This document is meant to serve as an overview of the entire Secondary Master Schedule process with links specific setup items. Read this prior to starting the master schedule process to familiarize yourself with it. The actual steps are outlined in phases in the Scheduling Help documents.
There are several important things to consider when creating a schedule from scratch. Here are a few that will dictate how the schedule is created:
1. Are you changing your periods / timeblocks? If not, and this year's schedule will be similar to the one used last year, you may consider using Option 1 and import your schedule.
2. Will you use Rotating Days or some other type of non-traditional timeblock? If yes, this will require work between the Calendar, Day Types, and Sections. Please consult an Illuminate representative before proceeding.
3. Will you use Houses? If so, there are a few options. One option is set up early in the process and the other later in the process. If Houses pertain to your school, please see the lesson on Houses and decide which path you will take.
4. Have you prepared some sort of a visual layout of the schedule? This is often helpful not only for the master schedule builder but for the Illuminate support team as well.
Please feel free to consult Illuminate at help@illuminateEd.com for assistance.
Complete Rollover for the Coming Year
The rollover process is in the Phase 1 - Prerequisite Help documents and is to be completed by the district/LEA system admin.
In Illuminate the term Rollover encompasses setting up the new Session (school year), Terms, Timeblocks, Occurrences, mass creating enrollment records for students, and mass creating affiliations for users.
Follow the steps in this lesson to complete this essential process: Rollover School Year
While Rollover is a System Admin function, it is important that other roles understand the process as a high level because it can impact their work in the system.
Student and staff need to be rolled over prior to working on any aspect of the master schedule. If students are not rolled over, they will not have enrollment in the new year. If staff is not rolled over, you won't be able to tie them to sections, courses, timeblocks, etc
IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR OFFICE STAFF: Once students have been rolled over, they will be enrolled in the new school year. However, if a student should exit your school before next year:
1. You will need to first delete the next school year Enrollment record.
2. Then you can exit them from the current year.
Update Course Information
DISTRICT AND SITE ADMIN: Updating your course catalog before scheduling will likely make scheduling MUCH easier. The following information should be completed:
1. Course Grade Levels - If a course should only be taken by certain grade levels (e.g. English 9 is only taken by 9th graders), then you need to affiliate them to the correct grade levels.
2. Site Affiliations - To make filtering and using your courses MUCH easier, you should align the course to the appropriate school. You DO NOT want to mass affilate to every school if only certain schools use particular courses. For example, Algebra should be affiliated with the correct middle and high schools, not elementary. And elementary courses (3rd and 4th Grade) should be affiliated to the elementary schools.
3. Active vs Inactive Courses - If you need to retire or reactivate a course, it needs to be flagged as such. You do not want to inactivate a course that is still being used in the Live schedule. You should inactivate the course after the school year is over.
4. Min. Capacity and Max Capacity - Are the course Max and Min. student totals accurate? What's the least and greatest number of students you want in a class? You definitely need to set Maximum capacity so the Scheduler knows how many students to place in a Course.
NOTE: If you want to adjust the number of students per class at the section level, you can do that from'Edit Draft Schedule Sections' after your draft has been created.
5. Term Length - Do you have courses that only span a particular term (e.g. the course is semester long, not year long)? These need to be flagged as such so the Course Tally (see below) page populates accurately.
6. School Type - If the course is an elementary course or high school course, flag it as such.
7. Session Type - If the course is for Summer School only, you need to flag the appropriate Session. In most cases, the courses are often the same in BOTH Summer and Normal. So, you'll want to leave the course unflagged (Blank).
8. Department - To make filtering and using courses MUCH easier, select the appropriate department.
In general, you should be very familiar with how the Course Details impacts your courses and master schedule.
Enter Student Course Requests
VERY IMPORTANT: When working with a new schedule, it is important to login to the appropriate year. Click on the Control Panel and select a date from the correct year. For example, if you are working on next year's schedule, then use the Calendar to select a date fromthe next school year. This is important to ensure your course requests apply to the correct year.
