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Starting next Monday - Best Practice in MIS Webinar Week!

W/C 22nd April is our next Best Practice in MIS Webinar Week!  All webinars are FREE and you can sign up for as many sessions as you wish through the hyperlinks in the schedule which you can find here or through the full schedule line up here.

Changes to Attendance Codes from 01/08/2024

From 1st August 2024 there are changes to attendance codes with regard to Absences in school.  A letter has been sent to all schools from the DfE regarding this (you can view a copy of the letter and the attachments here).

To summarise:

  • This only applies to schools in England. Independent Schools and schools elsewhere are not affected. 
  • H, J and Y codes will become inactive (NB: Further clarification on the H code is being sought from the DfE, as this is currently the only suitable code in some circumstances).
  • C will have additional sub codes C1 & C2. 
  • K is a new Absence code.
  • Q is a new Absence code.
  • Y will now become Y1 – Y6 Absence codes with Y7 a ‘catch all’ for anything NOT covered by Y1-Y6. However it is mandatory that an explanation is added when using Y7, as the DfE feel that Y1-Y6 cover pretty much all eventualities. 
  • Codes B and K will also need an explanation adding when they are used, and this is statutory, not optional.

Please be aware that for any SIMS schools who still use OMRs, they will not work with the new Attendance codes.  Please see the SIMS section of the newsletter for next steps.

Details:

New Attendance Codes become effective 1st August 2024 ready for the 2024/25 and future academic years.

Existing Codes:

1 changes to attendance codes

New Codes for the 2024-25 Academic Year:

2 new codes for the 2024 25 academic year

3 new codes for the 2024 25 academic year

List of session attendance codes where a statutory explanation is required for 2024/25 onwards:

4 list of session attendance codes where a statutory explanation is required

For the updated version of Working Together to Improve School Attendance, please click on this link: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/63049617e90e0729e63d3953/Working_together_to_improve_school_attendance.pdf

For how these changes are being dealt with by your MIS, please see the relevant section.

School Summer Census 2024 – 16th May 2024

  • Attendance collected 01/01/2024 – 31/03/2024
  • Exclusions 01/08/2023 to 31/03/2024
  • Alternative Provision Placements 18/01/2024 to 16/05/2024
  • National Tutoring Programme 01/08/2023 to 16/05/2024
  • Free School Meal Eilgibility 19/01/2024 – 16/05/2024 (for On Roll pupils only)

We would like to also draw your attention to the following changes in the Summer Census:

Applicable to all schools with nursery provision.

  • ‘30 hour code’ is being replaced with ‘Eligibility code’ in the Early Years Table
  • Expanded Hours records up to 15 hours for 2 year olds with working parents.
  • 2 year old basis for funding will be collected in each census return from Summer 2024.
  • EYPP will also be collected in each census from Summer 2023
  • Disability Access Fund has now been extended to 2 year olds in the Summer Census

Detailed guidance on changes from the DfE to this return can be found via https://www.gov.uk/guidance/complete-the-school-census/data-items-2023-to-2024

Exclusions Enhancement

  • Exclusion types must now be different

We will be running training courses on the census please see below to book your place:

https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/online-training/

The Multiplication Tables Check (MTC)

The multiplication tables check (MTC) is statutory for all year 4 pupils registered at state-funded maintained schools, special schools or academies (including free schools) in England.

Schools can access the MTC service to prepare for the check via DfE Sign-in from Monday 8th April 2024.

Schools must administer the MTC to all eligible year 4 pupils between Monday 3rd June and Friday 14th June 2024.

Schools can use the following week, Monday 17th June to Friday 21st June, to administer the check to any pupils who were absent during the first 2 weeks or in case of any delays to the administration of the check due to technical difficulties.

Schools must provide a reason for any pupils who are not able to participate in the check within the MTC service.

Schools must generate a school password and individual pupil PIN within the MTC service before pupils are able to sign in to access the check using the pupil application.

There is a leaflet for parents available via this link: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/6543c1ef9e05fd0014be7c64/2024_Information_for_parents_Multiplication_tables_check_PDFA_v1.1.pdf

Information and further guidance available here:  https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/multiplication-tables-check

Annual Increments

April is usually a time for NJC/Support Staff to have their annual increment awards. This is something that should be updated within your MIS as soon as you receive the information, to ensure they are up to date for the SWC (School Workforce Census) and any reporting you may do.

For guidance on how to update your payscales within your specific MIS, please contact your support team:

School ICT customers:

Tel: 0345 222 6802 Option 1

Email: helpdesk@schoolicts.co.uk

Portal: https://my.schoolicts.co.uk/

turn IT on customers:

Tel: 01865 597620 Option 2

Email:  mis.support@turniton.co.uk

Portal: https://portal.turniton.co.uk

End of KS1 Assessments

The end of KS1 national curriculum assessments are now non-statutory. The reception baseline assessment (RBA) will replace the end of KS1 assessments as the baseline for cohort level primary progress measures. The RBA became statutory in the academic year 2021 to 2022, and the reception cohort from that year reach the end of KS1 in the current academic year.

The STA continues to develop and supply guidance and materials for optional end of KS1 tests from the academic year 2023 to 2024. These will include optional tests of English reading, English grammar, punctuation and spelling and mathematics and the Government encourages schools to administer the optional tests and teacher assessments, but there is no requirement to use these, or report results to parents or local authorities.

More information available via this link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/2024-optional-key-stage-1-tests-guidance/2024-optional-key-stage-1-tests-guidance

Customer Information

School ICT customers:

Contact: 0345 222 6802 Option 1, helpdesk@schoolicts.co.uk

Portal: https://my.schoolicts.co.uk/

turn IT on customers:

Contact: 01865 597620 Option 2, mis.support@turniton.co.uk

Portal: https://portal.turniton.co.uk

Our customer portals allow you to: –

  • Log and track tickets
  • Watch webinars
  • Search Knowledge base for information
  • Latest news
  • Remote support

Changing your Internet Provider?

