Once a District has Aeries Communications enabled and configured, the District can choose to send attendance notifications to parents with a variety of options. This can be configured differently for each school, and can accommodate daily or period absence codes. Configuration for Attendance Notifications can be accessed under Communications under the School Info node in the navigation.
An unlimited number of message “templates” can be created here for various purposes. Most Districts will have a single message for Period Absences, for example, with multiple schools associated with it; however, each school could have a separate template if schools need to have different options.
It is important to note that Absence codes must be defined at the District Level and must contain codes used at all schools. It is recommended that all schools in your District have standardized absence codes. These can be updated on the Update Absence Code screen.
The following types of messages and configuration options can be configured. For all of the message types below, an absence will only be counted if the absence code is in the list of Attendance Codes selected for that message template.
- All Day Absence– notification of an all-day absence for today.
- Count of All Day Absences– notification of total count of absences this school year. A minimum number of absences can be specified. A notification will be sent when a student first reaches the minimum number of absences, and a subsequent notification will be sent each day the student accrues an additional all day absence.
- All Day Absences On Previous Days– this message type can be used for example to notify parents that their student has uncleared daily absences.
- Period Absence– notifications of period absences for today. Additional settings for this message type include:
- Number of absences– Message will not be triggered until the student reaches this minimum number for the day.
- Minutes after start of period- Can be configured to start sending messages x amount of minutes after start of period. This can be set to give teachers time to enter their attendance before these messages start to send.
- Repeat Type– Notifications can be sent as No Repeat, Every Period, or at the End of Day once they meet the minimum number of absences specified.
- Period Absence Summary - summary of period absences for today. Unlike the regular Period Absence message type, this notification will be sent once per day at the specified Run Time (Note: Due to Reporting Engine constraints, the actual run time may be up to 10 minutes later than the specified time). Students will be included if they have at least one period absence for the current day. For example, some schools may wish to have a mid-morning notification that includes period absences as of a certain time of day rather than notifying parents after each period. Multiple instances of this message type can be configured to send this notification multiple times per day. It is important to note that different instances of this notification type are not linked. With notifications set up for different times in the day, even if attendance has not changed between the run times, the parent will receive additional notifications.
- Count of Period Absences– includes a total count of period absences this school year. A minimum number of absences can be specified. A notification will be sent when a student first reaches the minimum number of period absences, and a subsequent notification will be sent each day the student accrues any additional period absences.
- Period Absences On Previous Days– this message type can be used for example to notify parents that their student has uncleared period absences.
Traditionally schools have attendance notifications call the parent in the evening for period attendance activity for the current day. If you wish to notify parents every period, Period Absences can be configured to notify the parent after a certain number of minutes after the start of the period.
Important variable “mail-merged” information such as Student Name, Date the student was absent, or periods the student was absent can be included within the message. Click the blue information button next to the Notification Message for examples of variable fields that can be included.
Fields currently available to be included in the messages are:
[GradeDescription] – "Fourth Grade", "Fifth Grade", etc
[StudentName] – "FirstName LastName"
[StudentID] – STU.ID
[SchoolName] – LOC.NM
[SchoolPhone] – LOC.AC-LOC.TL
[AttDate] – The date of the attendance occurrence
[AttCount] – The count of attendance code hits from the defined rules
[AttPeriods] – "period 2", "periods 1 and 2", "periods 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6"
Once all message templates have been created, click Enable Attendance Notification System to turn on all notifications that have been created.
Message templates can be disabled at any point after they are created. In addition, specific schools can also be disabled not to send messages.