to access this module:
|Access attendance menu|
|Access Attendance View menu item|
Teachers will deal with attendance by taking registers. Attendance officers will usually require a more powerful tool, one which allows them to track down absent pupils, query questionable attendance marks, identify trends in attendance and contact parents. This attendance view page is the tool that attendance officers should use for this.
Attendance View should not be used by teachers as no restrictions apply when using attendance view i.e. which attendance codes staff are allowed to use or the ability to overwrite other people's marks.
The attendance view page
You will not see any data when you first come to this page, as you need to select the pupils and date range that you are interested in. First select which pupils' attendance you wish to view. Next click the "Range" button to select the date range you are interested in. Finally click "Refresh".
Attendance marks are colour-coded to make data easier to read. All present marks are green, authorised absence is pink, unauthorised absence is red, late marks are yellow and registers where the pupil is not required to attend are grey.
Please also see the group manager page for information about creating attendance alerts to track attendance for particular pupils or truants.
How to update attendance marks
To update attendance marks, you first need to disable mark protection - this is a feature that stops you overwriting certain attendance marks. To do this, click the "Protect" button on the top toolbar. This will open the mark protection window:
There are three levels of protection which are explained in the window. Typically you will use "No protection" when dealing with attendance marks - choose the desired level of protection. You can also quickly change the level of mark protection by clicking the Escape button (top right) on your keyboard to toggle the different levels of mark protection.
You now need to select the marks that you want to update. See the image below for guidance on selecting marks:
Once you have selected the marks you want to edit, you can right-click to view a list of the available attendance codes. Click on the attendance code you want to use.
Besides updating marks, there are several things you can do from this page. These features can be accessed using the buttons in the top toolbar:
You can add attendance comments if necessary. To do this, first select the marks you want to add comments to. Next click the "Comments" button from the top toolbar. This will open a window where you can enter free text comments, or select comments from the comment bank.
If any of the selected students already have an attendance comment, you will be asked whether you want to overwrite the old comment, or add the new comment to the end of the old comment.
Identifying absentees and applying filters
When looking at attendance data you may find it useful apply filters. This means that you will only see certain pupils i.e. absentees or truants. To do this, click the "Filter" button from the top toolbar - this will open a window showing the available filters for you to use.
Selecting any of these filters will remove some pupils from your page, so that less are left. Each filter works differently so finding the best few for you is useful - try using the different filters to see what data they provide. Some of the more commonly used filters are:
Having a specific code
- You choose an attendance code (or multiple codes). The filter will then show you pupils who have received that attendance code at least once in the date range you selected.
Post registration truants
- This shows you any pupils who were present to AM and went missing at some point later in the day.
Pupils who have not attended school today with no reason 'N'
- This will show you pupils who have been absent for the entire day with N codes
- This will show you pupils who have been absent for the entire day with N codes
There are various 'contact' features that can be used via the Attendance View page. To access these, click the "Contact" button and more options will appear:
- This can be used to query attendance marks. Select an attendance mark that you would like to query and then click the "Notice" button - this will open a window allowing you to send a message to the teacher of the class.
- This button takes you to the external contact page which is used to contact parents. Click here for instructions and information regarding the external contact page.
- This button opens a report showing the contact history between the pupil and the school. This will include any outbound emails, SMS messages or mail merge letters that have been sent via PARS, as well as any phone calls or meetings that have been logged and possibly SMS replies (depending on your configuration).
- This button will open a report showing the home contact details for the pupil that you have selected.
Unexplained absences & SMS replies
After selecting students, a window opens to select the date range of data to be viewed. At the bottom of the window there are options to "Deal with unexplained marks" and "With replies only". "With replies only" can only be selected if "Deal with unexplained marks" is also being used.
The "Deal with unexplained marks" option will filter the attendance view page to show any days where students have had an N code. It also allows larger date ranges to be selected; normally when using attendance view, the maximum date range is one week when viewing more than one student. This restriction is removed when using "Deal with unexplained marks".
If an SMS has been sent from the school, then a blue square will appear next to the student's name. The square will turn red if there is a reply to the SMS. The outbound SMS and any replies can be viewed by clicking on the square.
The "With replies only" option in the date range window will filter the page so that students are only shown if they have both an N code and an SMS reply to deal with.
When viewing SMS replies, there will be an "Action" button that is used to update the pupil's attendance codes. There is also an option to add the SMS reply as a comment to the attendance codes.
Checking mark logs
PARS will keep a log of who entered attendance marks and when. This can be useful if you need to query attendance marks. To do this, single click on the mark you wish to examine. Next click the "History" button from the top toolbar. This will open a window showing you who has updated the attendance mark and when.
You may sometimes see a coloured icon at the top-left of an attendance mark. This shows that the pupil has received multiple attendance marks during that period (from two different classes, not from a teacher giving them one mark then changing it to another in the same class). Common causes for this are:
- Pupils being added as an "unexpected arrival" in a different register to their normally scheduled register.
- Pupils having a future mark entered for a scheduled class (e.g. to record a planned medical appointment) and then being moved from that class into a different one. The mark is still associated with the old class at this point.
- Lesson marks are all recorded with a class_period_id number that identifies the exact lesson period that the group's marks are recorded against. If the group in which the marks are recorded changes (e.g. the teacher is swapped or pupils leave the group) then the class_period_id number may also change as details of the timetable are changed in SIMS. In this case the mark has been recorded with a class_period_id number that is no longer valid.
To see details for the alternate marks - Highlight the cell containing the dotted triangle, then access the 'History' button and then 'Alternative Marks' .
Adding behaviour incidents
If required you can add a behaviour incident to pupils via the Attendance View page. To do this, first select the pupil(s) you wish to give behaviour incidents to. Next click the "Behaviour" button on the top toolbar - this will open the add a behaviour incident window.