Bulletin Update

We have made several optimisations on the bulletin page to help speed up its loading, particularly with larger numbers of teacher absences when the bulletin is long and requires a lot of scrolling.

We have also tested version 10 of The Timetabler for the first time. The bulletin feature is slightly different in that you have to click on the print icon to get to the MS word version of the bulletin. Initial testing indicates that the import into MyExtras works correctly as expected.

Seasons Greetings

MyExtras would like to thank you once again for your support in 2019 and wish you and your families all the very best for Christmas and the new year.

Please note that that the end of December (after schools finish) is when we roll over our databases and perform server maintenance. You can import your Semester 1 2020 timetable starting January 1.

We recommend that you “lockdown” teacher logins over the holidays to prevent teachers accidentally generating extras for 2020 under the 2019 timetable. This can be done from Section 16 of your admin panel. Stay tuned & happy holidays!

End of Year “Head Start” Programs

How does your school manage the end of year for Yr.10 and 11 students? In recent years “Step Up” or “Head Start” VCE programs for the following year are becoming more common in the final weeks of Term 4. This is generally considered to be a very positive development for students.

However, we realise that changes of timetable, in addition to overlapping exam supervision rosters, marking, report writing and restless students can make the end of year very stressful for teachers.

This is also particularly so for Daily Organisers who are often the ones left to try and patch the mismatch of timetables, clashes, and oversights in addition to the busy conference period with absent staff.

It is also imperative that the Daily Organiser does their best to make arrangements that are fair for all concerned. Workloads can be highly variable among teaching staff at this time and this can sometimes lead to resentment. Teaching load data can also often be difficult to collate and may not be entirely accurate. The only way around it is to use the data available to you in your calculations and be open and transparent in your organisation. The complexity of this task is high and not all the data is quantitative. You will most likely make oversights and you are not going to keep everyone happy. However, you can do your best to distribute workloads fairly and efficiently and finish the year on a positive note. With everyone working together as a team the job is much easier!

At MyExtras we consider ourselves part of your team. To help, we have been working on the ability to run two Semester 2 timetables at the one time to help with the generation of extras at the end of the year. This would work by selecting a date that the modified end of year timetable would start on, then importing the new “2nd” Semester 2 timetable. This feature is currently being developed and tested and may not be fully ready for 2019.

If you would like to know more, or be involved in testing of this new feature or to comment on this post, please contact us.

https://www.myextras.com.au/contact1/

Timetable Import

We have now built in a reminder to help admins import the correct timetable file into MyExtras – TTable.txt

Yr.12 Farewell 🍀

MyExtras would like to take this opportunity to wish all our schools the very best for their upcoming Yr.12 examinations.

VCE Examination Timetable

https://www.vcaa.vic.edu.au/administration/Key-dates/Pages/VCE-exam-timetable.aspx

The Common Good in the Digital Age

Pope Francis recently addressed a Vatican conference on the use of technology for the “Common Good”. He stated that technological advancement should be in the service of human development, and of the whole person, and for all people.

In our opinion schools have been great leaders in creating such an environment for well over 20 years now. It has been a steep learning curve for many, but teachers generally should be proud of how they have made their classroom environments more interactive and engaging for their students.

Often technological advances, touted to be time savers are actually time wasters. This poses some interesting questions. If they are time savers, how are we using the time we save? If they are time wasters, how can we improve the situation to make the lives for both ourselves and others more enriching and full?

https://time.com/5688191/pope-francis-artificial-intelligence-common-good/

View / edit recent extra

We modified the “View / edit recent extra” function to make it more intuitive for teachers generating or editing extras .

This allows teachers to easily go back and forward in time to check past and future extras for the same class.

These links now appears on the actual extra notice under the homework section (previously they were along the top menu).