TABLE OF CONTENTS
The Flex SMS Board is part of the Flex Scheduling feature in Aeries that has been created to assist the user with updating the Scheduling Master Schedule.
Flex Scheduling eliminates the use of the typical 1-9 periods and uses Flex Period time frames to display on the grid. The Flex SMS Board will display details of the section with some editing capabilities. Additional enhancements will be made to allow additional adding and editing of sections including adding/editing staff members to sections.
Filter Pages by "flex scheduling" or navigate to Scheduling Process > Flex SMS Board.
The Scheduling Master Schedule will be displayed with the primary staff member's full name on the left side with identifying rows of sections. Along the top of the grid, the time frames are displayed as previously configured in the Flex Periods page. A vertical red line will move throughout the timeline as time progresses throughout the day.
Each class displays the section's information: the course title, semester, and number of students. If a staff member is assigned to more than one section per time frame or has sections that overlap time frames, the staff row will expand to display the multiple sections per staff. Clicking on any class will highlight the class and the section's information will display at the top left of the page:
The top right of the page displays different options available. Two tabs are provided: Display, Scheduling Options, Color Codes, and Scheduling Statistics.
Display Options ↑
The Flex SMS Board will open displaying the Semester selected. In the above example the Year term is selected. Available options include:
- Semester: Select the term to display: Year, Fall, or Spring.
- Group by Department: Selecting this checkbox will sort the classes by Department and display the department name above the teacher name column. The department codes are assigned on the Courses page.
- Show Course Number: Selecting this checkbox will display the Course Number in the class cell. If is recommended to view the section details using the top section in cases where the course number causes the course name to cut off.
- Show Department Colors: Selecting this checkbox will display the classes with the colors assigned to the departments on the Color Codes tab.
- Show Singletons in Red: Selecting this checkbox will display all Singleton classes for a course in red.
- Skip Inactive Sections: Selecting this checkbox will not display sections tagged as inactive.
- Skip Teacher Aides: Selecting this checkbox will not display sections of courses that are tagged as Teacher Aide on the Course Data form. Staff members with one or more teacher aide sections as their only assigned course, will continue to display on the board with no sections visible.
- Show Period Title: Selecting this option will include the Flex period short title in the details of each section. Checking the option on and off will immediately reload the board and the last selected option will be remembered for each user.
In the following example, Semester will be changed to Fall, courses will be displayed with Department Colors and we will Skip Inactive Sections to hide them. We will also show the period title in the board. Click Save and Reload to save the changes.
Note: Staff members with all inactive sections will continue to display on the board which can help view the availability of the teacher.
The section will display the course name, term, period title if selected, and total number of students in the class.
Period View ↑
The Period View check box will switch the board from a time view to a period-oriented view.
Users will see the top row with Flex Period titles along with the corresponding start and end times. The staff names include the Staff ID only when the Period View option is selected. The Period View option will remain selected or deselected as users go in and out of the Flex SMS board.
While in the Period View users can use the new Period Filter to filter out the desired periods to display on the board.
Select all or individual periods to view on the board. When the Close button is clicked, the Flex SMS board will automatically reload with the selected periods to view.
By default, periods that fall between 7:00am to 3:00pm are selected. When a user leaves the board and returns, previously selected periods will reset to the default periods.
Note: The Scheduling Master Board report will not honor the selected periods used in the Period Filter.
All scheduling functionality using the buttons at the bottom of the board will continue to function the Period View option.
Scheduling Options ↑
Below are the Scheduling Options available. These options are also available on the Schedule All Students function under the Scheduling Process node.
NOTE: The first column of the Scheduling Options (Schedule Alternates, etc.) will all be ignored when using the Find Best Period feature because they are not used by the function.
- Schedule Alternates: If an alternate class was entered into a student’s course request and a student has a rejected course, the program will attempt to schedule the student into the alternate class.
- Ignore Class Maximums: All students requesting a class will be scheduled into the class, regardless of the maximum number of students set for the section.
- Include Inactive Students: Inactive students will be included when scheduling classes. Pre-enrolled students tagged '*' (asterisk) will automatically be included, even without this option selected.
- Prevent Gaps in Schedule: Will attempt to schedule every student into the tightest period range possible.
- Ignore Group Codes: This option will ignore any grouping/teaming that may be in place when scheduling.
- Balance Academic Weight: Uses the CRS.AC (Academic Weight) field to ensure academic classes are balanced across all 4x4 terms. Using this option may result in a higher number of rejects.
- Grade Sort/Student Sort: The default for scheduling students is alphabetically, without regard to grade level. To schedule by grade level, select Schedule Low to High or Schedule High to Low. Select Reverse Alpha to schedule backwards alphabetically. To schedule without regard to name select Randomly.
- The Find Best Period feature will also honor these options as selected. More information on this feature below.
Once any new selections are made, click Save and Reload.
Color Codes ↑
Colors can be assigned to up to 10 different departments.
Click on any of the color bands to display the list department codes. Select a department for that color.