Don’t forget to let us know!  Some areas depend on URLs being whitelisted, and if you change your Internet Provider, we need to add the new details.

As always, you can call, email or log a ticket with us in the following ways:

School ICT customers:

Contact: 0345 222 6802 Option 1, helpdesk@schoolicts.co.uk

Portal: https://my.schoolicts.co.uk/

turn IT on customers:

Contact: 01865 597620 Option 2, mis.support@turniton.co.uk

Portal: https://portal.turniton.co.uk

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IMPORTANT SIMS (SNG) Upgrade Tech Requirements

Part of the Spring release includes updating SIMS Service Manager (SSM), and the release of DEX Patch 28258.

To ensure all schools are Next Gen ready ESS have announced that the following must be applied no later than Thursday 25th April 2024.

Please ensure the following has been applied or updated:

– SIMS Spring Release 2024 (7.216)

– DEX Patch 28258

– SIMS Services Manager (SSM) 1.4.8 and set to Auto Run/Auto update

Webview2 Installed and running (for servers 2016 and above this should be running as expected) For servers less than 2016 a weblink needs to be run which takes webview to an earlier version * Please contact your helpdesk for this weblink if required

– Part of the process all requires schools to run a Dex config wizard which can be accessed via Tools/Setups/Dex Configuration

Changes to Attendance Codes 01/08/2024

N.b.- only applies to schools in England.  Independent Schools and schools elsewhere not affected

 This will be included in the summer upgrade (7.218): –

  • H, J and Y codes will become inactive
  • C will have additional C1 & C2 
  • K is a new Absence code
  • Q is a new Absence code
  • Codes B, K and Y7 will need an explanation adding when they are used
  • OMR will not operate with the new codes, so any schools still using this, MUST move to SIMS in the Classroom or Next Gen. Please contact us regarding this
  • Schools should avoid entering any codes into the 2024/25 Academic Year until after the Summer Upgrade
  • Where schools have existing Lesson codes that are linked to codes B, Y, J and H these need reviewing BEFORE the Summer Upgrade
  • Where schools do their own upgrades, the upgrade must be applied before 31/07/2024. If it is applied after this date, schools will have to re-code any of the ‘old’ attendance codes that have been used, otherwise they will encounter large amounts of errors when running Census.

Details:

New Attendance Codes become effective 1st August 2024 ready for the 2024/25 and future academic years:

1 attendance code changes

Within Tools  | Setups | Attendance Setup  | Codes | Maintain Codes, a new column has been added to show which codes are Active/Inactive and clicking on the header will allow the table to be sorted on the chosen column:

2 attendance code changes maintain codes

From 31/07/24 the H, J and Y codes will become inactive:

* H code has been queried, as this is the code used to authorise holidays for families where a parent is terminally ill or they have parent(s) in the armed forces – ESS will advise after they have spoken to the DfE.

J will be replaced by J1

Y will be replaced by Y1-Y7

K is a new code (Alternative Provision provided by the LA)

Q is a new code (Unable to attend – lack of LA access)

(Where schools have previously set up a K or a Q code for Lesson use, these will now show as !K or !Q):

3 lesson codes historical data

The C Code still exists in its own right, but has additional C1 & C2 subcodes now.

Lesson Codes:

4 lesson codes historical data review of existing lesson codes

5 lesson codes historical data review of existing lesson codes

If there are any schools with the @, F, Covid 7, 8, 9 or [ or ] :

6 attendance code changes

Where B, K & Y7 are used, a statutory explanation must be added.  These will also show a black marker triangle in the top left of the Attendance Mark (similar to the red triangle in the top right when a comment is added):

7 attendance code changes

Y Codes

Y will be replaced by:

Code Y1: Unable to attend due to transport normally provided not being available:

The pupil is unable to attend because the school is not within walking distance of their home and the transport to and from the school that is normally provided for the pupil by the school or local authority is not available.

(Walking distance in relation to a child under the age of 8, means 2 miles, and for a child of 8 or above, means 3 miles. In each case measured by the nearest available route)

Code Y2: Unable to attend due to widespread disruption to travel

The pupil is unable to attend the school because of widespread disruption to travel caused by a local, national, or international emergency.

Code Y3: Unable to attend due to part of the school premises being closed

Part of the school premises is unavoidably out of use and the pupil is one of those that the school considers cannot practicably be accommodated in those part of the premises that remain in use.

Code Y4: Unable to attend due to the whole school site being unexpectedly closed

Where a school was planned to be open for a session, but the school is closed unexpectedly (e.g. due to adverse weather), the attendance register is not taken as usual because there is no school session. Instead, every pupil listed in the admission register at the time must be marked with code Y4 to record the fact that the school is closed.

This code may not be used for any planned closure such as weekends or holidays.

 

Code Y5: Unable to attend as pupil is in criminal justice detention

The pupil is unable to attend the school because they are:

  • in police detention,
  • remanded to youth detention, awaiting trial or sentencing, or
  • detained under a sentence of detention.

If a pupil is remanded to local authority accommodation, they should attend school as normal where possible, and where it is not possible any absence should be recorded using the appropriate code. A pupil’s absence should be recorded under code Y7 (Unable to attend because of any other unavoidable cause) if they are unable to attend because they are serving a community based (i.e. non-detained) part of a sentence of detention, referral order, or youth rehabilitation order that requires them to be absent during the school day. Schools are expected to communicate with the pupil’s Youth Offending Team worker while the pupil is in custody and remains on the school roll to discuss the pupil’s educational needs, progress and return to the school upon their release where appropriate. Education is a key part of effective resettlement, therefore it is important that schools maintain contact with the Youth Offending Team throughout the sentence to support the child’s resettlement where appropriate.

