This is an exciting implementation year for Cabell County using OnCourse Systems. There will be both success and glitches. We are working diligently to find the answers for all your questions and problems. OnCourse has been an outstanding company to work with in addressing our needs and are very open to providing each of you support. This list of answers and tips is quite lengthy but hopefully it will address most of the questions you have had in our past trainings. As we get additional questions or information, it will be added in future newsletters. All information will be also be added to our county webpage as OnCourse FAQs and updated as we get additional answers. Please feel free to contact your school / county TIS to provide you with any additional support. As you work in OnCourse, please keep in mind the following:
· If you delete something, you will see a popup window asking if you are sure you want to delete it.
· If you delete something, accidentally you can still undo it, even after closing the browser and returning to it.
· OnCourse invites you to contact Technical Support if you have a problem. This is truly a customer friendly company that wants to ensure each teacher's success. So, please call them if you have a question or issue.
· OnCourse backs up everything permanently. Thus, even if you delete a template or lesson plan and can't seem to get it back from undo, you can call Technical Support and ask them to restore it.
You can retrieve your own password, if you have forgotten it, to the right of the OnCourse login screen (from home it is http://oncoursesystems.com
). Click “Retrieve Password”, answer your security questions and you will be able to reset your password. If you don’t like your questions, you can change them under “My Account” once you get logged in.
If traveling teachers cannot access all their schools’ classes and students for printing purposes, lesson planning or grades they should contact Larry Oyster (firstname.lastname@example.org ), Jennifer Marinacci (email@example.com ), or Jeremy Baisden (firstname.lastname@example.org ).
Record Blank Space as a Zero:
If a teacher prefers the blank spaces in OnCourse Grade Book be recorded as a “0” for a student’s grade until the assignment / test is turned in and graded, the teacher can use the Quick Fill feature to set everyone’s grade at “0” then fill in each student’s grades as you get them graded. You can always set the grades to “unpublish” until you have everyone’s grades recorded.
· The “Internal Comment for Staff Only” section of the Comments in Grade Book about a particular student is only for the administration and a specific teacher. Those comments show up privately in that student’s information.
· Teacherscan send out class messages that show up on the student / parent portalusing the “Post OnCourse Connect Message” under the Communicate tab.
1st & 2nd Grade Teachers:
Comments for individual students can be added in the regular grade book, even though the standards based grade book is being used. These comments can also be printed along with the report cards by the principal each marking period.
Printing 1st & 2nd Grade Report Cards VS 3rd – 12th Grade Report Cards
Principals will be responsible for printing the standards based report cards for 1st and 2nd grades along with the comments. From the Reporting icon (looks like a pie chart), they choose Report Card/Progress Reports Student Report Card (2 Column – Large Font). If the teachers have made comments for their students make sure the “print comments” feature is turned on under the parameters. Your school TIS can help if you have any questions.
All other Report Cards will be printed in the same manner as they were last year.
OnCourse Lesson Planner Answers & Tips
Instead of printing the lesson plans straight from the lesson planner in OnCourse, you have the option to export them to a Word or Excel document that may help with the formatting issues. This is a known problem that has been reported. You find this option on the same line as the print option.
When a template is created and is saved and set to default in the view you want to use (i.e. Weekly, Weekly Rotated, or Daily) that is how it should come up each time. However, if you are viewing a lesson plan in a different view and close it will reopen in the last view it was exited because it is stored in the cache. Once you click on a new date to start new lesson plans, your default template should return to the view you prefer.
Linking Classes to Templates:
You must link each class that you are teaching to your lesson planner template block that is associated with it so the homework for that class shows up in the correct students’ home portals. Otherwise, if you have 100 students through-out the day in 5 different classes, all 100 students will have homework from you for 5 subjects. Call your school TIS to assist you in doing this.
Thereare a plethora of reports available to you under the pie chart icon. These are in PDF format. Depending on your version of Adobe, you may find your print and save options in different places. Sometimes it will be on the top of the screen; sometimes you may have to hover with your mouse over the bottom right to get the tools to pop up. You might also try the keystroke tools:
· Ctrl+P for Print or Ctrl+Shift+S for Save
Facts, Problems & Known Issues:
· The “Load Grade Book Template” option under Action is not available for our district.
· A work around for Grade Book display not being complete or showing up correctly is by using a different computer. The problem is under investigation.
· The problem with the checkmark not showing up in the new version of Grade Book when utilizing a checkmark as a score for a grade option in the Grade Book has been reported and they are working on it.
· UseCtrl – if your screen view makes it difficult for you to view the“Save” button on the bottom of the screen when adding assignments orcategories to multiple classes.
· We have asked for additional pages or ability to add columns on a page in the Lesson Planner.
· Parents are tied to students in OnCourse through their parent's name and phone number in WVEIS. These have to be the same for each child; otherwise, the parent will have to log in to multiple portals. Thus, a parent must be entered in WVEIS for each student exactly the same way with the same phone number. For example, "Pat Smith" and "Patricia Smith" will create separate portals and passwords for her to view her two children, rather than one portal to view both. Jeff Smith has a spreadsheet that can identify the disparities when students are in different schools.
Missing Lesson Plans in OnCourse:
OnCourse gave the following reply when asked how to find missing lesson plans. The processes listed may help you save time if you ever lose your lesson plans. Please note…for any of these to work, the plans had to be saved at some point.
If you make a mistake with OnCourse Lesson Planner, it is easy to restore your plans from a prior version.
To restore your plans:
Click on the block you would like to restore.
Click on the Undo Changes link from the toolbar on the left.
In the Undo Changes section, you will see all of the different revisions you have made to your plans.
Scroll down until you see the proper revision of your plans.
To restore your plans, click on the green u-turn arrow next to the plans you would like to restore.
Click Ok to the message.
Click Save and Close.
Repeat for each block you would like to restore
To find 'missing' plans:
If a plan seems to be missing, never fear. There are a few places we can check.
It is possible that they were accidentally written in the wrong week. Try to locate your plans by toggling between different weeks using the navigational calendar in the upper left.
You might also check to make sure that you didn't accidentally write your plans in the proper week but wrong year.
You might also want to check in the templates section of the left menu column just in case you accidentally wrote your plans as a "template" instead of an actual plan.
Searching for Plans:
Still can't find your plan? Perhaps a keyword search can help you locate it! To search you plans for a key-word or phrase:
Go to MyPlanner tab.
On the left menu, under the navigational calendar, click on the Search Plans link.
Enter a keyword or phrase in the Search Text field at the top of the page.
This will take you to each plan that contains that key word or phrase.