Other MIS or Database

The following guide will walk you through the process of updating your student and parent information in preparation for the new academic year. This is often referred to as the 'Summer Roll Up' process.

Important: Headings marked with ** are only be be followed if applicable to you.

Change of MIS**

If you have changed MIS recently, it is very important that you contact us before attempting to import data from a new MIS in to ParentMail.

You can reach us via Live Chat or Email: school_support@parentmail.co.uk.

Cashless Catering**

To save time manually matching accounts to your cashless tills in September, it is vital that you import your pre-admission students into ParentMail before the students are added to your cashless tills. To add your pre-admissions, please read the next step.

Pre-Admissions

Why should I import my pre-admissions?

Importing your pre-admissions enables your new parents to register for ParentMail and download the ParentMail App before the start of the new academic year. This is a great advantage, allowing your parents to (depending on the packages you have):

  • Receive Emails & Texts: Notifying parents about valuable information before their student(s) start school.
  • Respond to Online Forms: Allowing you to gather important parent/student information before September.
  • Make Online Payments: Enabling parents to purchase items ahead of time. For example: School uniform, term fees, stationary or topping up their dinner money balance.
  • Be made aware of Events: Keeping parents informed about events that may involve them and/or their student(s).

If you do not need to import your pre-admissions, please skip to the 'Removing Leavers' section of this guide.

How to import your pre-admissions

1) Start by saving the import template spreadsheet to your computer. Download the spreadsheet here:

2) Once saved, open the import template spreadsheet and fill in columns A-G with the following details: StudentForename, StudentSurname, Year, Reg, DOB and Gender.

  • Year and Reg: Enter the group as ‘Pre-Admissions’.
  • The Date of Birth must be in the format: 14 March 2002.

3) The StudentID needs to be unique for each student. If students appear on multiple lines (due to having more than one parent), you will need to ensure that the same StudentID is used for each line they appear on. We recommend that you use the formula: '="MAN-"&A2&B2&F2'. Once you have entered the formula, press the Enter key on your keyboard:

4) Next, create IDs for the rest of the students. To do this, in the bottom right-hand corner of the cell 'C2', hold your cursor onto the green square and drag down until you have reached the last student record. You can select a few records at a time if you find this an easier method:

5) The IDs will populate for all students. The following is an example of cell C13 and C14 listing the same ID due to the students’ record listed twice:

6) After all the students have ID's assigned, change the formula into values. Highlight from cell C2 all the way until you reach the end of the students. Right click the highlighted section and select Copy (CTRL + C):

7) Right click on the highlighted fields again and select Paste Values. This will change the formula into the values you have selected:

8) After the values have been pasted, click onto cell C2 to check the field above is displayed as shown:

9) Columns H-U should be filled in with parent details: Relationship (Mother, Father, etc.), Title, ContactForename, ContactSurname, PrimaryEmail, MobileNumber:

  • You can choose to fill in the parents address from columns O-U; however, this is not mandatory.
  • If you are using ParentMail for Text messaging only, leave the ‘Primary Email’ column blank but do not delete the column header.
  • If you are using ParentMail for Email messaging only, leave the ‘Mobile Number’ column blank but do not delete the column header.
  • Column V is the ‘Priority’ column, which indicates whether the individual is a primary contact. Enter ‘1’ if you require the contact to be the Primary Contact and ‘2’ for a non-primary contact. If you leave this column blank, every contact added will not be a primary contact for the students.

10) The ContactID will need to be unique for each parent. Please be aware that if you have a parent with more than one child at your school, the ContactID will need to be the same for each row that the parent appears on, so the system does not create duplicate accounts and links both children to 1 account. We recommend that you use the formula: '="MAN-"&J2&K2&M2&N2'. Once you have entered the formula, press the Enter key on your keyboard:

11) Repeat the process shown in steps 4-8 for the ContactID column.

12) Ensure you have checked your import template and that the data is correct and in the right format. If you need further clarification, do not hesitate to contact us on Live Chat and a technical support advisor will be able to assist.

13) Save the spreadsheet as 'preadmissions.csv'. It is important the spreadsheet is saved with the file type: CSV (Comma Delimited) as shown in the following graphic:

14) Within ParentMail, from the left-hand menu select Imports > Create Import.

15) Click the blue Select CSV import file button and your file explorer will appear. Locate the pre-admissions spreadsheet you have created and click Open.

16) The file name will appear in green. Click Queue Import.

17) You will receive a ‘Success’ message to advise that the file has been successfully queued for import.

18) Within Imports > Imports you will find a list of your most recent imported files. Select the pre-admissions import and click CSV to view any rejected records. If there are rejected records, make the amendments in the original file you created and saved then follow steps 12-17 to re-import the file.

Removing Leavers

Why do I need to remove my leavers?

To avoid communication being sent out to students/staff that have left the school, we recommend that you use the Remove Leavers tool situated under Settings in the left-hand menu. This will need to be carried out after your leavers have been marked as ‘off roll’ students and before your account has rolled up to the new academic year. Students can be removed in bulk (by class, year or registration group), as well as individually. This process will also delete parents that are linked to the child. Staff can only be removed individually.

Please note: Only remove your leavers once you have settled any outstanding balances for dinners or any payment items.