Code Y6: Unable to attend in accordance with public health guidance or law

The pupil’s travel to or attendance at the school would be:

  • contrary to any guidance relating to the incidence or transmission of infection or disease published by the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care (or the equivalent in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland), or
  • prohibited by any legislation relating to the incidence or transmission of infection or

Code Y7: Unable to attend because of any other unavoidable cause

An unavoidable cause, that is not covered by one of the other ‘unable to attend’ codes detailed above, is preventing the pupil from attending the school. This code should be used only where something in the nature of an emergency has prevented the pupil from attending the session in question. The unavoidable cause must be something that affects the pupil, not the parent. The fact that a parent has done all they can to secure the attendance of the pupil at school does not, in itself, mean the pupil has been prevented by unavoidable cause. Schools must also record the nature of the unavoidable cause (and this is statutory). Schools can NOT leave this box blank:

8 code y7 unable to attend because of any other unavoidable cause

In real terms, the DfE don’t expect Y7 to be used, as they feel that Y1 – Y6 cover pretty much every eventuality.

Attendance Reporting

From what we have seen, the reports within SIMS have all been brought into line with the new codes, e.g.:

9 display marks

Entering codes in advance, e.g. Enter a Code over a Date Range:

10 enter a code over date range

Entering a Weekly Pattern:

11 enter a weekly pattern

(NB: From 01/08/2024 the B code will need a comment adding whenever it is used)

Entering Exceptional Circumstances:

For Codes Y1 – Y6 the usual ‘Description’ Text box will be available to add the reason for the closure.

For Code Y7, both the ‘Description’ and a box for ‘Statutory Explanation’ will be required:

12 enter a weekly pattern

13 enter a weekly pattern

Both of these are included in the print output:

14 exceptional circumstances

Codes being made inactive:

15 codes being made inactive

New Codes:

16 new codes

These codes require an explanation when you use them:

17 these codes require an explanation when you use them

Details:

18 details

Other things to note:

19 other things to note

FMS Preliminary Closedown

Just a quick reminder for the Centrally Maintained schools that you can’t run your preliminary closedown until you have received and reconciled your Month 12 reports/files.

If you’re unsure about this please log a call with your support team:

School ICT customers:

turn IT on customers:

Summer Census 2024

For the first time, information on Early Years will be collected in this Census and with this in mind:

  • ‘30 Hour Code’ becomes ‘Eligibility Code’ from the Summer term in the Early years Table
  • ‘Expanded Hours’ column has been added to the Early Years grid for 2-year-olds
  • Early Years Detail Report updated with Eligibility Code and Expanded Hours
  • 2-Year-old Basis for Funding has been added to the Early Years grid
  • New detail report for 2-year-old basis for funding

(see below for further information)

Exclusions Enhancement

  • Exclusion types must now be different

All guidance for completing the return has been uploaded on our website links below and also on the turn IT on Customer Portal  https://portal.turniton.co.uk/

Primary & Nursery: – https://my.schoolicts.co.uk/portal/kb?id=607

Secondary: – https://my.schoolicts.co.uk/portal/kb?id=609

Validation Query 1881Q

We have been made aware of a problem with Validation Query 1881Q.  When this is applied to School Census Summer 2024 it is checking for attendance in 2023 (31/03/2023) when it should be checking for attendance in 2024 (31/03/2024). This means that it will incorrectly trigger for pupils who joined the school for academic year 2023/24, e.g. all pupils in year 7 in a secondary school and Reception in a Primary.

Late changes to the DfE specification

Having checked through the DfE’s late changes to its specification for School Census 2023/24 ESS have determine that changes will be needed for the following two areas:

  1. EYPP (Early Years Pupil Premium) Receipt

Until the most recent version of the DfE’s specifications for School Census 2023/24, the move from once-a-year collection of EYPP Receipt in the Spring Census to collection in all three termly censuses was to commence with School Census Autumn 2024. The late changes to the DfE specification brings this forward to commence with School Census Summer 2024.

Moreover, School Census Summer 2024 becomes the first school census to collect EYPP Receipt for 2 year old’s, i.e. inclusion of pupils who were two years of age on the 31/03/2024.

As well as the impact on the Early Years panel of the census, we will have to provide an EYPPR detail report.

  1. DAF (Disability Access Fund) indicator

Until the most recent version of the DfE’s specification for School Census 2023/24, the extension of DAF to include 2-year old’s in the three school censuses of the academic year was to commence with School Census Autumn 2024. The late changes to the DfE specification brings this forward to commence with School Census Summer 2024, i.e. take account of pupils who were two years of age on the 31/03/2024.

As well as the impact on the Early Years panel of the census application, we will have to revise the Early Years detail report and the functionality provided via menu route Tools | Statutory Returns Tools | Update Early Years.

All the changes to SIMS stemming from the DfE’s very late change to its specifications will be provided via CWPsp (Consolidated Workstation Patch Spring Release) 2.

We will advise schools when this patch becomes available.

Pupil Premium Download Fix

The import was failing with the message ‘File does not have required columns’. This was because the DfE CSV file for the coming financial year contains a column headed ‘Sex’ when files for previous financial years headed the column as ‘gender’.

This is fixed by patch:  SIMS Spring 2024 – Consolidated Workstation Patch 1 – Pupil Premium File Import Fix

This patch has now been released to all schools, and where we do the upgrades, it has been applied.

Annual Increments

April is usually a time for NJC/Support Staff to have their annual increment awards. This is something that should be updated within your MIS as soon as you receive them to ensure that they are up to date for the SWC (School Workforce Census).

We have a webinar that goes through the process here.

DID YOU KNOW…?  You can update increments in bulk, rather than going into each staff record and each contract?  We have a Helpsheet that goes through the process of updating the payscales in bulk

NB: If you link SIMS and FMS, you will need to ensure these have been updated in order for your salary projections to be correct.

Pay Awards and Hourly Rates

Pay Awards and hourly rates can no longer be set up as a service term.  This is very, very rarely used by schools now, as rates of pay are usually calculated out into an annual salary figure anyway, but for any schools who do still use this, new items are no longer permitted.   Where staff are paid hourly, this must be converted to an annual salary.

