Getting Started

If you are new to Schoolcomms the information below will guide you through some steps to complete ahead of your Go Live date.

Download Schoolcomms

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Download the latest version of Schoolcomms.

Please ensure you have uninstalled your previous version of Schoolcomms before proceeding with the new download. This will not affect your data.

For network-wide deployment, the latest Schoolcomms Windows Installer (MSI) package can be downloaded here.

Click here for our guide to Installing Schoolcomms.

The minimum version of .NET Framework required for the desktop release is 4.5 though we would recommend updating to the latest version 4.7.2.

The latest version is available on the Microsoft site here.

To check your current version of .NET please follow the instructions found here.

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Inform Parents

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Ahead of your Go Live date it’s advisable to inform your parents of a change in school systems, so that they can sign up for School Gateway here and install the App on to their phones. Click here to access our School Gateway Success Guide, which includes an email and letter template to help you advertise the new system to your parents.

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Import SIMS Data in to Schoolcomms

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Your import settings determine the contacts and data that are imported from SIMS.

To review your Schoolcomms Import Settings go to Management > Import Management > Edit settings.

Select the Pre-admissions tick box if you wish to send messages to students who are due to join your school.

Choose whether you wish to import All groups or just Active groups (faster).

Select to import contact details from SIMS and whose contact details you wish to import. By default, the import is set to include Priority 1 parents and all are flagged as prime. If you wish to include other priorities and/or parental responsibility and set another choice for prime/non-prime, click on Change.
sims import

Select whether you wish to import email address and/or mobile numbers.

Tick the Send a text/ email to each new or changed number/address if you do wish to notify each new contact. We advise that the ‘Send a Text message to each new or changed number?’ option is left un-ticked for your first import as this will send a text to each new  contact you import and will use a large amount of your text credits.

Finally, opt out any children whose parents don’t want Schoolcomms to have any access to their data using the Manage Exceptions sections.

Once you are happy with your chosen settings to import members, groups and contact details into Schoolcomms from SIMS you will need to run an import from SIMS, by clicking Run at the bottom of the Edit Settings screen.

This data needs to be refreshed regularly to ensure it is up to date, so we advise you run an import every morning when you log in to Schoolcomms.

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Create Additional User Accounts

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Some licence types are able to have Unlimited Schoolcomms Logins. You can create new Schoolcomms users if you are the schools Multi-User Administrator from ManagementDashboard User Accounts

Add a New Schoolcomms user

To add a user select Add New User Account and then fill in the details.

You will need to select a permission group, these groups decide what this user is able to see/do in Schoolcomms.

Once you are happy with the details press save on the top right-hand corner.

Hint: In this window there is a check box that reads “Use this email address as the reply to address sent from the compose email screen by this user”. If you tick this, then any replies to any email this user sends out in Schoolcomms will be delivered to their own email address provided on this screen.

Memorable data will then appear for the user you have created, please write this down so you can pass this on to the user.

The users’ password will be emailed to them using the email you provided.

 

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User Permissions

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SIMS User Permissions

View the latest guide here

Schoolcomms User Permissions

View the latest guide here.

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School Gateway Settings

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Brand School Gateway

Brand School Gateway enables you to customise School Gateway with your own banner, logo and a colour selected from a limited colour palette, so that parents see images they instantly recognise then they log in to School Gateway for the first time. To access Brand School Gateway click the School Gateway tab within Schoolcomms, and select Brand School Gateway from the left-hand menu.

Below are the recommended specifications to help you when adding your school logo and banner:

Recommended measurements

Required specifications

Size: maximum of 2MB
File type: png; jpg; jpeg

Behaviour

Correct ratio and size:

Correct ratio and incorrect size:
Uploading an image with correct ratio but bigger than recommended size (1440/400px) will be resized to fit.
Uploading an image with correct ratio but smaller than recommended size (1440/400px) will result in a blurred low quality image.
Incorrect ratio:
Uploading an image with an incorrect ratio will result in the image being cropped and centred.
Uploading an image with an incorrect ratio will result in the image being cropped and centred.

To make the most of the branding

To achieve the best possible result, save the image as a png file (for a sharper image); set the colour mode to RGB (for brighter and clearer colours) and use a resolution between 72dpi and 150dpi (to maintain a high quality image without compromising load time).

How it is going to look


School Gateway app preview

Recommended measurements

Required specifications

Size: maximum of 2MB
File type: png; jpg; jpeg

Behaviour

Correct ratio and size:

Without background
With background

Correct ratio and incorrect size:

Uploading an image with the correct ratio but bigger than the recommended size (400/400px) will be resized to fit.
Uploading an image with the correct ratio but smaller than the recommended size (400/400px) will result in a blurred low quality image.

Incorrect ratio:

Uploading an image with an incorrect ratio will result in the image being cropped and centred.
Uploading an image with an incorrect ratio will result in the image being cropped and centred.

To make the most of the branding

To achieve the best possible result, save the image as a transparent png file (for a sharper image); set the colour mode to RGB (for brighter and clearer colours) and use a resolution between 72dpi and 150dpi (to maintain a high quality image without compromising load time).

The uploaded image will be centred and the edges cropped to fit inside the circle. To prevent any part of the image being lost add a 10 pixel margin.

How it is going to look


School Gateway app preview

School Gateway Links

School Gateway Links allows you to link to other internet pages, such a homework products, school calendars and school social media pages via School Gateway. This allows you to make School Gateway your central hub for parents to access all Schoolcomms products used within school.

To access School Gateway Links please follow the steps below;

  1. Within Schoolcomms click the Dashboard tab.
  2. Once the Dashboard internet window opens click the School Gateway logo on the left hand side of your screen.
  3. Here you will see several options you can customise with links to external internet pages.
  4. Click on the section you would like to add a link for, and paste the required web address in to the Link box. You can then test this link by using the Link Icon next to this box
  5. Type a description in to the Description box, if needed, and decide if you would like this link to be available to Students, Parents or Staff
  6. If the page you would like to link to is not listed as an option, click Create Custom Link and add another.
  7. Once happy, click Save.

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