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Scheduling (33)
This year we are adding a zero hour into our class scheduling.  Not all students will have to sign up for a zero hour class.  For instance, the kids that play JH sports will sign up for the zero hour as part of their PE credits. Some of the zero hour classes will be for HS students as well.  Not sure how to set it up where the attendance data reflects that this is an extra period.  

Does anyone have any experience with setting up something like this in PS?  
6 Responses to "Zero Hour" (view all)

Do no add the 0 period to the bell schedule. That will make it a non-attendance period. 

So, how should I add it in.  It will be classes that take attendance and grades.

I'm sorry, I misunderstood. If you are going to mark attendance in that class, this process would not work.  For me, I would assign those students a different FTE with a different attendance conversion to calculate the attendance correctly for those students.

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We had a new teacher who was here for about a month and then took medical leave. At the time, I didn't know it was going to continue the rest of the semester and didn't add the sub in as a co-teacher. Now this teacher has resigned for medical reasons and the sub is taking over her classes. I discovered last week the sub has been logging in as the teacher since the beginning. (Yeah, my fault I didn't fix this sooner.)

What is the best way to switch the class over to the sub? I want the sub's name to show as the teacher name on report cards next week. Under Edit Section, I tried adding the sub as the lead teacher and removing the original teacher. But I got a warning about losing Gradebook data. I briefly considered editing the name of the short-term teacher, but I hate to do that.

Any suggestions? TIA.

Jane Campbell
Marian High School / Omaha
PowerSchool 11.0.5 ... soon to be 12.1 
2 Responses to "Best way to switch teachers midway through semester"

Jane, on the sections screen for this course,  I think you can remove the sub as the co-teacher and then change the lead teacher to the sub.

Yes, you can switch the teacher, but I got a warning that I would lose that teacher's Gradebook if I deleted the teacher. That concerns me this close to the end of the semester. I think I'm going to temporarily rename the teacher account until after the end of the semester. That way, the new teacher's name will appear on the stored grades. Thanks.

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Our registrar is attempting to break up a few very large study halls into smaller sections. Since you can't mass unenroll students from a course section, this will be a long, tedious process for her. I found a post on PSUG from 2006 that said you can just delete a course section and everyone in that section will be dropped from the course. Then you can re-create sections and mass enroll students.

This seems too easy and like it would leave orphan files. Has anyone done this? Can you just delete the section form the Edit Section screen? (School Setup > Section > Edit Section > Delete Section).

Or do I delete the section through DDA? (DDA > CC table > SectionID=### >  Modify Records > Delete section)

Is there a better way to unenroll about 160 students from course sections? Anything to avoid one-by-one modify schedule option!


Jane Campbell / Marian High School / Omaha, NE

Tags: DDAScheduling
2 Responses to "Can you delete a section with students enrolled in it?"

We had a similar situation last year, Jane. Here is the method we used to handle moving the student enrollments fairly quickly (deleting the section wasn’t an option for us as the term had already started; I would be concerned about ghost enrollments in your situation and advise against deleting the section with students enrolled):
Create all of the needed sections so they are ready to enroll students.
Then from the large section page that lists all of the students use the checkboxes to select a group of students needing moved to a specific section. Use the Drop and re-enroll button to move the group of students together to the correct section. Repeat this drop and re-enroll with each group of students from the original large section until it is down to only one of the smaller sections.
Good luck!

That looks very easy. Thanks, Amanda! :-)

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PLEASE NOTE: PowerSchool has just canceled these sessions because not enough participants signed up.Thank you. - 2/14/2018

In addition to the ESU 10 Scheduling workshops, PowerSchool is also offering the following:
PowerScheduler: Prepare to Build (3 day), PowerScheduler: Load Process (2 day), and PowerScheduler: Build Workshop (4 day). 

These are hosted by the Diocese of Lincoln, but are offered by PowerSchool and open to any school in the area.  PowerSchool asked the Diocese of Lincoln to host these workshops since it is in a centralized location for many School Districts. To be clear:  these sessions will be open to ALL school districts and are NOT exclusive to the Diocese of Lincoln schools. Since these sessions are offered by PowerSchool and the Diocese of Lincoln is only hosting, if you would like to attend you will have to register through PowerSource and the registration fee would be paid by the school or the attendee.

PowerScheduler: Prepare to Build   March 19th – 21st    $1,200 per attendee:

The PowerScheduler Prepare to Build 3-day session is designed for schools that need extra assistance in working through the preparation process. The Prepare to Build 3-day session will go over all items that need to be completed in order to have a productive build experience. This course is designed for people who will need more assistance with setting up the parameters for their school.
Objectives: -Introduce PowerScheduler and Prepare to Build process -Use demo data to discuss and evaluate setup items -Brainstorm school specific items such as use of Teams, Buildings, or Houses -Analyze Room, Teacher, Student, and course request screen setup -Walk through comprehensive setup of Courses, including Course Relationships -Discuss use of Constraints -Download engine and demonstrate Build process -Evaluate common errors in process -Begin to work on individual school setup, focusing on specific "tricky" topics such as Course Setup, Course Relationships, and Constraints