Exams – Withdrawals and Changes of Tier

In April you can normally withdraw student entries and make tier changes and receive a credit note from exam boards. For deadlines, please check with the relevant exam board – main ones below:

AQA Pearson/Edexcel OCR WJEC/Eduqas

To action a withdrawal in SIMS, the easiest way is to go to the candidate record then tab 2: Entries & Forecast, highlight the qualification then click on the pencil and change the entry to No Entry.

Rather than using the minus sign which would delete the entry altogether, using No Entry ensures that there is a record that the student was originally enrolled for the qualification.

If you need to make tier changes (for example Maths Foundation to Maths Higher), please carry out the above to withdraw from a tier then click on the plus sign to add the new tier from the basedata.

You can also make these changes via the marksheets you created when you made the original entries.

Once you have carried out these processes, you will need to go to Focus/Submissions and click on Add to create an amendment file for any exam board for which you have made changes.

Please not that any changes made AFTER components have been seated will not automatically change the seating. You will need to remove the student from the seating and, in the case of tier changes, add to the new tier components.

Exams Organiser training course

Examinations Organiser supports all aspects of managing external examinations. This course covers reviewing the setup of the software, importing and structuring basedata, creating and submitting files for entries and coursework marks, managing and seating candidates.

Our Distance Learning SIMS Examination Organiser course can be found here:

https://learning.schoolicts.co.uk/p/sims-domestic-examinations

Or book ahead for our SIMS Managing Results day courses on the 10th and 11th July:

SIMS Managing Results Day

SIMS Managing Results Day

 

SIMS Next Gen

Further to our previous update regarding ESS’s newly developed SIMS Software named Next Gen we have included here a summary of which modules are already available along with some screenshots to help familiarise you with the user interface:

Statutory and Lesson Attendance

Teachers can take attendance registers anywhere, on any device, at any time. It’s quick and efficient and ensures pupil safety.

20 sims next gen

My Markbook

Make monitoring student progress easy with a single tool to record the outcomes of tests, observations, evaluations, or skill competencies in one location.

Fire Register

Ensure all students are evacuated safely in the event of a fire using our new online evacuation register.

Staff Profile

All the information you need on staff members in one place. Quick access to contact details as well as key work information like working patterns, roles, and additional responsibilities.

21 staff profile

Pupil Profile

The central hub for viewing and editing pupil information. Staff get quick and easy access to essential contact details, Pupil Premium status, Free School Meal eligibility, and much more.

22 pupil profile

Custom Groups

With its user-friendly interface and easy search and filter options, Custom Groups allows data managers, school administrators, and teachers to create, bulk edit, and organise groups quickly and effectively.

Exclusions and Suspensions

Easy-to-use interface for recording suspensions and exclusions. Step-by-step instructions ensure accurate data entry, providing key dates and information to streamline the process.

23 exclusions and suspensions

Staff Timetables Calendar

An easy-to-use calendar tool that displays staff timetables and cover lessons in one place. Stay organised and bring clarity to your lessons with our new intuitive colour-coded labels.

24 staff timetables calendar

SIMS Group Analytics

Comprehensive reporting and analytics tools and consulting services tailored for MATs and school groups using SIMS. It provides a comprehensive overview of group or trust performance so leaders and administrators can identify trends, benchmark performance, and develop and monitor targeted improvement strategies to enhance overall educational performance.

There are new features regularly being added, for more details on these features, please visit the Next Gen Resource Hub

If you would like to see Next Gen in action you can find some videos here or please contact the helpdesk to arrange a demo.

Patch to Allow Import of Pupil Premium Download file from GIAP

There has been a problem importing the first of the DfE’s Pupil Premium CSV files from GIAP (Get Information About Pupils) for Financial Year 2024/25 (England).  The import was failing with the message ‘File does not have required columns’. This was due to the file having a column headed ‘Sex’ when files for previous financial years headed the same column as ‘gender’.

SIMS Spring 2024 – Consolidated Workstation Patch 1 – Pupil Premium File Import Fix has been created to fix this issue.  This patch has been released to all schools via SOLUS.

Where we do your upgrades, this should run automatically and for schools where the upgrades, etc. are run by the school, the patch is available in your SOLUS.

Pre-Admissions

For those schools who use Pre-Admission groups, you now have the option of bulk updating the records of the pupils within them!  This is a recent addition and allows data such as EAL, Ethnicity, First Language, etc. To be updated in advance of the pupils starting with you.

  1. Go to Routines | Admissions | Bulk Update Admissions.
  2. In the Bulk Update Applicant screen, the Group Type should be set to ‘Intake Group’. Now select a Group:

25 pre admissions

3. The Application Status can be used to Filter further if required:

26 pre admissions2

4. Now choose the Data Item that you want to update and click on Search:

27 pre admissions3

5. This will now populate your screen for you to complete the items. You can right-click on the column header to Check or Uncheck All, and you can also alter the column widths if it’s an item where there are lots of options, e.g., First Language, ethnicity, etc.:

28 pre admissions4

6. Once your ticks are in, you can just click on Save:

29 pre admissions5

7. If you want to, you can now, click on the Browse button, change your data item and Search again for a different item.

Bulk deletion of linked documents on Student Records

30 bulk deletion of linked documents on student records

Creating the New Academic Year (2024-25)

In SIMS, setting up the new academic year and pre-admission groups can be done whenever schools are ready so you can start now if you like. The new year must be set up before the old year ends to avoid major, and potentially costly, issues (so don’t leave it until you come back after the Summer!!). SICTS do offer a service where we can do this for you. Please contact the relevant helpdesk for further information:

School ICT customers:

turn IT on customers:

FMS - Cost Centre/Ledger Code Links

Top Tip!!  Did you know that you can link Cost Centres and Ledger Codes within the Cost Centre Allocation Screen? This saves time as you don’t have come out of this screen to go to Tools | General Ledger Setup and create a new link within the C/Centre Ledger Links tab and then go back into Cost Centre Allocation to continue entering your budget.