After students have been rolled over, you can login to the new school year and begin entering course requests.
You can enter individual Student Course Requests or assign Course Requests in mass via Packages and Student Groups. Even if you are going to use Packages and Student Groups, note that it is highly likely that you will still assign some course requests on an individual basis. See: Student Course Requests (Individual Students) OR Importing Course Requests
To mass create student course requests, follow the lesson on Packages: Packages
COURSE REQUEST REPORTS TO BE RUN IN THE FOLLOWING ORDER:
For more information see Reports: Course Requests
1. Course Request by Student - To view a PDF or Excel copy of all course requests by student.
2. Student Course Request Counts - To view the total number of course requests by student and look for problems with too few or too many course requests. Click on the student's ID number in the report to be directed to the their course requests.
3. Course Tally - To view aggregate course request information and determine the number of sections needed per course. Use this report to increase or decrease actual section numbers to be created and view average number of students per section based on course maximums on course catalog. Once this number is determined these sections can be created in bulk from this Course Tally Report.
Set Teacher Timeblock, Teacher Course Affiliations, and Student Restrictions
Teachers must be affiliated with the appropriate Periods / Timeblocks and Courses. Follow these lessons:
Teacher Time Affiliations do not flow over from year to year. They must be set every year. Use the 'Select All' checkboxes to mass set and save time. Follow this lesson: Teacher Time Affiliations
Teacher Course Affiliations do carry over from year to year. Once you set these the first time (your first year scheduling in Illuminate), they will carry forward every year after that. Follow this lesson: Teacher Course Affiliations
Some students must be restricted either from other students OR teachers. The mass student scheduler will honor these restrictions. Follow this lesson: Student Restrictions
Create a 'Draft' Schedule
Login to the appropriate school and year. Go to Scheduling > Draft Overview > Select a Draft.
After deciding on Option 1 or 2 below, see Create a Draft Schedule.
At this point you have two options:
Option 1: Import your current live schedule as next year's draft. One way to potentially save time building your master schedule is to import a previous year's schedule and then modify accordingly. Some things to keep in mind:
YOU SHOULD NOT IMPORT if you are making major changes to your schedule.
For example, Are you adding or removing:
- Periods / Timeblocks - These must remain exactly the same or you cannot import.
- Rotating Days?
- Houses - This matters if sections are tied to Houses and you are changing House names, grouping, etc.
- Significant staff or department changes?
- Are you making other major changes to sections?
Significant schedule changes may make importing a previous schedule prohibitive. It may be better to build your schedule from scratch. If you are uncertain about the route to choose, or want to strategize or troubleshoot options, please contact Illuminate at help@illuminateEd.com. If you can include a visual diagram of what you are trying to do that would be greatly appreciated. It is definitely better to contact us before you get too far along!
If you choose this option then skip down to Modify Sections Via The Board 2.0.
Option 2: Create a draft from Scratch.
You can create as many drafts as you like and can continue to tweak and refine your master schedule with each draft. Keep in mind, in the end you will only publish one draft and separate drafts cannot be merged into one.
The idea behind creating multiple drafts is...
Before making any significant changes to the schedule, you may want to make a Duplicate of your draft schedule. That way if you make changes that you later regret, you can always go back to your original or 'template' draft. To make a Duplicate, go to 'Draft Schedules' and use the option 'Duplicate'.
RECOMMENDATION: Since you can create many drafts, a good naming convention that includes the date is helpful. For example: Draft 1 2-27-14.
Mass Create Sections via Course Tally
Once your course requests are complete, you will need to create sections to fulfill those requests. This can be completed in bulk using the Course Tally.
Course Tally is: (1) a report on the number of course requests and (2) a tool to mass create sections. You will manually set the number of sections for each Course that has received requests. Follow this lesson: Mass Create Sections via Course Tally
This is a critical part of the master schedule process. It will take time to review the requests and assign the appropriate number of sections.
