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Educational Software Thread, Report Master - Carn in Technical; Just wondering if anyone else had any experiances with this Reporting software and had any views and opinions of it....
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    HMCTech's Avatar
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    Report Master - Carn

    Just wondering if anyone else had any experiances with this Reporting software and had any views and opinions of it.

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    Oh yea loads.

    Comment banks, you may be lucky but I ended up writing or at least editing them for nearly every department purely because the staff can't do it properly. If you have say 50 seperate sentences for science then you will have to manually go into each one and thats just for one subject.
    Teachers cannot share classes in Reportmaster so you have to set up a new class for them or get them to write half the reports and give them to the staff that is on the report.
    The remote side of it does work where you write at home then sync the reports in school but again staff will struggle with it and I've seen many lose their reports and then come to you for miracles.
    Staff cannot access the same reports at the same time, you get locked out.
    You have to send the attendance and exam results off to Carn so they can be packaged and sent back to you to import into Reportmaster. Scary if you have less then a week before the deadline for printing and then you must ensure everybody is out of Reportmaster to do the import. Very hard near the deadline.
    It's difficult to delete staff or classes if Reportmaster thinks they are still in use when they're not.
    It is a little prone to errors, some serious some are not, again you must send the errors to Carn for fixing, sometimes this deletes reports already written.
    I will say the support is pretty good and they do get back to you fairly quickly.
    If it was more reliable I would say its OK but it's not flexible or integrated enough and there's too many little bugs that crop up and its always at the time when the reports need to be printed.

    Any use?

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    We use ReportMaster. It does the job but the teaching staff aleways seem to moan about it (I know many prefer to write their reports in Word and copy & paste into ReportMaster!).

    There is no integration with anything else but all that importing and exporting isn't done by me so I couldn't comment on that side of things.

    I have heard rumours that we may not be using it too much longer.

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    Thanks guys, you've just given me another program not to bother looking at... I'm researching this area too at the moment for primary (well it's report writing season at the moment, and it's a great way to waste time!) Every year I seach, and every year I fail!
    Why can't anyone write a decent report-writing program?
    I want one that is:
    Intuative, flexible, and easy to use.
    Has a rohbust synchronisation mechanisim (to allow transfer between school and home either via a transport file or directly with the server). I have a SQL server runnning on my machine and when I log off I get the option to synchronise a database... never tried it but it must be possible.
    Can cope with different teachers writing different parts of the reports for the same child. IF there are conflicts, it must be possible to make it cope (like windows does when 2 people edit the same file).
    I actually don't care about 1000s of ready-made statements, but I would like to be able to easily add my own.

    Jeez... if I wasn't such a rubbish (EDIT: and lazy) programmer I'd write my own!

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    I think AIM High might suit your requirements exactly but its based on Secondary Curriculum! Alternatively have you looked at Sims.net Profiles which does the same thing - we moved to it so that we can centralise everything to Sims.net.

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    One site I support used to use ReportMaster, but due to the age of the application and the way it saves reports it was extremely unreliable with staff losing hours of work.

    In the end I created an A5 booklet in MS Word. It's reliable and I've had no support calls.

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    HMCTech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Outpost View Post
    Oh yea loads.

    Comment banks, you may be lucky but I ended up writing or at least editing them for nearly every department purely because the staff can't do it properly. If you have say 50 seperate sentences for science then you will have to manually go into each one and thats just for one subject.
    Teachers cannot share classes in Reportmaster so you have to set up a new class for them or get them to write half the reports and give them to the staff that is on the report.
    The remote side of it does work where you write at home then sync the reports in school but again staff will struggle with it and I've seen many lose their reports and then come to you for miracles.
    Staff cannot access the same reports at the same time, you get locked out.
    You have to send the attendance and exam results off to Carn so they can be packaged and sent back to you to import into Reportmaster. Scary if you have less then a week before the deadline for printing and then you must ensure everybody is out of Reportmaster to do the import. Very hard near the deadline.
    It's difficult to delete staff or classes if Reportmaster thinks they are still in use when they're not.
    It is a little prone to errors, some serious some are not, again you must send the errors to Carn for fixing, sometimes this deletes reports already written.
    I will say the support is pretty good and they do get back to you fairly quickly.
    If it was more reliable I would say its OK but it's not flexible or integrated enough and there's too many little bugs that crop up and its always at the time when the reports need to be printed.

    Any use?
    Yes thats very helpfull thank you.

    Our Deputy went ahead and bought this software 8 months ago and the first reporting session has just been done... and it was a very big struggle. I found errors everywhere, everytime I went to carn for helo they sent me a fix straight away and I mean straight away. I have started to think that some errors are left in intentionally so that the annual support subscription is seen as neccesary. Cynical I know but I have had to fix about 16 errors and some of the less important errors I have just left in.

    After doing only a single year group I have come to the conclusion that this software needs to be scrapped. However difficult it is to do during a full report session.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Outpost View Post
    Oh yea loads.

    Comment banks, you may be lucky but I ended up writing or at least editing them for nearly every department purely because the staff can't do it properly. If you have say 50 seperate sentences for science then you will have to manually go into each one and thats just for one subject.
    Teachers cannot share classes in Reportmaster so you have to set up a new class for them or get them to write half the reports and give them to the staff that is on the report.
    The remote side of it does work where you write at home then sync the reports in school but again staff will struggle with it and I've seen many lose their reports and then come to you for miracles.
    Staff cannot access the same reports at the same time, you get locked out.
    You have to send the attendance and exam results off to Carn so they can be packaged and sent back to you to import into Reportmaster. Scary if you have less then a week before the deadline for printing and then you must ensure everybody is out of Reportmaster to do the import. Very hard near the deadline.
    It's difficult to delete staff or classes if Reportmaster thinks they are still in use when they're not.
    It is a little prone to errors, some serious some are not, again you must send the errors to Carn for fixing, sometimes this deletes reports already written.
    I will say the support is pretty good and they do get back to you fairly quickly.
    If it was more reliable I would say its OK but it's not flexible or integrated enough and there's too many little bugs that crop up and its always at the time when the reports need to be printed.

    Any use?
    Pretty much the same experience I have had with this software.

    Reportmaster 3 is due out soon (if not already) and we are moving over to that during the summer. Whether it will be any better or worse than reportmaster2 I don't know.

    I emailed Carn and asked them what they were doing about BECTA's directive that ALL schools should have online reporting by 2010, they say they are working on it apparently.

    Wouldnt it be nice to have a simple web-based report system (so staff can do reports remotely and parents can read them anywhere, anytime) that hooks nicely into your MIS? Too much to ask?

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