Within the Cost Centre Allocation Screen (Budget Management | Cost Centre Allocation if you use the shortcuts, or Focus | Budget Management | Cost Centre Allocation if you use the menu routes). Go into the relevant Cost Centre and to add a new Ledger Code click on the spyglass on the right:

31 fms cost centre ledger code links

This will give you a window where you can select the new ledger code from the left-hand list, click on Choose to move it to the right, and then click on Update to save:

32 fms cost centre ledger code links2

This will take you back to your screen and your new Ledger Code will now be linked to your Cost Centre:

33 fms cost centre ledger code links3

FMS Year End/New Year

The change of Financial Year always brings a few queries and with this in mind, we’ve created a Helpsheet with some of the most common ones:

  • ‘Structures Need Updating’
  • Buttons Greyed Out When Adding a Purchase Order or Invoice
  • No Order Number Book When Trying to Add a Purchase Order
  • ‘Your Budget for this Cost Centre is 0.00. Saving this line would cause it to be exceeded by £X.XX’ Message when trying to save a line on a Purchase Order.

You can access this helpsheet via the customer portal:

April Nova T6 - Timetable Tips

March/April is really the time when the momentum starts to climb in preparing for next school year.

Some things to be thinking about this month:

Options

Completion of the process, counselling of students, confirmation of the timetable new option blocks.

SIMS Schools: –

Send Options Online student allocations to SIMS Academic Management. (The next academic year will need to have been created to do this.)

Advise students of allocations (You can send this electronically via Individual Report in the Assessment Manager suite & Intouch).

Timetable

Finalise curriculum audit.

Confirm the cycle – are there any changes?

Confirm the module structure – what do you want to teach, how do you want to teach it?

Prepare staffing deployment proformas & combing charts for Heads of Department/Curriculum Leads

SIMS/Nova:-

Create a new timetable file for the next academic year, best practice is to transfer curriculum.

Import Option block curriculum structures from SIMS into the model (options online)

Import Option blocks into the model (options 5)

Tidy base data in the new timetable file. (Staff/Rooms/Subject codes) (Update staffing loads)

Need training? Check out our Website for both remote and distance learning programmes:  https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/online-training/

Not sure of the process? Please get in touch with your support team:

School ICT customers:

Contact: 0345 222 6802 Option 1, helpdesk@schoolicts.co.uk

Portal: https://my.schoolicts.co.uk/

turn IT on customers:

Contact: 01865 597620 Option 2, mis.support@turniton.co.uk

Portal: https://portal.turniton.co.uk

Key Stage Returns

If you have had your SIMS upgrade to version 7.216, then the Key Stage Wizards are ready to import. For primaries, these will be required for your EYFS, Phonics, and SATs returns.

You can easily import them via Routines| Data In | Assessment | Import. It may take a second or two, but you should get an Import box pop up that looks like this:

34 key stage returns

When it does, just click on the ‘Yes’ and leave it to run.  It will take a few minutes, but this will import all of the marksheets, gradesets, etc. That are required for the returns. Once started, DO NOT CANCEL IT!!  Once finished, you can check the imported items if you like, in the window that will be on the screen, but you can also just click on Close:

35 key stage returns2

Cancel the Import Window that remains:

35 key stage returns3

If you now go to Tools | Performance | Assessment | Wizard Manager, your new EYFS, Phonics, KS, etc. Will be showing ready for your returns:

36 key stage returns4

If you don’t want the old ones to display, simply tick the ‘Complete’ box and click on Next and confirm that you want to make the changes when the pop-up appears:

37 key stage returns5

This will take you to the next page.  Now click the Back button:

38 kry stage return6

The filter will default to ‘All’.  Simply change this back to ‘Incomplete’:

39 key stage return7

Your list will now only display the current assessments:

40 key stage return8

This just keeps the list you’re working on more manageable.  All of the previous ones are still in SIMS.  To view them, just change the filter to ‘All’ or ‘Complete’.

The marksheets can be imported manually if you prefer. If you need any help with this, please call us or raise a ticket and we will be happy to help.

Dates for assessments are available here https://www.gov.uk/guidance/primary-assessments-future-dates#academic-year

Quick Letter Fix

We can confirm that a solution has been provided for Quick Letters users after the latest SIMS upgrade. A new template has been made available, which needs to be copied to your SIMS.Net folder for the system to function properly.

For more details and to access the template, please visit our Customer Portal at https://my.schoolicts.co.uk/portal/kb?id=814. Or alternatively, contact your support team:

School ICT customers:

turn IT on customers:

Individual Reports now includes a PDF Upload option!

In the Individual Report Details screen the Upload button has been updated to include a PDF Upload option.

41 individual reports now includes a pdf upload option

The PDF option has the same details fields as the Word option and will behave in the same way so that the Find Individual Report Details entries will automatically overwrite the date and user information when an update is made.

42 individual reports now includes a pdf upload option2

When you have selected the appropriate PDF from the Documents field click the OK button to open the Edit Note/Document field.

43 individual reports now includes a pdf upload option3

You can add notes to the Document Log, see when the PDF was Last Uploaded and use the View button to see the previously uploaded PDFs.

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Arbor Admin Access – School ICT and turn IT on

Arbor Admin Access – School ICT and turn IT on can now offer our schools additional support, at no extra cost and as part of your SLA with the MIS Support Partner Arbor Admin Access.

What benefit does this functionality bring to you?

With your permission School ICT / turn IT on can carry out Arbor Admin functionality for your school on your Arbor MIS. This would mean that we would be able to diagnose and resolve a selection of common issues and perform common data refreshes for example, refreshing course calendar entries, populating missing payment accounts and access audit logs.