Place Sections via The Draft Board
Section creation is not a one step process. For example, sections can be built en masse from Course Tally. Once you have 'Saved' or run the Course Tally, you can go to The Board 2.0 and click 'Place Sections'. You can then take the sections you created in Course Tally and place them on The Board 2.0. From the Board 2.0 BETA, click 'Place Sections' and then click:
1. Place Singletons (1st)
2. Place Doubletons (2nd)
3. Place Tripletons (3rd)
4. Place All Other Sections (4th)
You may choose to manually place sections (at any time) by selecting it from the 'Sections to Be Placed' Dropdown menu
Modify Sections via The Board 2.0
You can make changes to the Master Schedule via The Draft Board. Follow the Lesson: Place and Create Sections Using the Draft Board
1. To change teacher, period, room, course to a section, click the blue section ID #.
2. To add new sections, click 'Create Section'.
3. To 'unstrand' sections, click the drop down menu 'Sections to be placed'.
4. To create Block sections, select the section and select the correct number of periods.
5. To DELETE sections, go to Edit Draft Schedule Sections.
6. Rotating or Minimum Days - If you use rotating days or minimum days, you will likely need to set the appropriate days on your calendar (e.g. A Day, B Day, Minimum Day, etc) > then create Period/Timeblocks that represent the schedule you want to create (e.g. Period/Timeblocks for A Days, B Days, and Minimum Days) then align the section to the appropriate Period/Timeblock (e.g. A Day, B Day, etc).
NOTE: Prior to running the Mass Student Scheduler use the Draft Board as a report to verify that section placement makes sense. Use the Department, Teacher, Course, and/or Period/Timeblock filters on the Board 2.0 to look at different aspects of your schedule. Do the Departments look right? Specific teachers? Periods/timeblocks?
At this point you should have a good perspective of your draft master schedule.
Do You Use Houses?
If you use Houses:
You need to recreate the Houses each year. Follow this lesson: Create Houses
Then, you can either manually move students into the appropriate Draft House for the coming year.
If students are remaining in the same house, you can have Illuminate push those into the same house again. Please contact help@IlluminateEd.com for assistance.
Once you've placed and created your sections, certain sections must be linked or tied together. This is in the cases where one section must follow the other. For example, Government will follow Econ and vice versa. These particular sections must be linked. Follow this lesson: Linked Sections
It is recommended that you:
1. Do your linked sections after you are satisfied with your master schedule. You do not want to make a lot of changes to the schedule after going through the work of linking sections.
2. As you are linking sections, you will want to take careful notes on the sections you've already used. This will help ensure you do not reuse or duplicate using a section.
View Reports Before Running Mass Student Scheduler
You can view these reports before running the mass student scheduler to get an idea of what the master schedule structure/layout looks like up to this point.
1. Draft Overview - This page provides an overview of the schedule - total # of sections created, total number of courses added to the schedule, total number of staff, and more.
2. The Board 2.0 - This provides you an overall view of the master schedule and allow you to make direct changes to the master schedule. You can change sections, create sections, filter courses/depts/teachers, and much more.
3. Draft Schedule Sections - This table lists all sections you've imported or created. You can use the filter to view only certain sections (e.g. section by department) or you can use the column headers in the table to sort the data and view for example sections that are missing data (e.g. staff, courses, etc). You can also view Active and Inactive sections.
4. Conflict Matrix - This report identifies potential conflicts in the schedule.
Schedule Individual Students Manually
You may have students who need to be scheduled by hand before running the Mass Student Scheduler. The student scheduler will honor these placements first. To set a specific schedule for a student, follow this lesson: Manually Schedule Students.
Run Mass Student Scheduler
WARNING: DO NOT MAKE ANY ADDITIONAL CHANGES TO YOUR SCHEDULE WHILE THE MASS STUDENT SCHEDULER IS RUNNING. THIS COULD CAUSE THE SCHEDULER TO FAIL.
