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MIS Systems Thread, Fire Drills in Technical; The big question to ask if you are relying on electronic information for fire drills is: What do you do ...
  1. #16

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    The big question to ask if you are relying on electronic information for fire drills is:

    What do you do if the printer jams/runs of paper/runs out of toner/blows up/has no power?

    I don't know about others, but this is a relatively common occurrence for me!

  2. #17

    matt40k's Avatar
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    Doesn't matter how it's entered into SIMS, by say 9:30, you should have a AM mark for every pupil on roll. Then you can produce a report of who's absence from SIMS. If you're taking all day to entered the AM mark because teachers can't use lesson monitor and the bit of paper isn't getting to the office quickly, then you've got a problem.

    The tutor lists is the pupil on roll at the school. The absense report (from SIMS) is the who's not here today. Generally you have one person, or one person per group, that is response for attendance, so they will print the absence report at say 9:30, if anything changes between then and the end of the day - the person who updates SIMS also informs them. Just a question of process.
    @Ecclesbury - You won't me standing next to a printer whilst the fire bells going off - don't fancy being involve in any toner fire!!
    Last edited by matt40k; 15th January 2013 at 03:20 PM.

  3. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ecclesbury View Post
    What do you do if the printer jams/runs of paper/runs out of toner/blows up/has no power?
    For us, depending on timing between end of registers and the alarm going off...

    (in order)
    1) Attempt to fix printer
    2) Print to another printer (should be (1), but I'd have to suggest it before any one does)
    3) Write out the absence list by hand
    4) Hope for the best - the nice firemen will get to the missing student(s) before they burn, won't they?

    As someone said above, doesn't matter how much planning we do, there'll always be holes. At the end of the day it's an exercise in getting people out the building as quickly and safely as possible, accounting for whose out the building is very secondary.

  4. #19
    Gongalong's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ecclesbury View Post
    What do you do if the printer jams/runs of paper/runs out of toner/blows up/has no power?
    We have two printers in the office, and I believe in the past they have printed to both printers anyway.

    I have a feeling they might keep a paper register of all students, that's roughly up-to-date, for emergencies.
    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    Doesn't matter how it's entered into SIMS, by say 9:30, you should have a AM mark for every pupil on roll. Then you can produce a report of who's absence from SIMS.
    Agreed. This is actually sounding like the best idea to get around the time-to-produce issue.
    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    If you're taking all day to entered the AM mark because teachers can't use lesson monitor and the bit of paper isn't getting to the office quickly, then you've got a problem.
    Certainly not all day. The big complaint is just response time with Lesson Monitor, which takes a varying degree of time to open up Edit Marks, dependent on how many records are selected e.g. tutor group, year, whole school.
    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    The tutor lists is the pupil on roll at the school. The absense report (from SIMS) is the who's not here today. Generally you have one person, or one person per group, that is response for attendance, so they will print the absence report at say 9:30, if anything changes between then and the end of the day - the person who updates SIMS also informs them. Just a question of process.
    An absence report also sounds better, as it's presumably shorter. This could then be contrasted with current tutor registers.

  5. #20

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    P.s. Knowing how our senior management's mind works I would have said that they were less concerned with what the fire brigade needed and more concerned with how Mrs Bloggs would react if she found out that little Joey had been locked in a toilet cublicle during a fire drill and the school never realised! "WHAT IF THAT HAD BEEN A REAL FIRE!"

    Maybe that should be the ultimate fire drill. Take a student into confidence and ask them to ask to go to the toilet just before a fire drill, and then hide in there! See how long the system takes to identify them as missing and see what the reaction is! Sneaky sneaky.
    Last edited by Ecclesbury; 15th January 2013 at 03:47 PM.

  6. #21

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    Easy here, because in our (infant) school the kids essentially stay in the same classroomwith the same teacher all day. Each class has a laminated list by the exit door (every classroom has a door to the outside and all ground floor). After register (on SIMS) they write the number of children present in their class that day and write "A" next to those absent. If another member of staff takes a child out of class, they are supposed to put their initials on the form.

    The most useful bit of this (having asked the teachers) is the number to do a quick headcount as soon as they get to the muster point, so they know whether to start looking for anyone.

    IMHO admin staff should be leaving the building straight away, not printing anything out at the point the fire alarms have gone.

  7. #22
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    jmak: I agree re. printing. The standard advice that I'm used to is "get out immediately". Where I used to work we had a badge system that logged who was inside the building, and during a drill the fire alarm was connected to the system, and would immediately print the list on a fast local printer.

