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Patch Release – June 3, 2020

June 3, 2020

Unfortunately, QuickSchools has recently been targeted for Phone Fraud and the 809 phone scam. This is where a malicious user attempts to use the Voice Messaging feature to call toll numbers which charge exorbitant rates for calls. As a result, we’ve had to disable the “Buy Credit” feature for Paid Messaging in this patch release:

New schools will have to go through a verification process, before they can be allowed to purchase credit in order to make paid phone calls. If you see this message and would like to purchase credit, please contact our support team to have the feature reinstated.

Read more…

Patch Release – June 2, 2020

June 2, 2020

QuickSchools has just released some minor improvements to the Online Forms apps, to help schools with processing new students for the new school year. Improvements are described below:

Download Forms

As users are filling up the forms within your form packet, there is now a new “Download Forms” button, that allows users to download completed forms before submission:

Users can select whether to download all forms, or just specific forms from the packet:

Read more…

Developing New Features

May 27, 2020

Having served hundreds of schools over the past decade, and as we continue to serve schools worldwide, we get many requests to improve the QuickSchools product and service, from a variety of different markets and business needs. So how do we decide what gets worked on and what doesn’t?

Prioritizing based on Impact, Effort and Demand

First off, we have to make sure everything works, and works well, for all of our customers. So typically as we receive feedback from customers, we’ll work on features that have the biggest impact on our customers. This would typically include bug fixes, but also includes improvements to performance, security and usability. If something affects more of our customers, that’s what we’ll work on first.

The next thing we look at is the level of effort. Obviously, easy fixes tend to be worked on first, while harder and more involved solutions will take a longer time to address. We want to make sure any fixes we introduce do not create other issues in its wake. So complicated improvements will take longer as well.

Read more…

Temporary School Closures

May 26, 2020

The COVID-19 (or CoronaVirus) pandemic is adversely affecting many schools across the world. Schools are forced to adapt by implementing online learning solutions, to allow teaching to take place even while students stay at home.

At QuickSchools, we will be releasing new features to help schools adapt to this changing environment. In addition to improved integration to Google Classroom, we are also developing our own online learning tools, like Homework Submissions, and Online Grading. We hope to release these new features over the coming months.

But for schools who are unable to implement an online learning solution, and need to close their doors temporarily, if you plan to re-open in the coming months, please reach out to our support team about keeping your data active. Accounts that are cancelled or suspended are automatically removed from our servers in line with privacy laws. So if you cancel your account with us, and decide to come back a few months down the road, you will need to start a new account from scratch.

We understand that nothing is certain in these strange times. But we also have to be compliant with privacy laws like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Data that is removed intentionally, in compliance with GDPR, is removed permanently and cannot be recovered.

We hope that schools can remain open despite these challenges. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help deal with these challenges.

New Release – May 23, 2020

May 23, 2020

Here are the latest improvements in QuickSchools:

Online Learning Improvements

  • WYSIWYG for Homework
  • WYSIWYG for Lesson Plans
  • Remember selected Subject when moving between modules
  • Display Homework module on Student and Parent Portal

Featured Improvements

  • Option to copy gradebook formula on semester activation
  • Online Form Importer Bug Fixes and Improvements

General Bug Fixes / Improvements

  • Improve support for changing the Bell Schedule in Master Scheduler
  • New Framework for sending Emails from Summary Reports (App)
  • New Report Creator Filter for incoming days
  • Report Creator improvement for Communications Enabled
  • Improve server performance during cross-domain functions
  • General Security Improvements
  • Bug Fix when connecting to Stripe
  • Bug Fix when connecting to Google Classroom

Online Learning Improvements

With more and more schools relying on QuickSchools to deliver online learning, we’re introducing a few new features in the coming months, the first of which is the new WYSIWYG toolbar when creating Homework and Lesson Plans:

You’ll also find that when navigating between modules like Homework, Gradebook and Subject-based Lesson Plans, the system will remember the selected subject:

Read more…

Print Report Cards In Order

May 21, 2020

For those who aren’t aware, the Report Cards “Print (In Order)” function that was removed some time ago has been reinstated in QuickSchools with the March 23 release:

To use this function, be sure to select an appropriate number of report cards (using the checkboxes to the left), before clicking on the “Print (In Order)” option. Some updates to this function:

Read more…

Mass Messaging

May 15, 2020

Looking for a quick and easy way to announce or send messages to all your students and parents about an upcoming event or activity? Well, look no further than the Messaging module in QuickSchools.