PowerScheduler: Load Process    March 22nd – 23rd    $800 per attendee:

The PowerScheduler Load Process 2-day session is designed for schools that need extra assistance in working through the preparation process. This course is designed for people who will need more assistance with setting up the parameters for their school.
Objectives -Introduce PowerScheduler and Load process -Use demo data to discuss and evaluate setup items -Brainstorm school specific items such as use of Teams, Buildings, or Houses -Analyze Room, Teacher, Student, and course request page setup -Walk through necessary setup of Courses, including valid Course Relationships -Discuss use of Constraints -Download engine and demonstrate Load process -Evaluate common errors in Load process -Begin to work on individual school setup, focusing on specific "tricky" topics such as Course Requests screen setup and Constraints

PowerScheduler: Build Workshop    April 24th – 27th      $1,600 per attendee:

The PowerScheduler Build workshop is designed for schools that need extra assistance in working through the build process.
Objectives -Walk through Build process -Evaluate and analyze validation and build errors -Work with trainer to resolve validation and build errors -Consult with trainer as needed to effectively build the school's master schedule

To register for these courses,
1. Log on to PowerSource
2. Click on the Training Tab
3. Click on the Training Calendar Tile
4. Find the course you want to attend and click the Request button on the right.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

Adrian Carlson                                 
0 Responses to "PowerSchool Scheduling Workshops Hosted by Diocese of Lincoln"

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Upcoming Scheduling Workshops at ESU 10
Cost: $35 (lunch included)

PowerScheduler is a very powerful tool that can save a lot of time for whoever setups the schedule and enrolls students. Everyone should be using PowerScheduler to have students enter their course requests for next year. PowerScheduler can use these requests to enroll students into their courses. The workshops are broken down into three areas:

PowerScheduler: Build & Load overview - Thursday, February 8th   
This workshop will cover the initial setup that is needed to get the scheduling process started, including the setup of the student request screens.

PowerScheduler: Prepare to Build - Thursday, March 15th

This workshop will cover the complex world of a Build. A Build is where you give PS all the necessary information and it creates a schedule. If you don’t like your current schedule or your schedule is going to change for next year, letting PowerScheduler Build the schedule is an option to creating the schedule manually.

PowerScheduler: Prepare to Load - Thursday, April 12th

This workshop will show how to Load the student requests into the schedule. No matter if you are going to use this current year’s schedule (even with a few tweaks) or if you had PowerScheduler Build it, the Load process will automate enrolling students into their requested courses.

To register for these courses, click HERE and search for PowerSchool.

Also, PowerSchool will be offering scheduling workshops in Lincoln, hosted by the Diocese of Lincoln Schools. More information will be posted soon.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

Wayne Wiens                          Ellie Schroeder       
308.698.1996                          308-698-1917


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Are there any other Nebraska schools that might be using Phoenix Learning or Richard James for scheduling help this year? I'd love to share expenses with another school, if possible. They've told me Richard might be working with other nearby schools. Thanks!

Jane Campbell
Marian High School
Omaha, NE
5 Responses to "Anyone hire Richard James for scheduling help?" (view all)

Yes, for two or three summers I hosted a Powerschool workshop at CLJMS. Richard was the presenter. He has a lot of knowledge.

Thanks, John. Anyone planning to use him this year who might want to try to share his travel expenses?

If anyone would host a workshop I would love to attend.
Bev Lauby
Lexington Public Schools

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We're interested in getting a consultant to help with next year's schedule. I used Phoenix Learning about 12 years ago and will probably call them but thought I'd check with all of you. Do you have someone you would recommend for scheduling help? As administrator retired who did a lot with scheduling ... she had very specific ways to handle things ... would like to find better ways to do some things. TIA.

Jane Campbell / Marian High School / Omaha
0 Responses to "Looking for scheduling help"

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A PS support rep told me last year that splitting our year-long classes to 2 semester-long classes would: 1. Make scheduling easier and 2. Prevent end-of-year report card issues with dropped courses.

So now I'm looking at splitting all our year-long courses for the 2018-19 school year. If you're at a high school, do you split all your classes into two semester-long courses for scheduling purposes? How does this affect classes like science or math -- i.e., Do your students generally get the same teacher both semesters, or do they randomly get two different teachers for these kinds of classes?

Is there anything I should consider before making this change? The teachers supposedly already teach classes at the same pace so it shouldn't affect them. Just want to make sure I've considered everything before I do this. 


Jane Campbell
Marian High School / Omaha
6 Responses to "Semester courses vs. yearlong courses" (view all)

Do you use PowerScheduler and do you let PowerScheduler build your schedule from scratch each year, or does your school manually create a schedule?  This will impact how you proceed.

We just went through the same dilemma with one of our high schools at our district.  Five of our high schools are smaller and have enrollments of under 250 students. They all have yearlong courses and do their scheduling through PowerScheduler.
We are bringing our largest high school with enrolment of  1300+ and in the old system (SMS) they have their yearlong courses split out into semester versions. Initially, we wanted to try to get them on the same course catalog at the other high schools with yearlong courses. After months of back and forth we determined that it would be best for them to keep Semester versions of yearlong courses.