  8. #23

    GREED's Avatar
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    What about Groupcall Emerge, which cashes the data so there is no 'internet is down' sillyness, you have access to the information you need, just pick the ipad up on the way out...

    ...or in fact any web accessible MIS would give you the same facility... *cough*

    Let alone scenarios of printing every register every day just in case, the business of sitting there waiting to print a set of registers IF IT WERE A REAL FIRE is stupid!

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  10. #24

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    We have an autoit script to run + print the sims reports and print the staff and sixth form attendance lists from a separate system. This prints to two printers on the other side of the school near the assembly area. The printers are in safes just inside the door (which is clear so you can see if its safe to enter or not). By the time the office staff have walked round, it usually has printed (or failed).

    The system is checked each term, and the printers are refilled with paper each time someone runs the script.

    The backup plan is sims lists printed out every month or half term or so.

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    Gongalong (16th January 2013)

  12. #25

    vikpaw's Avatar
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    The whole print the list when the bell rings is ludicrous. That is built for a fire drill. Not a fire! I think our printing in advance is bad enough, but actually doing it when the bell goes is mad

    Quote Originally Posted by Ecclesbury View Post
    P.s. Knowing how our senior management's mind works I would have said that they were less concerned with what the fire brigade needed and more concerned with how Mrs Bloggs would react if she found out that little Joey had been locked in a toilet cublicle during a fire drill and the school never realised! "WHAT IF THAT HAD BEEN A REAL FIRE!"

    Maybe that should be the ultimate fire drill. Take a student into confidence and ask them to ask to go to the toilet just before a fire drill, and then hide in there! See how long the system takes to identify them as missing and see what the reaction is! Sneaky sneaky.
    What the fire people want to know is have you swept the building, so joey bloggs should be found.
    I actually did what you suggest at a previous school, i took either one or two students and asked them to be in my office before hand, then we went down to our muster point together. [This was a planned drill]

    What did we find?

    Staff were wondering down with their classes, coffee mugs in hand, avoiding the nearest fire escape because the one 3 metres further down was on the right side of the building!
    Was the student missed? Not on your nelly. Wasn't even noticed. True it was a sixth former, but i'm sure Mrs Bloggs wants her kids alive no matter what their age.
    I wasn't really sure what to say to the poor kid, and luckily they didn't do anything about it.
    Nothing came of it, so i gave up, and started ranting on edugeek.

    WARNING :don't try this at your school:

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  14. #26
    Kyle's Avatar
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    We've got Emerge an dare currently thinking of doing something around this. We too print register after AM reg ready for a fire drill but what happens if you need contact details in an emergency. Emerge will give you all this but woudl love to find out if anyone is using it in any way for the Fire drill?
    ?

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  16. #27
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    I'm curious about Emerge. We currently have SIMS standalone, subscribed through the LA, so not sure whether this is an additional charge. Realistically though to make the registration quick and efficient it would probably require that every tutor had a tablet, and I can't see us having any budget for that, aside from providing wifi at the muster point.

  17. #28

    vikpaw's Avatar
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    Emerge is an extra charge. Per device. Or you can get a site licence. It doesn't have to be on tablet, it could be an iPhone or Android phone.
    It's really easy to configure and lock out to protect the data. I recently checked the offline mode and you can set a time out period down to the minute after which it deactivates.

    Bromcom works offline, for taking registers. I also recently found out that CHQ the SIMS partner for clubs management has apps and similar facilities for registration too.

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    Gongalong (19th January 2013)

  19. #29
    staningrimsby's Avatar
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    We are looking at using SIMS Emerge as well for fire drills etc, have been told by Capita that we can have a 30 day evaluation of the software
    so will look at implementing it around the next time there is a school trip as a member of staff can also use the ipad to call up personal data on the pupils away from the school as well.

    We did ask for a quote from Capita which came back at around £3000 for a site licence per year, not cheap but if it does what it claims then it will be worth the money.

  20. #30

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    Emerge will do the required stuff i think although you are in the same prediciment if somebody doesn't download the data to the device on the days that the fire alarm goes off i think all hell will ensue.

    Personally i don't think a technical way of doing this is efficient (apart from saving paper etc). I would setup a few batch files which can be saved on the admin staffs machines which are just command reporter scripts to generate all registers to be printed. This could even be tagged to the taskbar so as soon as the admin team hear the alarm quick click wait for it to churn out the report and hit print, have a copier/printer next to the fire escape.

    although again you have to hope the admin staffs machines have a data connection at the time of the alarm going off...



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