Reduce stress this academic year rollover – a guide for IT teams in schools  

13 June, 2024

Reduce stress this academic year rollover – a guide for IT teams in schools  

Academic year rollover can be an extremely stressful period for IT professionals in education, whether you work in a single school or need to prepare several schools in your trust for September.

Academic year rollover can be an extremely stressful period for IT professionals in education, whether you work in a single school or need to prepare several schools in your trust for September.

As the new academic year looms, IT managers and their teams in schools and multi academy trusts face the monumental task of rollover: updating your Management Information System (MIS) data, archiving old classes and adding accounts, groups and classes for new students and staff.

At SalamanderSoft, we’ve worked with IT teams in schools for almost two decades, so we’ve compiled this guide outlining the most common challenges of academic rollover and sharing some of our key tips to make the process run smoothly.

Illustration of a person standing on top of a book with a graduation cap preparing for academic year rollover 

Why is the new academic year rollover so challenging?

For teachers and students, the buzz of a new academic year means new timetables and classes. And, while new starters worry about logins for emails and getting used to their new learning apps and platforms, IT teams are working hard behind the scenes and during summer to ensure everything is set up correctly and running smoothly across their school(s).

But, why is rollover such a daunting task?

Massive volume of user account management

A significant number of new user accounts for students, teachers and administrative staff must be created, while the old ones (school leavers) need disabling.

This is a time-consuming process for teams and leads to other important IT tasks being pushed down the priority list.

High level of consistency and accuracy required

Any errors in account set-up can lead to access issues and disruption of teaching and learning. IT teams must be accurate, consistent, and timely in creating and provisioning user accounts to allow staff and students access to their emails, documents, learning tools, and other systems.

Integration with various systems

Schools and trusts often use multiple platforms, such as Microsoft 365, Google Workspace and Exchange. IT managers must guarantee the seamless integration between these systems and their school’s MIS.

Data security is vital for academic year rollover

Making sure all users have appropriate permissions and security protocols are consistently applied across all school platforms and systems is essential in protecting sensitive data.

The chance of human error is high

From our experience working with IT professionals in schools, we’ve seen some nightmarish scenarios during rollover season. A common mistake is failing to update the intake year for new pupils, leading to account complications. Additionally, using CSVs for multiple schools can result in standardisation issues, complicating the process further.

Illustration of two people high-fiving after a successful academic year rollover

Take the stress out of your next academic year rollover

Streamline your rollover for the next academic year with the following tips:

Review MIS vendor documentation early

Review your MIS vendor’s end-of-school-year process documentation well in advance to identify necessary tasks and plan ahead.

Get organised with timetables and data coordination

Coordinate with your timetabler to know when new classes and timetables will be ready, helping you plan your time efficiently.

Stay in contact with admissions

Find out when new starter data will be ready to effectively coordinate your team’s workload.

Collaborate with senior leadership

Stay updated with senior leaders about new staff joining and dedicated staff training days to understand IT requirements.

Enjoy the magic of automation with Salamander this academic year rollover

Automate the creation and updating of user accounts, making sure they are accurate and up to date without manual intervention.

Our Integration Suite significantly reduces the workload on IT teams:

  • Seamless integration with multiple platforms, including Microsoft 365, Google Workspace, Apple School and more.
  • Customisable and configurable for every school and your specific needs without extensive scripting or manual configuration.
  • Frees up your time to focus on other critical IT tasks and enhancing school efficiency, teaching and learning.
  • A support team who gets it. We know time is precious in education so our support team goes above and beyond to make sure any issues are quickly resolved, and the system continues to operate smoothly.
  • Manage permissions consistently across all platforms, enhancing security and ensuring that all users have appropriate access levels.

 

School or MAT?

Switching MIS providers is a breeze when you unleash the magic of SalamanderSoft.

We’re the UK’s leading user management solutions provider, trusted by 4,000+ schools. Our Integration Suite automates the creation of staff and pupil accounts and the setup of classes, subjects, year groups, and more.  

More information

MSP for education? 

Have you got customers who are considering switching MIS provider? We can help!

Salamander for Partners can help managed service providers (MSP), value added resellers (VAR), or IT support providers (ITSP) save time and eradicate the hassle of onboarding and provisioning schools while earning you an attractive reseller margin. 

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Courtney Farrow

Written by Courtney Farrow

Marketing and Social media

Courtney supports SalamanderSoft in creating engaging online content for the company website and social media channels. She has over ten years of experience in digital content creation and her company Bloom Creative specialises in helping software and tech brands attract, convert and retain customers.

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