Headlines for Release 34
- Transport - even more features to empower schools to manage their student transport and dismissal.
- Attendance Registers Improvements, including PDF downloads.
- Navigation and Search Improvements.
1. TRANSPORT MODULE UPDATES
Following the successful launch of our Transport Module in Release 33, we have added even more features and functionality.
- Change Requests
- Allow parents to apply online for transport 'exceptions' for a particular day, saving admin time. School administrators can approve or reject requests and also make changes on behalf of a parent if necessary.
- Route Stop Times
- You can now add time between stops on a route to automatically generate approximate route stop times, to show on Attendance Registers and Parent Diary/Calendar.
- Preference Reports
- Generate an easy output of all students' transport method including route and times each day.
- Bus Route Capacity
- It is now possible to enter the capacity of a transport timetable route. SchoolsBuddy will automatically calculate available spaces to help administrators see when additional transport is required and to avoid over-filling a bus.
- Other, smaller updates
- Automatic event generation will take place when transport student preferences are set at the start of the year, and will also update when mid-term changes are made. Events created each night will be for the next 21 days. Also, when students are signed up to after school activities, their preference will be updated if there is a 'Late' transport option.
- A default time slot can be set for each direction so when transport events are generated, students are assigned to their preferred slot by default. Where there is a change to this default either from a Change Request or after-school event booking, they will still show in their default list but marked as 'Not Expected'.
- There is a new role within SchoolsBuddy specifically for Bus Monitors that can be assigned to an External User (staff). These Bus Monitors, along with any other member of staff, can be nominated to take attendance registers for a particular route ensuring details are only viewed by the nominated monitor.
- A second new role is for Transport Alerts. A nominated person can be given the Transport Alerts role to ensure they receive all communications for transport issues such as change requests and absentee alerts.
2. ATTENDANCE REGISTERS UPDATES
The attendance registers in SchoolsBuddy have been updated to provide a better user experience, particularly for mobile devices.
- The 'quick view' is available on desktop and mobile and shows clear information including coloured attendance mark buttons. Having marked one student, the next student's attendance status options will appear.
- The 'mark all' option can be used for both Present and Absent marks and will only apply to those without an attendance mark already.
- The 'notify' button for absentees will now show how many students this includes and will be visible on both views.
- We have added the ability to download and print selected registers together as a single PDF or CSV. The PDF download offers the optional inclusion of extra information such as next/previous events or attendance notes. This will enable staff to have access to these registers if they are offline at the time of the event.
The Exit Mode tab (if switched on for an organisation) will show any student with a Present or Late attendance mark, to help when dismissing students at the end of the activity or event.
Visible in all views, a student search field will react to the text entered returning any student with the typed letters in their first or last name.
3. NAVIGATION & SEARCH IMPROVEMENTS
Search filters have been upgraded across various locations to include a new 'Event Type' filter, a more comprehensive date range search and the option for parents to filter their diary/calendar by student if they have more than one child at the school.
- Look out for the new cog setting for types of events to include or hide e.g. PTC/Parents Evenings
- Within a preference-based sign up, the Student Selections search will now return results as you type, where the first and last name are included in the text.
- There are new status counts which can also be used as filters.
- A new handy 'back to' option within a container will take the user back to the page of the same-type containers.
If you need help with any of the new features from Release 34 please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Headlines for Release 33
- NEW! Transport Module - this is a major new feature to organise student transport options including bus lists. This module can also enable enhanced student dismissal management (without transport element).
- Admin access to use Parent Wallet or Vouchers for recording payments and making manual bookings.
- New search panel options within Attendance Registers including improvements to the Next and Previous Events detail.
1. TRANSPORT MODULE
This major new feature has its own tab on the main menu bar.
- To set up this module the staff member must have the Transport Advanced Admin role or be an Organisation Super Admin (next release there will be Transport Admin role for new day-to-day features e.g. Change Requests).
- An organisation Admin will have visibility of this tab but need the required role to access it.
- There is a dedicated ‘Config Settings’ panel where you can set up and administer different Transport Methods, Operating Days, Stops, Time Slots, Routes and Timetables.
- Students can be assigned to Timetables en masse.
- Different stops on the assigned route can be set for each student per day.
- Parents can choose transport preferences for their child/ren when booking an activity.
- Event registers are generated for each transport journey.
For more detailed information, please read our related support docs:
If you are interested in adding the transport module to your account or would like to discuss the module in more detail please contact email@example.com, or email your usual SchoolsBuddy contact directly.
2. PARENT BALANCE
We have added the ability for Admin users (and Fees Admin users) to access and use parents’ wallet and voucher balances within SchoolsBuddy to record a payment against a fee, or to make a manual booking on behalf of the parent. This will be useful for staff that need to switch bookings on the parent’s behalf.
Please read our related support document for more information.
3. ATTENDANCE REGISTERS
We have added a number of new search panel options within the Attendance Register screen including:
- Filter options by ‘Year’
- Sort options for ‘Next/Previous Events’
- ‘Next/Previous Events’ This replaces ‘Detailed View’
- This now includes attendance mark, attendance notes, end time (previously only displayed start time), and ‘year’ end events displayed as the ‘Event Name’
For more information read our related support document