This ability would negate the need to escalate these tasks to Arbor Support and result in quicker support resolutions. If you haven’t had the email and feel you should have, please call School ICT on 0845 222 6802 or email helpdesk@schoolicts.co.uk and for turn IT on customers call 01865 597620 (opt.2) or email  mis.support@turniton.co.uk

Latest Arbor Updates

 Latest Arbor Updates: –

  • Navigating around Arbor: Arbor has improved the navigation menus for these areas. These pages are now searchable, and the page title shows in your browser tab. There have also been improvements to the whole top menu navigation on the Group MIS to sort them alphabetically. ·
  • Programmes of study: Use the Enrol students from courses option to automatically enrol students enrolled in a course today into a Programme: Setting up Programmes

When withdrawing individual students from programmes, you now have the option to withdraw them from courses linked to the programme instance: Withdrawing students

When transferring individual students from programmes, you can also select a course to transfer them into: Ending a programme by transferring.

Arbor have removed the ability to transfer students from/to teaching groups from Programmes.

The Bulk Update Core Learning Aims page is now Bulk Update Programmes of Study. Take all the same bulk actions as within a programme in the Students tab, plus there’s the Courses and Programme Instances tabs for an overview.

You can also connect your Arbor data into your BI tool with Arbor’s BI Connector Version 2, with brand new datasets and templates: Arbor’s BI Connector

Arbor have also added 13 new datasets for our BI Connector Version 2, including Custom Groups, Emergency Alerts, Student Educational History, SEN Needs and Event Outcomes, Consents, Assessment Completion and School Events.

Full details of the updates above and all other Abor updates can be view in the: Arbor Change Log

Exams – Withdrawals and Changes of Tier

In April you can normally withdraw student entries and make tier changes and receive a credit note from exam boards. For deadlines, please check with the relevant exam board – main ones below:

AQA Pearson/Edexcel OCR WJEC/Eduqas

To action a withdrawal in Arbor, the easiest way is Students/Examinations/Entries/Entries by Student Group, change the filter to the correct group then withdraw students from the qualification using Bulk Action à Withdraw Candidates.

Please ensure you withdraw from the Award AND the Learning Unit.

If you need to make tier changes (for example Maths Foundation to Maths Higher), please carry out the above to withdraw from a tier then select the same student(s) and use Bulk Action à Enter Candidates to add to the new tier.

Once you have carried out these processes, you will need to go to Students/Examinations/EDI Exports/Entries, confirm any pending files, download and send to the boards via A2C.

If this withdrawal/change of tier is actioned after the exam has been seated, the student will automatically be removed from the room/seat.

DfE Statutory Assessment from 23/24 onwards

In line with DfE guidance, End of Key Stage 1 (KS1) Teacher Assessments are no longer required to be collected or reported. There are no changes in the DfE Assessment area in Arbor. If you won’t be administering KS1 assessments, do not set them up. All other assessments (KS2, Phonics, MTS and EYFSP) continue to be statutory and required.

Please read Arbor’s full guide Introduction to DfE statutory assessments in Arbor and key dates for detailed information on how to set up, record and return your school’s DfE Statutory Assessments. The guide also includes details of the key dates in the process:

  • 1st – 31st May: If running these assessments (they are optional), this is the testing period for KS1 assessments. There is no obligation to report these to your LA or the DfE.
  • 24th June: The threshold mark for the Phonics Screening Check will be available from the DfE. In Arbor, student outcomes will automatically appear on the marksheet based on the raw scores you’ve already put in, and you’ll be able to analyse your data.

The Multiplication Tables Check (MTC) results become available from the Primary Assessment Gateway. To import your results into Arbor:

Generate a CTF file from the Primary Assessment Gateway to your computer

Import the file – click here to find out how

See MTC results on the Analysis pages.

  • 28th June: This is the deadline to submit KS2 results on the Primary Assessment Gateway.
  • 9th July: The KS2 results become available from the Primary Assessment Gateway to import your results into Arbor.

Did You Know...?

  • You can now personalise your Arbor Homepage using the new Favourites functionality: With the new Favourites menu you can bookmark the pages you use most often to get to them quickly and easily every day. Plus, rename your favourited pages to make them more relevant: Custom Favourites on My Homepage

Add a page to Favourites: Any pages you favourite will show in your Favourites list only. There is no central page to edit all staff favourites.

To add a page to Favourites, navigate to the page you want to add. In the left-hand menu, click the star icon.

1 did you know

Click Add to Favourites to add the link to your homepage. 

You can only add the main page itself; any specific page filters or hashing cannot be saved as separate favourites. 

Begin, Build, Boost - Key areas of Arbor

Begin, Build, Boost! Is a series on the Arbor Help Centre that will take you on a journey through the key areas of Arbor that need setting up, all the way from an introduction on what they are, to how to get the most out of the features Arbor offers.

  • Begin – Everything you need to know before you get started with Arbor
  • Build – How to use this area of Arbor
  • Boost – Take your school to the next level and make the most of this area

These Begin, Build, Boost journeys are perfect for:

  • schools who have just finished moving to Arbor
  • schools who have been with us a while, but want to start using an area for the first time
  • users at schools who have been using Arbor can use the Begin and Boost sections, but your school will already have set up these modules

If you’re a new user but your school is already using these areas, why not check out our Introduction to Arbor guides for new users.

Getting Started

Click the links below to start your journey. Arbor have created Begin, Build, Boost guidance for these areas:

Free Webinars provided by Arbor:

Past webinars:

Upcoming webinars:

What happens to attendance for clubs when students are removed from sessions?

What happens to the attendance marks recorded for a club when participation is cancelled depends on the type of club.

Standard Clubs

For standard clubs, you can see attendance on the student profile, in Attendance > Marks (By Date) > Lesson by Lesson tab, but they don’t contribute towards Statutory/Roll Call Attendance.

2 what happens to attendance for clubs when students are removed from sessions

When you remove a student from a session by cancelling their membership, they will be removed from the session.

However, their attendance won’t be deleted. They are not counted as redundant marks, but they will still contribute towards club attendance figures.

3 what happens to attendance for clubs when students are removed from sessions 2

If you wish to delete the attendance, click into the date on the student’s profile, in in Attendance > Marks (By Date) > Lesson by Lesson tab. Click on the club.