To assign a different color to the Department, click the paintbrush icon on the color band to select the color of your choice. Click Save and Reload to save your changes.
Scheduling Statistics ↑
If Scheduling has been run from the SMS Board, the Scheduling Statistics tab displays the results of the last scheduling run.
Display Information for a Selected Staff Member and Flex Period ↑
To display more information for a particular Flex Period and Staff member, click the selected section for the teacher. Detailed information will display at the top of the form.
NOTE: When scheduling for current year, no changes are allowed to any SMS record if the section number also exists in MST. If Save, Move, or Drop are used, an error will display. This also applies to the Crs Changes feature.
Change Class Data ↑
To change data on an existing class in the Scheduling Master Schedule, click the desired class and the class will be display in grey. The class information will display at the top of the form. Change any necessary information for this class and click the Save button. The Teacher field is read-only. Changing a teacher is currently only available on the Scheduling Master page or by using the Crs Changes button.
Flex Periods and Class Calendars will display values according to the records set up in their respective pages. Changes can be made to each section by making a selection in the drop-down and clicking on the Save button.
If the Scheduling Setup option "Use Flex Scheduling for Next Year" is selected, Class Calendars will contain dates previously set up for the next Academic Year.
If the Scheduling Setup option "Scheduling students into classes for the current school year" is selected, the Flex Periods and Class Calendar records assigned to the current Academic Year will display.
For complete information on setting up Flex Periods or Class Calendars please click on the links for each topic.
Add a Class ↑
To add a class to the Scheduling Master Schedule, click on grid of the desired Teacher and the row will highlighted in yellow. Click the Add Class button at the bottom of the form.
A message will display verifying that the teacher selected will be added to the Scheduling Master Schedule. Click OK to complete the Add.
At the top of the form, a section number will be assigned and the Flex Period drop-down will highlight. Change any necessary information for this class and click Save.
The class will be added to the teacher and in the time-slot according to the Flex Period selected in the drop-down. If another section is added to the same teacher and Flex Period, it will display under the first section.
Move a Class ↑
To move a class in the Scheduling Master Schedule, click on the selected class to highlight which highlights with a red border. Click the Move Class button at the bottom of the form.
Notice that the Cancel Move button is now displayed to allow you to cancel the move if needed.
Click on the row for the teacher to which the class is to be moved. The class will be moved and will display in the same Flex Period with the new teacher.
A second method of moving a class is a simple drag and drop. Click and hold the section with the mouse and drag it to the desired teacher's row. The section will move upon releasing the mouse button.
NOTE: It is recommended that sections only have Primary Teachers assigned prior to moving using the Flex SMS Board. Moving sections with non-primary teachers also assigned will cause those staff members to be deleted from the Section Staff record leaving only the Primary Teacher.
Copy a Class ↑
To copy a class in the Scheduling Master Schedule, click on the selected class. Click the Copy Class button at the bottom of the form.
Notice that the Cancel Copy button is now displayed to allow you to cancel the copy if needed.
Click on the row for the teacher to which the class is to be copied. The class will be copied and will display in the same Flex Period with the new teacher.
Drop a Class ↑
To drop a class from the Scheduling Master Schedule, click on the selected class. Click the Drop Class button at the bottom of the form.
If there are students scheduled in the class, the following message will display. To continue with the delete, click Yes. To cancel the delete, click No.
Clicking Yes will display the following message. It is important to note that clicking Yes again will delete the students' course requests for this course and delete the section from the Scheduling Master Schedule. Clicking No will still delete the section from the Scheduling Master Schedule and drop the students from the section, but it will not delete the students' course requests.
Class List ↑
To display a listing of students in a class, click on the selected class. Click the List Stus button at the bottom of the form.
The following report will be generated with all students currently scheduled into the selected class.
SMS Builder ↑
The SMS Builder button will display the Interactive Scheduling Master Schedule Builder. This form allows you to add one or more sections of a selected course. To begin, click the SMS Builder button at the bottom of the page.
The SMS Builder popup will be displayed:
To add sections for a course, enter a course number or title in the Select a Course field in Area 1.
Once the course has been selected in Area 1, the number of course requests for this course will display by grade on the right.
Area 2 will now display all of the scheduling conflicts by term for each Flex Period. To display the conflict details, click the cell for the Period and Term.
The following table will display with all potential conflicts for this course in the selected period and term.
In Area 3 the number of sections to be added can be entered for each period. As each number is added the information for the Flex Period will display in Area 4. In the example below one section will be added in Flex Period NY1 and two sections will be added in Flex Period NY2. Area 4 now displays a line to enter information for each new section.
To set up All sections with the same data, enter the information in Area 4 on the top line with the period identification of All. As information is entered, the lines below will now display the same information.
Note: Entering the Staff name or Staff ID will not auto-populate the associated Room and Max values since the teacher information is coming from the Staff page (STF).
To set up each section differently, enter the information in Area 4 for each section in each period.