It all depends on how you want to schedule. If you split the courses into semester versions default there is no guarantee that your students would get the same teachers or sections both terms. If you wanted to ensure that students get the same teacher and section in the following term you would need to create sections links or course restraints in PowerScheduler to make sure that happens. This could end up being a lot of work since you would need to link each semester 1 course to the semester 2 course.  

The one thing that made us stick with semester courses for this high school is that we have a requirement that requires any student who has failed a semester of a year long course to retake the semester the following year. Switching to yearlong versions of courses would cause several issues for us. A students that failed a semester of a yearlong course would have to register for full year course the following year just to retake the semester they missed. So any course request report would list the student as retaking a course for a full year, Even though they are just registering for a semester. The student would also take a “full seat” for the year long course even though they are only going to be in the class for a semester. This could potentially skew the number of potential sections needed. 

PowerSchool does have a “split and commit” function that we considered. It might work in your case, even though it did not work for our needs. If you use the Split and Commit and you use the automated walk in scheduler there will be no section link between the sections.  So there is no guarantee that the student would get the matching section on the opposite term if using AWIS.

The Split Year Long Function was designed to give the customers the benefit of building sections of courses as year long courses and then splitting them into semester sections.  This allows more flexibility in student movement between sections at semester end as well as to allow a student to take just one “makeup” semester of a course.

Power Scheduler (before the Commit):
The split is only a Power Scheduler function so it must be done after the last Load and before the Commit.

Do not do it until you are absolutely sure you do not want to build and load again because it doubles the requests for the year long courses.

Each section in a teacher’s schedule becomes 2 sections and each enrollment in the student schedules becomes 2 enrollments. For example, MAT1000.1 year long becomes MAT1000.1 and MAT1000.1001 with semester terms.

The course preference screen does not change because that is no longer used at this point.

Customers often do the “Split” after their last Load but weeks before the Commit so they can use the “Split” sections to do final adjustments to student schedules.

Credit for the course may have to be adjusted.  If they have used this function before then the credit is set at .5 in the Courses Table if a student should receive 1 credit for the completion of the year.  In the Course Catalog in Power Scheduler the credit should be changed back to 1 to reflect the total credit for the year during the request process.Currently there is a “bug” in the Online Course Request Screen though and it is calculating the credits requested based upon the Courses Table and not upon the Power Scheduler ScheduleCourseCatalog Table.

Customers need to be careful not to change the live side credit if classes are still in session and grades have not been stored.

Live Side (after the Commit) AWI Considerations:

On the live side the student would need 2 requests for AWI.

On the live side a check would have to be placed in scheduling preferences to allow same course different terms if using AWI.

On the live side there is no section link between the sections.  So there is no guarantee that the student would get the matching section on the opposite term if using AWI.

Probably more information that what you requested but maybe some of this will help.

We do use PowerScheduler and allow it to create a schedule from scratch each year. But we also do a lot of manual changes before our schedule is ready. As a Catholic school, students have a required year-long theology course each year, in addition to the usual year-long math, science, English courses. So it's always tough getting the electives and semester courses to schedule around the yearlong ones.

Adrian ... thanks for the lengthy explanation about the split and commit function. I didn't know about that function. It might be something we can try.

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Is there a way to pull students who have no course requests? TIA

Jane Campbell
Marian High School
4 Responses to "Pulling students with no course requests" (view all)

Just found a PowerScheduler report (Student Request Tally) that lists all students and the number of courses and credits they are requesting. Does anyone  have a sqlReports4 that would pull this info, by any chance? TIA

P.S. Please don't tell me you all have the day off!! ;-)

I found a code to use to search it is *hours_requested < 1
You can put what ever number to find students that have some but not enough.

I looked at my sql4 reports and did not see one for power scheduler.  I have a couple reports for incomplete schedules but noting for requests. 
We are working in Columbus!!!!

Yes, on the live side, I set the term to 17-18 then search *currenthours_requested

There is also a *hours_requested but I've never used that one. Not sure why....

From PowerSource article 7671

(PowerScheduler) Requested Credit Hours in Scheduling Year
Format: *hours_requested[operator][number]

(Live Side) Requested Credit Hours in Current Year
Format: *currenthours_requested[operator][number]


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Do you schedule a summer term in PowerSchool? If so, when does your summer term begin and end?

We're planning to add a summer term for the 2017-18 school year. I just discovered the administrators plan to begin summer classes on June 1, which is one week (4 work days) after final exams for the 2016-17 year. It's also one day BEFORE the current 16-17 year technically ends in PowerSchool (I always pad a few days at the end). Not sure how/when I will be doing EOY processing with this tight of a schedule.

Any suggestions? Suggestions on how I can persuade the administrators to wait a couple of weeks before starting summer term? ;-) TIA.

Jane Campbell
Marian High School

Tags: Schedulingsummer
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