We just released three meaningful features that I’d like to share with you

Searching by Student ID

When you are filtering a list of student transfers – incoming, outgoing, or internal – you can now search by Student ID.

Preventing Duplicate Requests

We noticed that there were quite a few duplicate requests coming in from parents for the same year. Now we check for duplicates for a given year. If the transfer request is in a state other than rejected, the duplicate transfer request will not be allowed and the parent will receive a message that their existing transfer request is under consideration.

Physical Letter Generation – No More Mail Merge

In similar fashion to email templates, you can now generate PDF files directly within K12 Transfers. The letters can be generated on demand and in batch for batch printing. This is a very big feature so you will want to read the following how to articles:

Letter Templates

Manually Generating a Letter

Configuring Letter Delivery


Deleted SIS Absences Maintained in Attend

One challenge with our SIS integration occurred when an absence code was updated to a present code. The absence remained in Attend even though it was removed from the SIS. We recently made an update to address this issue. Even though the absence was removed from the SIS, we wanted to keep the record in Attend. To do this we introduced the notion of archiving an absence record. Now absences that get removed from the SIS can be seen in Attend (with a strikethrough) without affecting the absence records and rates.

Help Guidance and Support in Attend for Admins

We also just introduced built in help guidance and support in Attend. Now you can view help documentation directly in Attend. If you need help performing an activity you can click on the “Get Help” link to see a list of help documentation.

If you can’t find the solution you need, you can “Send a Message” and we’ll receive your support request. All of this can be completed directly in Attend.


We’re rolling out new features for K12 Transfers. Today, we enabled admins with the ability to change the assigned school. The feature is meant as a way to correct errors and so parents will not receive notification when these changes are made. You will need to contact them directly.


We took a big step toward wrapping up development of Attend – our absence intervention application – this week with building out the first components that manage notifications. To say that increasing attendance is a complex problem would be the understatement of the year! You start to get an appreciation for how complex it is when you are building a system designed to help districts increase attendance. I had no idea how important attendance is before working on this project!

I’m extremely happy with the results so far. At the 50,000 foot level it sounds easy: pull absence data from the district SIS, crunch some absence rates, and then notify parents that their kids need to stop missing school. Needless to say, there are a myriad of legal and process subtleties that make things get complex quickly. One problem was just the sheer volume of data. Ordinarily when we build applications we deal with student data that is roughly the size of the student population. No big deal. To deal with the sheer volume of absence data, we were unable to take our usual approaches and we ended up writing extremely sophisticated database routines for importing and performing calculations on the data. It took a lot longer than initially planned but I am extremely happy with the outcome. Here’s a view our districts have that allow them to quickly identify and manage at risk students (identifying data have been anonymized).

From here the district’s Child Welfare and Attendance department can quickly review and schedule interventions.

As you can see in this simple example, a single student has nearly 20 absences. Unfortunately, this is not atypical.

Our next step is enabling notifications. I’m extremely happy with our design on this. Not only do we allow districts to generate paper notifications (traditional mail) but we also support email and SMS notifications. This will go a long way to engaging parents as early as possible. I’ll have more to share soon.


K12 Transfers supports email notifications for parents that allow parents to know the status of their student’s transfer request without having to contact the district office. This makes for a much better experience for parents and reduces support costs for the district. However, one challenge that remains is that parents don’t always enter their email addresses correctly. We can’t fix that but today we’re released a feature that provides a brief audit for email notifications. You can see the addresses emails were sent to, when they were sent, if they were opened, and if links in the email were clicked. Now on every transfer request, you have an audit trail for all the emails that were sent regarding the transfer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’d also like to take this opportunity to remind you that there are two features that many of you are not using. The first is “on submission” email templates. This template notifies parents when they submit their transfer requests so that they know their transfer is “in process.” The other is granting sites access to view approved transfers. This allows sites to see approved transfers as and when they are approved so that you don’t have to send them spreadsheets in email.


One of the challenges with managing student transfers is communicating with the sites that are to receive new students. Very often the districts we work with email spreadsheets of the approved students to each site. This takes a lot of time when you have lots of sites and is compounded during busy transfer times. With our inter-district transfer application – K12 Transfers – you can now grant access to sites and they can check for approved transfers to their site when it is convenient.

  1. Navigate to the User you wish to grant access
  2. Edit the user and make them a site manager
  3. Now add the site or sites you wish to provide access for

The user will now be able to see approved transfers for their site. No more spreadsheets to compile and no more spreadsheets to email.


Over the past week we made four updates to K12 Transfers that were made available this morning.

Updated Google Sign In

If you sign in with your district Google account, you’ll have one less click to do when you sign in. We updated the sign in process so that you only have to provide permission to your account once. On subsequent sign ins you’ll go directly to the application without having to click the “okay” button.

Transfer notification opt-out

When you apply for a transfer you now have the option of opting out of receiving email notification. The default is to receive notification but there are some cases where you don’t want notifications to be sent and so now you have that option.

Transfer submitted email template

You can now send a notification to parents when they submit a transfer request by creating a transfer submitted email template. This allows you to let parents know that their transfer request was received.

Hide Schools from Transfer Form

So that you don’t have to add schools manually, we pull school information from the California Department of Education site. The challenge with this is that not all schools in the state’s data are valid for a district at any given time. To help prevent transfer requests to sites that are not currently valid – for whatever reason – we now allow you to hide schools from the transfer form. To update, go into the schools section and update the site’s visibility.

Up Next

Over the next week or so we’ll be adding

  • admin view of inactive transfers
  • site access for approved transfers

as well as performing general system upgrades.


Since launching K12 Transfers last summer, parents have successfully completed 1,745 online inter district transfers between the Coachella Valley, Desert Sands, and Palm Springs Unified School Districts. In that year, we learned a lot and over the next few weeks we will be enhancing the application. Here are some of the features you will see shortly.

Additional Email Templates

We currently have five email templates that notify parents of their transfer request progress: outgoing transfer approved/rejected, incoming transfer approved/rejected, and transfer renewal required. We will be adding an additional template to let parents know that their initial transfer request has been received.

Email notification opt-out

Sometimes a district or parent wants to initiate a transfer request and does not want to receive email notifications. Transfer requests will include an email notification opt-out.

Site Visibility

K12 Transfers pulls district and school information from lists produced by the California Department of Education. Some of these schools may not be open for transfers into your district. We will be enabling administrators to show/hide schools on the transfer request form.

Site Access for Completed Transfers

Once an incoming transfer has been accepted school sites need to be notified. It is very common for CWA to email an Excel file to the sites with a list of accepted transfers. Rather than exporting to Excel and emailing the site, admins will be able to grant sites access to view approved transfers to their sites directly in K12 Transfers.

Improved Google and O365 Integration

Google and Microsoft have updated their authentication APIs and so we’ll be updating K12 Transfers to reflect these changes. This will improve the log in experience by eliminating a step.

These updates are based on feedback we receive from you so please keep sharing your feedback.