Review periods

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PARS can be used to generate student reviews, which are progress or end of term reports sent home to parents. These reports are created by our programmers to your specification free-of-charge. Click here for examples of student reviews which we have created for other schools.

The reviews are generated using two components, the xls stylesheet and the xml datasheet. The stylesheet is designed by our programmers for you. The xml datasheet (called OUTPUT.xml) is generated by PARS on a computer at your school. The two files are mixed together by the PARS Document Converter.

This page is accessed via:
PARS main menu > Grading > Review periods

Adding or editing a review period

To create a new review period, click Add from the top toolbar. You can also select an existing review and click Edit to access the same options.

A window will open where you can configure your new review period. First enter the title for the review (e.g. End of Term report) and an optional description if necessary. You also need to give your review a start date and end date, which should be the start and end of the academic year.

Options

When creating or editing a Review Period, you can click the "..." button next to each year group for more options:

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Setting Effect
Design Which student review design do you want to use. These are imported via the review designer
Previous years Use this if grades from previous school years are to be included. This will slow down the generation of reviews
Allow aged ASM This will include all SIMS ASM grades found for a student regardless of the result set, date range, or when they were entered
Include student photos Tick this option if the review is to contain a photo of the student. The photos are stored in the user's PARS TEMP folder (along with the OUTPUT.XML when the review is generated. There is a preference to delete the contents of this folder when PARS exits
Approved grades You can choose whether the report should use all grades, only those that have been authorised or only those that are not unauthorised. See grade authorisation for more info
Include extra detail You will only need to use this when advised by the PARS helpdesk staff
Use the end date as effective date By default the OUTPUT.XML file will contain data for all classes and subjects attended by each student over the whole date range of the review. With this setting turned on, only the classes/subjects that a student is a member of on the final day of the review will be included
Use the end date as supervisor date This option will set the review's end date as the point in time used to determine which teachers are supervisors of which groups
Generate minimal output.xml Use this if the generation of student reviews is too slow. WARNING: using this means that your reviews cannot contain behaviour or attendance information and may need to be redesigned
For import If you are using a student review to manipulate data then import it back into a grading element, then you need to use this option
Skip PDF This option prevents the student review output being generated as a PDF file

Generating an OUTPUT.xml file

For our programmers to design a report for you, they will need a file generated from your PARS system. This will include information about pupils' grades and classes. To generate an OUTPUT.xml file you must have at least one Review Period created. If you do not have any Review Periods, visit the Default slip page for further instructions.

The PARS Document Converter must also be running to generate OUTPUT.xml files. See the Document Converter page for further information about this.

To generate an OUTPUT.xml select a Review Period then click the XML button from the top toolbar. This will open a window where you can select pupils - select a few pupils (5 to 10) who have grades recorded in the system. This will download a file to your computer that you can send to the TASC online help desk.

Generating your reports

There are two buttons at the top of the page to generate your student reviews. The "Generate" button allows you to generate a student review for any selection of pupils, whereas the "Generate class" button lets you generate student reviews for whole classes/groups.

The PARS Document Converter must also be running to generate reports. See the Document Converter page for further information about this.

Once you have selected the students/group you will be taken to a new screen which will show the progress of the reports generating. When the reports have finished generating you can use the Download all button on the top toolbar to download all of the reports at once. Alternatively if you used the Generate button (as opposed to Generate Class) to create your reports then you can use the Download button next to each report to download only that document.

Uploading copies to SIMS Linked Documents

The options available when uploading documents to SIMS

If you used the Generate button (as opposed to Generate Class) to create your reports then you will now have the option to upload copies to the Linked Documents section of SIMS. Click the SIMS button next to an individual report to upload that specific report to SIMS, or click the Upload button on the top toolbar to upload all reeports to SIMS.

You can change the notes and summary that will be used in SIMS if required. There are also drop-down options for you to select the status of the document (Public is recommended) and Type. If you have previously uploaded the same report to SIMS, then you may want to select the "Overwrite" option which will replace the old upload. If you also select "Update uploaded date" then the review you upload will use today's date as its upload date, not the date of the old review.