Scheduling Configuration: Alternate Schedules

Overview

It is common for schools to have certain school days run on alternate schedules. For example, a school might shorten its classes on a particular day to make time for a special assembly or a half-day. This article explains how to configure alternate schedules at your school so that attendance, student/teacher locations, and resource scheduling are accurate.

Alternate Schedules Overview

The main use of alternate schedules is to redefine the times that particular blocks meet on particular days. For every school day, Veracross has clearly defined meeting times which control many functions in the system, e.g. attendance. These times are set up and governed by the block records in your system. However, for days when the meeting times vary from their normal schedule, it is necessary to apply special schedules to configure the times correctly.

To accomplish this, an “alternate schedule” needs to be created and defined. This record allows you to specify a different schedule for a particular day. Just like your normal block record, your alternate schedule record will need to have its start and end times specified for each block.

Once the alternate schedules have been defined, the final step is to apply these alternate schedules to the actual school days where they will be used (e.g., on Oct 15 for a half day of school). See below for instructions to set up and use your alternate schedules.

Please note:

  • If a block is not defined in an alternate schedule, Veracross will assume the classes that would have met during that block will not meet on the alternate day.

Creating an Alternate Schedule

To set up an alternate block schedule for a rotation day, navigate to the System homepage, hover over the “Add” button, and select “Alternate Block Schedules.”

On the alternate block schedule detail screen, enter a description for your alternate schedule (e.g. “Friday Assembly”).  Enter any Blocks that should meet on this day along with their alternate Start and End Times.

Using an Alternate Schedule

To set an alternate day to meet on a given calendar day, navigate to the “Rotation Calendar” on the system homepage and click on the calendar day you want to change. After the Calendar Day is open, click on the Rotations tab (click the button in the top left to display the tabs). From here you can assign a “Block Schedule” to that rotation day and click “Update Calendar Day.”  If no block schedule is selected, the rotation day will run the default schedule configured.

Understanding Alternate Schedule Logic

If a class normally meets on the rotation day to which the alternate schedule is applied (regardless of the Override Rotation Day flag):

  • It must meet in the blocks during which it is normally scheduled to meet on that rotation day, though the times of those blocks may be adjusted as desired.

Example:

  1. An alternate schedule is applied to Monday.
  2. Class APCalc normally meets twice on Monday, in Blocks C and D, but only once a day for the rest of the week, in Block F.
  3. If APCalc should only meet once on the alternate schedule day, either Block C or D must be included in the alternate schedule, but not both.
  4. APCalc will not be expected to meet during Block F on the alternate day even if Block F is also included in the alternate schedule, since the class’ schedule for that day takes precedence with regards to the blocks during which it will meet. Please note that this is regardless of whether Block C or D is included. Even if neither is included, APCalc will still not be expected to meet during Block F. This allows you to include Block F for the sake of other classes without causing APCalc to meet too many times.

If both the class and the included block do not normally meet on the rotation day to which the alternate schedule is applied, but the class does meet in that block on another day (regardless of the Override Rotation Day flag):

  1. It will meet in all blocks that it has schedules for, regardless of the day set on those schedules.
  2. It cannot be excluded from meeting in any included block.

Example:

  1. An alternate schedule is applied to Day 7.
  2. Class HonEng normally meets in Block A on Days 2, 4, and 6 and Block F on Days 3 and 5.
  3. If Block A is included in the alternate schedule but Block F is not, the class will meet during Block A for the alternate schedule day, even though it does not normally meet on Day 7.
  4. If Block F is also included in the alternate schedule, HonEng will be expected to meet during Block F on the alternate day, as well as Block A.

If the included block normally meets on the rotation day to which the alternate schedule is applied and the class meets in the included block on another day but not during the included block on that rotation day, then the flag must be enabled in order for the class to meet on that day:

  1. It will meet in all blocks that it has schedules for, regardless of the day set on those schedules.
  2. It cannot be excluded from meeting in any included block.

Example:

  1. An alternate schedule is applied to Day 5.
  2. Class 3DDesign normally meets in Block C on Days 2, 4, and 6.
  3. The “Override Rotation Day” flag is set on the alternate schedule.
  4. If Block C is included in the alternate schedule, 3DDesign will be expected to meet, even though it doesn’t normally meet on Day 5. If the flag was not set, it would not be expected to meet.
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