4 what happens to attendance for clubs when students are removed from sessions 3

Click the X next to the attendance mark to delete it, then click Save Changes.

5 what happens to attendance for clubs when students are removed from sessions 4

Wraparound Care Clubs

For Wraparound Care clubs, you won’t see attendance marks on the student profile.

When you remove a student from a session, they will be removed from the session register and the list of students. Any attendance mark recorded for them will be deleted.

For example, a student is signed up to a club session, and attendance was taken.

6 what happens to attendance for clubs when students are removed from sessions 5

7 what happens to attendance for clubs when students are removed from sessions 6

They are then removed from the session, and their attendance for that session is deleted. It won’t appear as redundant marks or contribute towards club attendance figures.

View the article here.

Which communications show in the different Communication Logs?

  • Go to School > Communications > All School Communications. Here you can view the different logs from the left-hand menu:

8 which communications show in the different communication logs

  • You can also view Communication Logs on student, staff, and guardian profiles.

9 which communications show in the different communication logs 2

  • Public or Private?

Communications marked as Private can only be viewed from the All School Communications > All Comms log. If you need to change the setting for a communication, you can see how to do this here: Mark communications as Public or Private

  • What happens if the message was not sent by the school and is private?

If a communication was sent from a user and is marked as private, it can only be seen by the user that sent the communication in their Communication Log: Seeing the Communications I’ve sent

Read the complete article here

New School Year Set Up

10 new school year set up

  • For New School Year Setup and Year End guides click here.
  • For New School Year Setup videos click here
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Questions for Ofsted

Attendance

You’ll need to be able to provide up to date attendance figures. They may ask for both your whole school figures, as well as attendance figures for special cohorts and specific groups of students, such as:

Enrolment and Student Demographics

Ofsted may ask for details about the number of students on roll, as well as any students that have been taken off roll. The following reports can be found via Reporting > Reports > Students (blue tab).

  • On Roll By Date
  • Admissions and Leavers
  • Student Custom Report
  • School Summary
  • Special Cohorts
  • Behaviour and Conduct

Ofsted may ask to see records of specific types of behaviour and incidents, or a record of exclusions and suspensions. The following reports can be found via Reporting > Reports > Conduct (orange tab).

Please note:

Schools have the option to rename many of the conduct categories in the Admin > Config > Custom Relabelling area. If your school has renamed them, the names of your conduct reports may be different to the guidance. The icons however will still match.

  • Incident Report
  • Exclusions Report

Safeguarding

Ofsted will require access to safeguarding information. This may include looking at the Single Central Record (Central Register).

Central Register

Tracking Daily

Student Custom Report

1 student custom report

https://support.scholarpack.com/hc/en-gb/articles/6144271945245-How-to-build-a-Custom-Report

The custom report above is an extremely useful report for student data. It has a wide range of reporting options and is highly customisable, which is very useful if you’re looking to report on several aspects combined into one report. The link above goes through the details on building these.

Staff Custom Report

2 staff custom report

The staff custom reports are very useful too.

School Summer Census 2024 – 16th May 2024

  • Attendance collected 01/01/2024 – 31/03/2024
  • Exclusions 01/08/2023 to 31/03/2024
  • Alternative Provision Placements 18/01/2024 to 16/05/2024
  • National Tutoring Programme 01/08/2023 to 16/05/2024
  • Free School Meal Eilgibility 19/01/2024 – 16/05/2024 (for On Roll pupils only)

Detailed guidance can be found via this link: https://support.ScholarPack.com/hc/en-gb/categories/6079131370013-Census

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Exams – Withdrawals and Changes of Tier

In April you can normally withdraw student entries and make tier changes and receive a credit note from exam boards. For deadlines, please check with the relevant exam board – main ones below:

AQA Pearson/Edexcel OCR WJEC/Eduqas

To action a withdrawal in Bromcom, please go to Modules > Examination >  Manage Entries, select one or more students then click on Manage.  Select the Exam Option, change the entry mark to N then Apply. Using No Entry, rather than withdrawing students, ensures that there is a record that the student was originally enrolled for the qualification.

If you need to make tier changes (for example Maths Foundation to Maths Higher), please go to Modules > Examination > Manage Entries, select one or more students then click on Manage.  In the Exam Option selector, choose both tiers then change the original entry mark to N, add an entry for the other tier, then click Apply.

Once you have carried out these processes, you will need to go to Modules > Examination > Manage Submissions, create an amendment file then send to the boards via A2C.

If this withdrawal/change of tier is actioned after the exam has been seated, the student will automatically be removed from the room/seat.

What's New?

  • Analysis – School on a Page- Export to Word & PDF

Modules > Analysis > School  On A Page

School on a Page tabs can now be exported to Word and PDF by clicking on the new Export button.

1 whats new

Clicking the Export button will open the Export popup, where users can select: whether to export to Word or PDF (Word is selected by default), the Page Orientation (Portrait is selected by default), and which tabs to include (all tabs are included by default).

2 whats new 2

  • Student Portal – Detentions – Show Detentions on Student Portal Timetable

Config > Student Portal > Behaviour

A new Detentions option is now available in Behaviour Module Settings. If the Enable Behaviour option is checked, the Enable Detentions option is then enabled. If selected, My Timetable in the Student Portal displays any single or multiple detentions scheduled for a student.

Note: this information only appears on the desktop Student Portal and not the App.

Please see What’s New on Bromcom for the full list of recent developments.

Web Wednesdays

Don’t forget to check out Web Wednesdays for top tips on a variety of topics.

Please go to the Bromcom Community website and sign in.