After all section information has been entered, click the Add Sections button and the sections will be added to the Scheduling Master Schedule Board. Click the Reset button to clear the form for new data entry, or click Exit to close the form.
Find Best Period ↑
After a section on the Flex SMS Board is selected, if the Find Best Period button is pressed, the process will "virtually" move the selected section to each period in turn. As the section is "virtually" moved, scheduling will be conducted and the number of students with incomplete schedules (one or more sections have a conflict) will be tallied and displayed, by period.
NOTE: There is no guarantee that Find Best Period will give a different result for a particular section. However, it should be easy to find a section that has at least one period with different results.
Click on a section to select it and press Find Best Period:
As the process is running, the Incomplete Schedules column is updated and a Status message is provided:
NOTE: The first column of the Scheduling Options at the top of the page (Schedule Alternates, etc.) will all be ignored because they are not appropriate for Find Best Period. However, the selected Grade Sort/Student Sort options will be honored when using the Find Best Period function.
When the process is finished, all available Flex Periods will display a Status of Analysis Complete and the tallies can be compared. From the period range when the course could possibly be offered, the period with the fewest number of Incomplete Schedules is the best period for the section, based solely on how many students would have complete schedules, if the section were moved to that period.
In the example below, the school offers sections during 1st - 7th periods. If the selected section were moved to 1st period, the fewest number of students (642) would have incomplete schedules. If no other factor prevents the move, the section should be moved and students rescheduled.
Rejected Courses ↑
After running the scheduler, the Rejected Courses can be displayed. Click the Rejected Courses button at the bottom of the Scheduling Master Schedule Board.
The following table will display courses that have rejects. Clicking any button in the SMS column will display all of the sections for the selected course. The Total column will display the total number of student rejects. Clicking any button in the STU column will display a list of rejected students for the selected course. The columns to the right will show the number of rejected students, broken down by the reject reason.
In the example below, the SMS button was selected for course 0019 - Adv Dance. The sections for Adv Dance are displayed in the table.
The report also shows that there are 3 students rejected from Adv Dance. To view a list of the students, click the STU button.
To delete a student’s course request, click the remove button.
Course Changes ↑
To change section information for a specific course, click on the selected class and a red border will display. Then, click the Crs Changes button at the bottom of the form.
The following table will display with all sections for this course.
Changes can be made for each individual section by entering the change in the selected field. These changes will be saved immediately; there is no Save button!
To make a change to all sections displayed, enter the information on the bottom line, then click Change All.
In the example below, the maximum class size will be changed to 28 for all sections of course 0646– Adv Algebra CP.
A message will display verifying the change. Click OK to continue.
A message will display indicating the Scheduling Master Schedule Board has been updated with this change. Click OK.
Rejected Students ↑
To view a list of rejected students, click on a class to select it. Then, click the Rejected Stus button at the bottom of the form.
A popup will display listing the students who have been rejected for the selected course.
Schedule All Students ↑
Select the Scheduling Options tab at the top of the form. Verify that all options have been correctly selected.
Click the Schedule Students button at the bottom of the form.
The following prompt will display. Click YES to proceed or NO to cancel.
A Please Wait message will display while the scheduler is running.
When the scheduler has completed, the following message will display.
Select the Scheduling Statistics tab at the top of the form to display the scheduling statistics.
If mass scheduling of students has been disabled, the following error message will display:
Mass scheduling of students can be disabled/enabled on the Schedule All Students page. Admin permissions to SMS are required to disable/enable mass scheduling of students.
To Backup the scheduling tables or to Restore the scheduling tables to a previous backup, click the Backup/Restore button at the bottom of the form.
The Backup and Restore Scheduling Results page will be displayed.
Click Backup Current Scheduling Tables (SSS and SMS and related tables) to display the Backup Settings form. Enter a Description for your backup and a Comment if you choose. Click OK to save your backup, or click Cancel to stop the process.
The backup will include the Flex Scheduling table for Section Staff (SSM)
The following confirmation message will display. Clicking OK will complete the process.
The Backup will now display in the list.
To Restore a previously saved backup, click on the selected backup from the list. The backup will highlight. Then, click Restore SSS and SMS tables from Selected Backup.
The following confirmation message will display. Click OK to continue. An email will be sent to you when the process is complete.
To Delete one of the saved Scheduling Backups, click on the backup to be deleted. It will now be highlighted. Then, click Delete Selected Backup.
The following confirmation will display. Click OK if you wish to continue.
Print Scheduling Master Schedule Board ↑
Click the Print button at the bottom of the form to print the Scheduling Master Schedule Board.
The Report Options will display. Select the Report Format, Report Delivery, Start Time, and whether to Print Legal Size. Then, click Run Report.
For Flex Scheduling schools, the report can only print up to 10 Flex periods as noted with the message on the options page. If a time later in the day is not printed, select a Start Time later than the default to capture a late time.
Note: The Scheduling Master Board report will not honor the selected periods used in the Period Filter.
The following is an example of the Scheduling Master Schedule Board printed in PDF format on Letter Size paper.