Scheduler Quick Start Guide

Overview

The Veracross Scheduler is a separate module that is used to help schools build their schedules for the upcoming school year. In order for schools who have purchased the Scheduler to begin their scheduling process, some initial configuration must be done. If you have not yet purchased the Veracross Scheduler, but are interested in doing so, please speak with your account manager.

If you have been through at least one season of using the Veracross Scheduler, this article will help you "re-initialize" so that you can build your schedules for next year. We recommend reading through this article, watching the accompanying videos, and reading the recommended documentation well ahead of time so you can re-familiarize yourself with the process. 

There are 3 main phases of configuration to complete before you can build your schedule using the Veracross Scheduler. 

Below are the checklist items to be completed within each category of configuration:

PhaseSteps
Course Requests
  1. Set the "Scheduler School Year" system parameter to the upcoming school year.
  2. Determine which courses that are available for request.
  3. Add course requests.
Scheduler Prep
  1. Copy classes to next year (the same year set by the Scheduler School Year). 
  2. Determine Scheduler Configurations: Configure Subject, Courses, Classes, Blocks, and Rooms.
  3. Reset Scheduler for next school year
Set Constraints
  1. Set up your Global Constraints, Subject Room Constraints, Course Constraints, Class Constraints, Teacher Constraints, and Student Constraints
Build Your Schedule!You are now ready to begin building your schedule in the Veracross Scheduler.

See below for further details on each of these steps.


Getting Started

Before you can begin to use the Veracross Scheduler, some configuration needs to be done to determine what information the Scheduler will reference. You can use the following as a checklist to make sure each piece is configured properly prior to any activity within the Scheduler.  In conjunction with this documentation, please use the integrity check and configuration queries found on the Scheduler Prep homepage in Axiom.

As you go through each phase below, please begin to take note of questions you might have regarding your specific scheduling process in relation to the Veracross Scheduler.

PHASE 1: COURSE REQUESTS

1. Set the Scheduler School Year

Set the Scheduler School Year system parameter to the year you are going to schedule for. This system parameter determines what year's course requests can be seen in the portal and subsequently added in the portal or in Axiom. 

Note: The Scheduler School Year is used in the "Batch Add People to Class/Team/Program" query on the System homepage. This means that if you have already updated the Scheduler School year parameter to next year and now you need to batch add people to a class in the current year using the batch add query, first update the Scheduler School Year to the current year, run the batch update, then switch it back to next year. 

2. Determine Which Courses Are Available For Request

Update the "Available for Request" flag to "Yes" for courses you want to be available for request. You can check and uncheck this flag one at a time or in batch. You can find courses in two places:

  • Scheduler Prep homepage > Courses. 
    • Under each School Level section of the homepage there will be a "Courses" link where this option can be configured.
  • System homepage > Course List. 
    • It is recommended that you filter for the school level(s) you are using course requests for.

3. Add Course Requests

Adding course requests may take many forms at different schools. It can take several days or several weeks depending on your process. Course requests can be entered by administrators in Axiom or via the import tool, advisors and teachers in the portal, students in the student portal, or a combination of these methods. We recommend discussing your desired process with your account manager if you are doing this for the first time. 

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Add all course requests before using the Scheduler, including requests for newly accepted students. 
  • Newly accepted students — meaning accepted applicants and future students — are not accessible in the Student or Teacher Portal course request interface, so you will need to enter their course requests in Axiom or from within the Scheduler module.
  • Note: Accepted applicants must have at least one course request entered in Axiom before they will appear in the Scheduler.

Here are additional resources for adding course requests:
Course Request Overview | Learn Veracross
Webinar: Scheduler and Course Requests | Learn Veracross
Webinar: Scheduler, Part 1: Course Requests | Learn Veracross


PHASE 2: SCHEDULER PREP

1. Copy Classes

This step can happen at any point prior to step 5, i.e., you must have "next year's classes" created before determining which classes to include in the Scheduler. Read more about copying classes.

2. Determine Scheduler Configurations

Note: If you are planning to make any changes to Grading Periods, Rotations, or Blocks you must do so prior to completing the steps below. Please notify your Account Manager immediately if you are making changes in those areas for next year.

Each school level that is using the Veracross Scheduler must have its own configuration. To configure each school level, you’ll need to use the “Scheduler Configuration” queries under the school level column on the Scheduler homepage. From these links you can configure which Courses, Classes, Blocks, and Rooms should be included in the Scheduler. This allows you to control what data (within Courses, Classes, Blocks, and Rooms) the Scheduler will or will not use. Veracross analyzes your school’s current schedule configuration and tries to pre-set these according to how your schedule is currently setup in Veracross.

Subjects


School Levels : Each subject  to be included in the Scheduler must be associated with only one school level and cannot be associated with the ALL school level. 

  • If you do not have separate subjects for each school level, you will need to create them for each school level that will be utilizing the Scheduler.

Courses



Include in Scheduler: Set the "Include in Scheduler" flag to "Yes" for all courses you want included in the Scheduler. Courses marked "Yes" will appear in the Scheduler. Courses marked "No" will not be available at all in the Scheduler (but are still available in Axiom, of course).

