I rarely find anything that is truly web friendly on a phone. (i)pads are different. I usually end up requesting the desktop site for most that auto detect.
I must say i prefer apps, but it depends on the purpose i suppose. Just logging in to a site could be a pain, whereas the app is easier to tie to a person.
Groupcall are also bringing out a parent reports app soon.
It will be interesting to see how these 2 apps compare. Its a great idea.
TASC insight also runs quite well on an ipad, not tried it on an iPhone yet though.
Development continues apace. Attached are a few timetable screens. It will show the current week and next week timetable. Students will see their own, parents will see their child(s). Staff will see their own as well. Due to the limited screen real estate it will be a scrollable list of days/sessions rather than the traditional table. It’s easier to reliably get a good look and feel on a list than a table across everything from an “ancient” Android phone to a modern Phablet.
Attachment 22144 Attachment 22145
Interested to get people’s opinions on whether it’s valuable to show the session and room code (show in screen shot one, not in the second). We know we need to change the teacher name to not show full first name, unfortunately the name comes from the MIS as a single string which is a pain. :confused: Any other layout thoughts appreciated.
The timetable data pulled through is for real from SIMS which is a nice milestone ticked off.
The developers are giving all the Schoolcomms staff access to early versions through TestFlight soon. The plan is to have something reliable for showing off at BETT so that means getting all our staff to try and break it between now and then.
Break it....that sounds like a challenge for us! Great looking project, look forward to seeing it live
Perhaps a demo site with logins sent to carefully selected individuals to test break and report back :)
If you wanted to be a "parent" in one of our test schools we could probably do that by the end of next week. You would be able to download the IOS app and have a bit of a play at least.
Originally Posted by GREED
Because of the way Apple locks down the app store, apps in development are rolled out using a thing called TestFlight - basically we have to compile the individual test phones into the application. So if you wanted to do this we would need your email address, mobile phone number, and you would need to install TestFlight on your phone and give us your device ID. Anyone still interested can PM me.
As we get further in to development of the website version we can do something easier.
Alternatively you can wait until it's finished - we do free fully functional trials of all our products to any school any time :D
Whatever is easy and helpful! Keep us posted. I'm sure if you develop a standard and easy way for us lot to help test, even if it is as involved as testflight, there are many here who would take that on... but ultimately only if you find it useful.
Will your Android app be better than Groupcall's? Their app isn't very nice to look at or use. :(
Originally Posted by Schoolcomms
FWIW, as of last month Windows Phone now accounts for 10.2% of the market in the UK.
Originally Posted by Schoolcomms
Do you mean their parent app, or Emerge? I thought the Android Emerge was the same as iDevice and i really liked that.
Originally Posted by Arthur
Have yet to see the GC parent app....
Development has progressed really well over the Christmas/New Year break (our development team don't seem to believe in holidays). Below are a few of the latest screen shots from the app:
Attachment 22281 Attachment 22282
(sorry for the weird student and school names, it's all test data)
As you can see we have now got all the notifications working to show when there are new things to look at. We think this is really important - most parents aren't going to bother going in to check for updates every day, so using push notifications to alert them to when they should go and look is a nice use of the smartphone platform.
On the back end - all the data is now syncing from SIMS (via our servers) successfully which is great. Not the sexiest part of the project, but vital to get robust and efficient.
The IOS version is nearing completion, we have motored on with it to make sure we have something good to show at BETT. Pretty much just Payments to do (Payments is always hard work).
We have this on most of our staff's phones and they are giving it a hammering. If anyone else wants to have a go, PM me with your email address and phone number and I will send you instructions on how to get the test version. Would be great to get your feedback.
With work on the App UI progressing well, we are starting to look the school administrator side. What configuration options would you need to make this work for your school?
This is what we have come up with at the moment:
• For each functionality area you will be able to switch it on or off for any of Parents, Students and Staff (if you switch it off it will just show a “not available” message when clicked on in the menu)
• For behaviour and achievements you can set the earliest date that you want to show data (in case older data is less good, or inappropriate to show to parents)
There is a “role” field and a number of points for behaviours. You can for example record someone as being a “witness” or “bystander” - not sure if schools would want to share this with parents/student?
We thought that maybe an option to NOT share behaviours that received 0 points?
There are some others that are probably going to have to come shortly after the first release to co-incide with some back-end changes we are making to our e-mail sending services:
• Destination Email address for unexplained absence responses (if not using Schoolcomms messaging to manage attendance)
• Destination Email address for Pupil Premium responses
• Destination Email address for Student Details and About Me changes
Are there any other settings you would like to see?
If you wanted to try the product before buying it are there any other settings you would need?
Just on your bullet points:
1) If functionality is switched off, could it be hidden completely from menu's (or greyed out) rather than saying 'not available' after being clicked on.
2) As well as an earliest date, we'd need a latest date - we don't show today's behaviour, or possibly even yesterdays', to parents in case the year team want to intercept and upgrade/downgrade the behaviour.
3) I think we only show that a behaviour event has taken place, and possibly the number of points - we don't show any detail of the behaviour to parents.
I'd like to make it so parents would not see any comments.
I'd also want to make sure that it wasn't sharing bullying incidents with parents, as those are things we track internally and decide if it is bullying - don't need a parent to see that their child was put down as a victim, when they might not actually be a victim.
We actually use 0BP for a couple things that we give detentions for, that I would want parents to be aware of too.
Not sure if you're covering it, but I don't think I'd want parents reading the comments on behaviour incidents, as some of our staff put some inappropriate comments in there at times (not too mention spelling/grammar errors)
While I agree it is important to have the option, is that not a user training issue? Not using a potentially very useful communication tool because teachers need to be told what is and is not appropriate to write?
Originally Posted by tombry
But on the flip side, if there's things you need to write, where do you write them if you can't write them in SIMS? Sometimes it's handy to be able to put comments in for other staff, so they're aware, but you wouldn't necessarily want that available online.
Originally Posted by GREED