SIMS September Readiness Checklist

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Check the link between Schoolcomms and SIMS

If there have been any SIMS upgrades, check that the connection between SIMS and Schoolcomms is still working.

Test this by running the Schoolcomms import and checking your data issues here

Access information to assist with scheduling your import here

If you experience any issues, view the Failed Import help guide here

Data issues

Ensure that your data issues are dealt with on a regular basis. If ignored, you may not be
communicating to all imported contacts.

Access the Data Issues help guide here

Import Settings

You can check the data you are currently importing from SIMS via Schoolcomms Desktop.

Access the Import SIMS Data help guide here

Pre-admissions

When your pre-admissions have been entered in SIMS, they can be imported into Schoolcomms (we import pre-admissions with the status Applied, Offered, Accepted, Admitted, and Reserved). Once the admission date on the intake group is reached, they will be admitted. Please remember to update the status of any pre-admissions who are not admitted to the school to the status Rejected or Withdrawal to ensure they are no longer imported into Schoolcomms.

Access the Pre-admission Help Guide here  

Access the Pre-admission FAQ guide here

Clubs

Amend existing or create new Clubs for the New Academic year.

Access the Clubs help guide here

Entering new parent/staff details on SIMS

For parent/staff contact details to be successfully imported into Schoolcomms, there are certain guidelines which need to be followed. Access the SIMS Data help guide here

Parental Responsibility also needs to be applied in SIMS (Section 5 of the pupil record) for parents to be able to give consent, view online reporting information, see balances, and make bookings on School Gateway. To review and identify any gaps in data currently imported into your Schoolcomms account, check your registered users with the Management Report.

Access the Management Dashboard help guide here

New year groups for students

The academic promotion routine in SIMS will automatically increment students’ year groups, which will be updated in Schoolcomms after the import is run. If you experience issues in September with class groups being incorrect, you may need to Validate Memberships in SIMS. We would advise you to contact SIMS Support before running the Validate Memberships routine to confirm that there are no implications of doing so.

Leavers

Please note: When deleting your leavers from Schoolcomms, this is a permanent deletion; only complete once you are certain you no longer need to access any related information or communicate through Schoolcomms.

School leavers need to be given a leaving date (employment end date for staff members) and once the leaving date has passed, they will be taken off roll. Once they are leavers, they can be permanently deleted from Schoolcomms. Access the Delete Leavers help guide here

Once students are identified as leavers in Schoolcomms, they can still be messaged as normal, however they will no longer show in their MIS groups. We would recommend that you manually create a Leavers Group in Schoolcomms to continue to message them in bulk before they are deleted as leavers. Access the Groups help guide here

Once your academic promotion has been run in SIMS, any student self-contacts (i.e. the contact details held in section 4 of their SIMS record) for leavers from the previous academic year will be removed from Schoolcomms, as SIMS will no longer provide us with this data. Any parental contact details (from section 5) will remain in Schoolcomms as normal.

Please ensure that if you need to contact students directly, this is completed before your academic promotion is run in SIMS. Otherwise, you will need to manually re-add your student self-contacts in order to message them.

Access the support guide to assist you with adding members manually in Schoolcomms here

Leavers in Meal Manager (Cypad)

The status of leavers will change to Closed once they have been deleted from Schoolcomms, they will then no longer appear on the Whiteboard.

Adding/amending Bank Details

As part of our improving security standards, schools will be asked for proof of ownership when adding new bank accounts to Schoolcomms.

Access the Bank Accounts help guide here

Create/delete Staff Schoolcomms accounts for new/leaving staff members

Your school multi-user administrators can create, UNLOCK, amend, and delete staff Schoolcomms user accounts.

Access the Create Additional Users help guide here

If your school has a Scheduled Import setup using your Schoolcomms user credentials, please ensure the credentials are updated on the Task Scheduler, you may need your IT Support to assist you with this.

Access information to assist with scheduling your import here

Schoolcomms Dinners

Amend existing or create new Dinner Plans for the New Academic year. Dinner bookings on School Gateway cannot be made for pre-admissions. They can be added to the dinner plan and the school can make bookings on their behalf.

Access the Schoolcomms Dinners help guide here

UIFSM year groups will not be updated until the first import is run following your Academic promotion being completed in your MIS.
We would advise that you do not allow parents to pre-book meals in the Summer.

Meal Manager

To ensure that UIFSM meals are charged correctly on your first day of term, run an import in Schoolcomms before 11am so that the updated year groups will be passed to Cypad.
Depending on when the first import in the new academic year is run in Schoolcomms, pupils and class groups will update in Cypad after the next data sync:
School members – 6am, 11am, 3pm, and 6pm each day.
Pre-admission students will show in Cypad however parents will not be able to book through School Gateway until the pupil is admitted. The school can manually apply preorders for any new starters until they are admitted.
The status of leavers will change to Closed once they have been deleted from Schoolcomms, they will then no longer appear on the Whiteboard.
Access the Meal manager help guide here

School Gateway

Encourage your new and existing parents to register for School Gateway. Useful letter templates can be found in the School Gateway Success Guide here. Also see App/Payments invites in Messaging templates. Access the Full Parent Guide here. Access the School Gateway help guide here. Please remind parents to ensure that they are on the most recent version of School Gateway for the best user experience.

Apply the new Academic Year Timetable in SIMS

Please note, if you have Timetables switched “on” in Online Reporting and you have already applied your timetables in SIMS, there is a chance that the timetables for the new academic year will show in School Gateway as this academic year ends.

If you do not want the new timetables to be displayed to users before September, either do not apply the curriculum timetables in SIMS until September, or switch off the timetable view in Online Reporting until the new term starts.

Access Online Reporting help guide here

Please note: You may need to change your import settings to import ‘all groups’ to ensure that parents can view the Timetable.

Text Credits

Top up text credits to ensure you have enough for the new academic year.

Access the Ordering Text Credits help guide here

Space Usage

Archive messages and clean up the inbox.

Access the Desktop Archiving help guide here

Access the Archiving via the Web (Sent Items) help guide here

Payments

Amend existing or create new payment requests for the new academic year.

Access the Payment Requests help guide here

Please note: Schoolcomms recommends that a new payment request is created if a vast amount of monies has been collected to prevent time-outs.

Refunds

For credit balances for leavers etc, access the Refunds help guide here

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