOTE: The “Distribute Load” algorithm distributes students between available sections. This means that teachers with more sections will naturally end up with more students (thus a higher caseload). So starting with a lower caseload forces teachers to reach their minimum caseload, after which you can increase the caseload as necessary..

Add / move sections by other teachers

When a rejection is marked with “Caseload Full”, this means that the period is available for the student. So one way to take advantage of the free period is to add/move a section from another teacher (whose caseload limit has not been reached) to this free period, and then Load Step 5 again.

Moving Students to another Teacher

If the teacher has sections for multiple courses, but only one course is getting the “Caseload Full” rejection, then you can attempt to move students from the other course to another teacher. This will free up the teacher caseload, allowing the teacher to take more students for the course that has rejections.

Example Teacher “Agustin” with Caseload Full Rejections for Course VG10

In the earlier example with Agustin (See image above), if the VG10 course is getting “Caseload Full”, you can reassign his students from JRN50 to another teacher. This will reduce Agustin’s current caseload, allowing the system to assign more students to his VG10 class.

This process of moving students has to be done manually in Step 5. But we’re working on some tools to simplify this process. In the meantime, please feel free to reach out to our support team for assistance. We may be able to help move the students manually for you.

I think that’s it for today’s article. The Orchestra Master Scheduler is a complex tool that caters to a variety of scenarios. And we try hard to remove the complexities that you don’t need or don’t apply to you. Please reach out to us for assistance, and we’ll work to making the process easier for you.

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