The scheduler will:
1. Honor all manually scheduled students first.
2. It will also work to fulfill course requests AND balance the overall master schedule.
Follow this lesson: Run Mass Student Scheduler
The Mass Student Scheduler takes about 10 minutes to run and will be placed in a queue while running. You can access it by going to either:
1. Scheduling > Scheduler Execution Status
2. Control Panel > Scheduled Jobs. You will need to have the permission to access Scheduled Jobs in order to view this page.
View Reports After Running the Mass Student Scheduler
SEE: Reports: After Running the Mass Student Scheduler
1. Draft Schedules - This page provides high level info about the schedule - percentage of requests fulfilled, percentage of schedules completed, and more.
2. The Board 2.0 - This provides you an overall view of the master schedule and allows you to make direct changes to the master schedule. You can change sections, create sections, filter courses/depts/teachers, and much more. Additionally, you can also move students out of classes and mass move students to other sections.
3. Draft Schedule Rosters - View draft class rosters before the schedule is published.
4. Incomplete Draft Schedules - View students who are missing a class/period. An 'X' indicates a missing period/timeblock. Use the filters at the top of the report to control the list.
5. Master Schedule Conflicts - See sections that may conflict with other sections.
6. Course Fulfillment - Located under Scheduling - View fulfillment of courses based off of course requests.
7. Full Courses
8. Student Scheduler Actions - Review the percentage of course requests satisfied per student.
Make Changes to Sections
CAUTION: There are many ways to make adjustments to your master schedule. Before making any significant changes, you may want to Duplicate or make a copy of your draft. To do this, go to 'Draft Schedules' and use the option 'Duplicate'.
You can make changes to the schedule via The Board 2.0. Once on the Board 2.0, click 'Place Sections'. See: Use the Board 2.0 (scroll to Place Sections)
1. To change teacher, period, room, or course to a section, click the blue section ID #.
2. To add new sections, click 'Create Section'.
3. To 'unstrand' sections, click the drop down menu 'Sections to be placed'.
4. To DELETE sections, go to Edit Draft Schedule Sections.
5. Use the Department, Teacher, Course, and/or Period/Timeblock filters on the Board 2.0 to look at different aspects of your schedule. Do the Departments look right? Specific teachers? Periods/timeblocks?
Publish Schedule and Review Post-Publish Reports
You will review the schedule multiple times and make many adjustments. Once you are satisfied, you can follow this lesson: Publish Final Schedule
WARNING: You can re-publish a Draft Schedule up until attendance is taken or teachers start using the Gradebook. Once attendance is taken or teachers start using the Gradebook, you can no longer override a schedule. This will cause significant issues.
Once a schedule is published, that schedule is now 'Live'. You can use Live Schedule tools to make adjustments.
1. The Board 2.0 - Located under Scheduling - Again, by far your best report to view the overall schedule, filter, and make direct changes.
2. Schedule 2.0 - Located under Students - To spot check individual student schedules and make changes/edits.
3. Edit Sections - Located under Scheduling - To edit existing sections, make new sections, and more.
4. Incomplete Live Schedules - Located under Scheduling - To find students who do not have a complete schedule.
5. Master Schedule List - Located under Scheduling - To see a break down of all teachers, the courses they will teach, class occupancy, and more.
6. Teacher Schedules
Print Schedule and Rosters
PRINT INDIVIDUAL SCHEDULES: Go to Student > Locator > Select the 'Download' Locator option
MASS PRINT SCHEDULES: Go to Schedule > Locators > Select the options you want to generate your students' schedules
MASS PRINT ROSTERS: Go to Attendance > Select Class Roster PDF > Select the options to mass print class roster
Some Additional Things to Keep in Mind
1. Adjust any new staff or placeholder staff to the new school year and give them proper permissions and affiliations.
2. Complete the Calendar for the new year once the school calendar is finalized.
3. Complete Timblock Occurrences.
4. Complete Reporting Periods for the new year for attendance reports once these are established.
5. Set Grading Periods so teachers can use the Gradebook and Report Cards.