Send Emails via the Messaging Module

There are systems out there that focus purely on messaging capabilities. However, with these standalone systems, you have to manage your recipients separately, through a complicated process of exporting and importing contact info between systems. With QuickSchools, everything is integrated. That means that you can send out messages easily by grade level, by homeroom, or by subject/course. You can even create your own recipient lists for things like the parent council, school-related clubs or committees, and so on. And contact information is always kept current by the student information system (SIS).

Read more…

Online Forms for Districts / Groups

May 14, 2020

If you have a group-school or district setup in QuickSchools, you can actually configure your Online Forms to be shared across multiple sites. This means that you’d only need to set up a single form packet to process applications for ALL schools in the group/district. Applications can then be routed to the appropriate school as needed.

To set up this feature, you’ll first need to enable the Advanced Settings in the Online Forms app from the App Store:

Enabled Advanced Settings for the Online Forms App

Once that’s enabled, clicking “Configure Form Packet” will include the “Advanced Settings” at the bottom of the page.

Configure Form Packets

To share the form packet with other sites in your group/district, simply add any additional schools to the list under the “Advanced Settings” section:

Read more…

Module-Based Email Templates

May 11, 2020

In the recent QuickSchools release on May 6, 2020, we introduced some new improvements to our Email Templating module. This article aims to highlight a few key features of this capability.

The Email Templates feature is currently available in several modules, namely:

When accessing a record in these modules, there is an “Email” button that allows you to send emails that utilize fields from the module. Here’s an example from the Admissions module:

Send Emails from the Admissions module

You then have the option of creating an ad hoc email, use a template, or view the history for this record:

Options when using the Email Template capability

Each module has its own set of fields that you can use. Just click on the “Insert Field” link to view list of fields:

Read more…

New Release – May 6, 2020

May 6, 2020

Here are the latest improvements in QuickSchools:

Google Classroom

  • Cosmetic Layout Improvements
  • Disable mapping of Grading Category
  • Support using Grading Category in QuickSchools Gradebook
  • Synchronize Assignments based on Assignment Date

Online Payments Improvements on Allocation Functionality

  • Ability to manually fix Allocation for Credit Card Fees
  • Fix Decimal Formatting

Featured Improvements

  • Dedicated screen for student to access Homework Assignments (Beta)
  • General Improvements and Bug Fixes to Bulk Email from Template

General Bug Fixes / Improvements

  • Gradebook ToolTip temporarily removed for performance tuning
  • WYSIWYG Editor is now enabled by default for Email Messaging
  • Expand Support for Auto-Enrollment by Homeroom
  • Support for Section Attendance on the Student Attendance tab
  • Support personalized Announcements
  • Improve display of multiple Announcements
  • Improve Auto-Logoff Feature on Browser Refresh
  • Improve Attendance Calendar Support for deleted Attendance Codes
  • Improve Reporting on Student and Parents with Communications Enabled
  • Improve support when multiple schools initiate Email Messages at the same time
  • Fix Sorting of Formulas in Gradebook Templates
  • Fix installation error for Online Forms App
  • Expand API Resources for Mobile Apps

Google Classroom

We’ve had a lot of traction with our integration to Google Classroom, as more and more schools adopt the free Google Classroom system for online learning. In this latest iteration, we’ve introduced a new setting that will only synchronize assignments in Google Classroom based on the assignment date, as compared to the dates within the currently active academic term:

By default, the synchronization pulls ALL assignments from Google Classroom into QuickSchools. But if you have a single Google Classroom course for the whole year, and you have multiple academic terms in QuickSchools, this setting will help separate the Gradebook data being pulled.

Another reminder is that the Google Classroom API currently does not support Final Grade and Mark Categories. So these will need to be set up in QuickSchools. After pulling the grades from Google Classroom, teachers can freely change the grading categories for each column, and create formulas and final grade calculations. These will not be overwritten by the synchronization process. 

We’ll write more about the Google Classroom capability in a separate article to come.