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Latest Release Notes

You can access the Release Notes for the Integris latest release via this link:  v4.8 (integris-education.com) which includes:

  • Product Changes
    • Removed ambiguity re. role selection when adding new pupils

1 latest release notes

  • # code removed from Daily Register, and moved to the bottom of the list in other attendance screens, to avoid accidental use

2 latest release notes

  • On screen warning if conflicting user roles are assigned

3 latest release notes

  • Statutory Updates
    • Key Stage 2024 Assessment
    • School Workforce Census Update

Useful Links

Please find below some links to pages which may be useful:

Integris Training

Just a reminder that all Integris training is run on demand. Please contact us on: 01865 597620, option 2, to discuss your requirements or for more details.

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Upcoming Training Courses

We have a comprehensive schedule of online ‘live’ SIMS training courses, along with Distance Learning courses, to help you develop your knowledge of SIMS and Arbor, therefore helping you to get the most out of your MIS (Management Information System).

Booking is now open.  Please visit https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/course-list/ to see the full list of courses, or you can click on:

https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/online-training/ for the online (live) courses, or

https://learning.schoolicts.co.uk/courses/ for the Distance Learning courses.

For Upcoming Courses please see below:

Course Name Date More details via this link:
SIMS Exams Organiser (2 Day Course)

Tuesday 16th April (Full Day)

Wednesday 17th April (Full Day)

https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/exams-organiser-online/

 

FMS Basic – Central Schools (These are schools who are maintained by their local authority, and the LA pay their bills on the schools’ behalf) Wednesday 17th April (Half Day)

https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/fms-basic-online-536/

 

Arbor Attendance Wednesday 17th April (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/arbor-attendance/
Arbor Parental Engagement and Communications Thursday 18th April (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/arbor-parental-engagement-and-communications-half-day/
SIMS An Administrators Guide to Nova Friday 19th April (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/admin-guide-maintaining-the-timetable-online/
Arbor Examinations

Friday 19th April (Half Day)

 

https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/arbor-examinations/
SIMS Monitoring Attendance Wednesday 24th April (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/monitoring-attendance-primary-online/

SIMS Administrator – New Office User (Primary)

 

Monday 29th April (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/new-office-user-primary-online/
SIMS Primary Summer Census Tuesday 30th April (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/summer-census-primary-online/
SIMS Secondary Summer Census Wednesday 1st May (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/summer-census-secondary-online/

SIMS Primary Summer Census

 

Wednesday 1st May (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/summer-census-primary-online/
SIMS Standard Reporting Wednesday 1st May (Full Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/standard-reporting-online/
Arbor Assessment User

Wednesday 1st May (Full Day)

 

https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/arbor-basic-assessment-skills/
SIMS Secondary Summer Census Thursday 2nd May (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/summer-census-secondary-online/
Arbor Standard Reporting Thursday 2nd May (Half Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/arbor-standard-reporting-half-day/
SIMS Preparing for a New School Year (Secondary) Friday 3rd May (Full Day) https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/preparing-new-school-year-secondary-online/
SIMS Assessment Skills (2 Day Course) Wednesday 8th May & Thursday 9th May (Full Days)

https://www.schoolicts.co.uk/events/assessment-essential-skills-online/

 

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helloData Dashboard Top Tip

helloData Dashboard top tip of the month

Do you have a pupil who is working significantly below their cohort? Have you a pupil who has very low attendance? Would you like to see your school data without the impact of these pupils and/or others? This is easily achieved on the helloData dashboard.

How to remove a pupil from your reports:

  1. Log into your dashboard and select the Summary tab

1 hellodata

2. Select the left hand filter funnel at the top of the screen

  • Expand the required class from the menu
  • Deselect the pupil in question

2 hellodata

3. Repeat for other pupils as required.

4. The data for the deselected pupil(s) will be excluded from all your reports for the duration of your session, or until you reselect them.

5. Select the left hand filter funnel again to hide the menu.

 

As part of Webinar Week we are running two helloData webinars – click the links below to book: –

Enter assessment data directly into your MIS – saving money and time on 3rd party packages

  • Monday 22nd April 11am – 12pm

Webinar – Introducing helloData – Reporting Made Easy

  • Wednesday 24th April 3.30pm – 4.30pm

Webinar – Introducing helloData – Reporting Made Easy

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Are you in need of non-teaching staff?

Working alongside School ICT, School ICT Resourcing place both permanent and temporary specialist support staff into schools.

Candidates are available from a days placement through to a whole school year. All candidates have completed the safer school recruitment process, and have enhanced DBS clearance.

For further information please call: 0113 372 0039 or visit: www.schoolictresourcing.co.uk

Are you due to retire? If yourself or any colleagues are retiring soon, and would consider working on a temporary or ad-hoc basis, please contact Helen who would love the opportunity to speak with you about the potential of adding you to our candidate list.

Virtual Data Management Service

NEW – Virtual Data Management service (VDM)

When maintaining your schools data is not possible, our Virtual Data Management team enables you to maintain, enhance or completely outsource your schools data management, ensuring best practice and continuity of your schools data, at all times. Whether it be a one off to support with a particular time of year such as census or exams, for a short to medium term period like maternity or sickness cover, or if you’re perhaps struggling to recruit – to fully outsource your schools Data Management, we can provide a solution.

“School ICTs Virtual Data Manager service has provided our school with high-quality day-to-day management of core school student data, support to staff and data analysis.

They have seamlessly completed our School census but have ensured that school admin staff understand their role in the maintenance of student data.

The SLT, teaching and support staff are so impressed with the service being delivered and the advanced level of knowledge and expertise that it brings.

Nothing is too much trouble and our VDM has sorted out many of the issues that we had in our MIS that no one else could previously resolve!

The knowledge that the VDM has of our MIS and all its functionality is seriously impressive along with their knowledge of DFE/ESFA rules, regulations and policy changes.

It is like having a Data Manager in the office next door but just online, they respond promptly to emails, request for reports/data and are happy to arrange phone calls or Teams meetings as required.

I can highly recommend the service – give it a try!

Rachel Mowbray – King Edward VI Grammar School, Louth.

For further information on this new service from School ICT, please visit: Virtual Data Management or call: 0345 222 6802 – option 3 or e-mail: enquiries@schoolicts.co.uk.

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