  • You will likely include all or most of your academic courses in the Scheduler.
  • You might exclude courses such as independent studies and other courses you don't need to consider room usage for. Talk to your account manager if you are unsure about which courses to include and exclude.
  • Tip: If you want to manually schedule certain classes (e.g., TA hours or study halls) after the Scheduler has enrolled students , you can mark these courses to be included in the Scheduler, but leave them set up with no classes. This would allow you to manually add classes and enroll students in those classes in Scheduler after the rest of the scheduling was complete. You could also add classes and enroll students in Axiom after you have committed the schedule back to Axiom with the Scheduler module. 
Default Block Group: Ensure that the correct block groups to the appropriate courses.
Add New Courses: You cannot add courses in the Scheduler, so add any new courses in Axiom before launching the Scheduler.
Course Classifications: Course Classifications can be added to each course to determine the order in which the Scheduler will schedule classes. Each school can customize the list of available course classifications to best fit how they categorize their list of courses. The course classifications will need to be added prior to using the Scheduler Builder. Learn how to add and manage course classifications.

Classes


Primary Teacher: Classes must have a primary teacher set to teach the class or the class will not be scheduled. 
  • Only primary teachers will appear in the Scheduler; additional teachers on a class will not.
Max Students: Set a maximum number of students on the Other tab of each class so the Scheduler will not enroll too many students in a section. A class that has no max students indicated will not have any limit as to how many students can be enrolled in that particular section (up to the limit specified on the room, if applicable).
Block Group: Only update if it differs from the default block group set on the course.
Scheduler Grading Periods: Specify the grading periods during which each class should be scheduled. You can do this in Axiom or in the Scheduler.
  • In Axiom: Navigate to the "Scheduler Grading Periods" tab of a class record and click the appropriate grading periods in the "Available" column to move them to the "Active" column. 
    Note: You’ll need to close and re-open the class screen if you just added a new class in order to see the Scheduler Grading Periods tab in Axiom.
  • In Scheduler: Navigate to the class record and check the appropriate grading period boxes in the General section.
Note about mid-period class configuration: The Scheduler does not schedule mid-period classes. To accommodate a mid-period class in Scheduler, ensure that the major or minor grading period that the mid-period falls within is set as an active grading period. Once the class has been scheduled, you can adjust the begin or end dates of the class as needed to meet the times of your mid-period grading period.
Add New Classes/Sections: Add any classes for new courses and/or new sections for existing courses that should be scheduled for next year. You will be able to also add new sections within the Scheduler if needed.

Blocks


Include in Scheduler:  Set the "Include in Scheduler" flag to "Yes" for all blocks you want included in the Scheduler. Blocks marked "Yes" will be available in the Scheduler to choose from when scheduling classes. Those marked "No" will not be available at all in the Scheduler (but are still available in Axiom, of course).

Rooms


Include in Scheduler:  Set to "Yes" for all rooms you want included in the Scheduler. Rooms marked "Yes" will be available in the Scheduler to choose from when scheduling classes. Those marked "No" will not be available at all in the Scheduler (but are still available in Axiom, of course).
Add rooms that are missing: Make sure every room that can have a class scheduled in it is entered as a resource in Veracross and is set to be included in the Scheduler.
Determine room capacity: In addition to indicating which rooms should be used in the Scheduler, set a max room capacity on every room. A room with no capacity indicated is interpreted as having infinite capacity.

Subject/Room Pairing – If a room should ‘belong’ to a certain subject by default (e.g. Chem Lab belongs primarily to Science, or the Gymnasium belongs primarily to Phys. Ed.), indicate the primary subject/room pairing by setting the primary subject that should be scheduled in the room. To do this in Axiom:

 Other subjects can be configured to also use these rooms from within the Scheduler. Subject/Room pairing can also be overwritten on a course specific basis if needed.

School Level – If a room should have a school level associated with it, mark it on the detail screen of the room. By default, Rooms that have school level “All School” or that match the school level of the division that is using the Scheduler will appear in the Scheduler.


3. Reset Scheduler for Next Year

  1. Click into the Scheduler Configuration query on the Scheduler Prep homepage. 
  2. Click into the configuration record by click the Name of the Scheduler configuration. 
  3. Use the "Scenario to Keep" drop-down menu to select the scenario that you would like to keep from the previous year — typically, this is the scenario that you think will get you the best results this year. 
  4. After you select the Scenario to keep and click Update, run the "Reset Scheduler for New School Year" procedure in the Action menu.

Repeat for each scheduler configuration.


PHASE 3: SET CONSTRAINTS

1. Set Constraints

Constraints must be set prior to being able to begin scheduling.  The constraints that can be set are: 

  • Global Constraints
  • Subject Room Constraints
  • Course Constraints
  • Class Constraints
  • Teacher Constraints
  • Student Constraints

Full details on setting  constraints can be found here: Configuring Constraints in Scheduler.

You may also wish to review our webinar on Setting Constraints in Scheduler.


PHASE 4: BUILD YOUR SCHEDULE

1. Ready to Schedule!

You are now ready to build your schedule. For additional details on building class schedules and enrolling students in the Veracross Scheduler, see these additional resources: 

Documentation Articles:
Scheduler Scenarios and Results Overview | Learn Veracross
Scheduling Method Options In Scheduler | Learn Veracross
Manually Scheduling Classes in Scheduler | Learn Veracross
Reviewing Class Schedules with Scheduler | Learn Veracross
Enrolling Students into Classes with Scheduler | Learn Veracross
Single Student Scheduler | Learn Veracross
Reviewing Student Schedules | Learn Veracross

Webinars:
Webinar: Scheduler, Part 2: Setting Scheduler Constraints and Building the Master Class Schedule | Learn Veracross
Webinar: Scheduler — Part 3 | Learn Veracross
Webinar: Scheduler — Part 4 | Learn Veracross
Webinar: Who's In, Who's Out: Single Student Scheduler and Class Enrollment Manager | Learn Veracross