Useful payment reports to see any outstanding fees

  • General payments and invoices: Within the left-hand menu select Payments > Outstanding Payments and click Download. This report will display all outstanding payments for all payment items.
  • For cashless catering only: Within the left-hand menu select Payments > Cashless Reconciliation. Filter the 'Report By' drop-down by; All, Students, or Staff. Click Filter, tick the box in the above left-hand corner above 'Select' and click Export. This report will display all arrears in addition to users' balances.
  • For registers only: Within the left-hand menu select Registers > Register Activity, select the register in the above left-hand corner and filter the 'Report By'; All, Students, or Staff. Click Filter, tick the box in the above left-hand corner above 'Select' and click Export. This report will display all arrears in addition to users' balances.

Important: To chase up debts/send communications to students' parents after they have left, you can move these students into a 'leavers group' by completing the following steps, otherwise skip to 'Removing Students'.


Creating a Leavers Group

1) Select Groups > Create New Group from the left-hand menu:

2) Next, you will need to create two groups; one for each group type for Year and Registration:

  • The first group using the 'Year Groups' group type:
  • The second group using the 'Registration Groups' group type:

3) Navigate to Groups > Groups in the left-hand menu and search for the two new leavers groups you have created.

4) Select the 'Year Group' type for the leavers group and click Manage Group Members:

5) Within the contact book, select Group Types > Year Groups. Tick the students you would like to move into the 'Leavers' group. Once done, click Confirm:

6) The students will then appear under the ‘Leavers’ group.

7) Follow the above steps again, but this time for the Registration group ‘Leavers’.

Completing this process will keep the leavers on your system and avoid the new students being merged into the same groups as the leavers.


Removing Students

To remove students that have left your school, please complete the following instructions:

1) Within the left-hand menu, click Settings > Remove Leavers:

2) Click the Remove Leavers button:

3) The contact book will then appear on the screen. You can search for the leaving student(s) by:

  • Searching the student(s) in the search bar and ticking them.
  • Bulk deletion by navigating to Group Types > Year Groups/Registration Groups and ticking the group(s).

4) To check which students you are removing, click on the Selected section. Here you can see all the students which have been selected. If you notice a student that should not be in the list, untick the checkbox to the left of their name:

5) Once you are happy with the students you have selected, click Confirm:

6) You will then be prompted with the 'Request to Remove Users' box. This will tell you how many users will be removed and the option to Remove Parents Only or Remove Students and Parents:

Please note: To ensure that no communications are sent out to parents by accident, we recommend that you remove both students and the parents. If the parent has other children linked at your school, our system will recognise there are other connections linked to the user and keep them on the system, removing the leaver student only.

7) One last confirmation box will appear. Click Yes to continue. Once you have confirmed this, the action cannot be undone:

The selected users will now be removed from ParentMail. You can now refresh your ParentMail page (click F5 on your keyboard) to update the information.


Removing Staff

1) Within the left-hand menu, select Users > List.

2) There are 2 methods to locate a staff leaver:

  • Search for their name within the search field.
  • Filter the 'All Types' drop-down to 'Staff' and browse through the pages:

3) When you have found the relevant staff user, click onto their name and it will populate their record. Click the Actions button and select Delete:

4) The ‘Confirm Action’ box will appear. Click Delete to continue:

You have now removed your staff members from ParentMail. Follow these steps again to delete additional staff leavers or any manually created user(s), e.g. Governors, Volunteers etc.

Rolling up your ParentMail account

The simplest method for you to roll up your ParentMail account is by running an export report from your MIS/Database and completing our PMX Import Template. You can find an example of how the spreadsheet should look here.

Your MIS/Database provider or IT technician should be able to assist you in creating this data spreadsheet.

To avoid the duplication of data, please come onto Live Chat for ParentMail to check the current data ID’s for your students/contacts on ParentMail.

After the report has been created, the data will need to be checked:

  1. The column headers in our PMX Import Template are at the top of your data spreadsheet.
  2. Columns A-G should be filled in with the following details: StudentForename, StudentSurname, Year, Reg, DOB and Gender.
  3. Columns H-U should be filled in with parent details: Relationship (the relationship to the student i.e. Mother, Father etc), Title, ContactForename, ContactSurname, PrimaryEmail, MobileNumber. You can choose to fill in the parents address from columns O-U; however, this is not mandatory.
  4. ID’s – Following from after you have spoken to a ParentMail agent on the Live Chat, you will be able to manage the ID’s:
  • The StudentID needs to be unique for each student. If students appear on multiple lines (due to having more than one parent), you will need to ensure that the same StudentID is used for each line they appear on.
  • The ContactID will need to be unique for each parent. Please be aware that if you have a parent with more than one child at your school, the ContactID will need to be the same for each row that the parent appears on. We recommend that you use this guide to ensure that your ID’s are unique for each child.
  • If you need to create ID’s manually, please click here.
  1. Column V is the ‘Priority’ column, which indicates whether the individual is a primary contact. Please enter ‘1’ if you require the contact to be the ‘Primary Contact’ and ‘2’ for a non-primary contact. If you leave this column blank, every contact added will not be a primary contact for the child.

If you would like someone from ParentMail to check the data, please contact us via Live Chat or email: school_support@parentmail.co.uk. This will allow us to avoid any possible data problems from occurring. Please have your data ready in a password protected document. If you are unsure on how to password protect the spreadsheet, please click here for a guide.

When you are happy with the data spreadsheet, please follow these simple steps to upload the data onto ParentMail as shown below:

  1. Save the spreadsheet to your files. You can name is along the lines of 'parentmailsummer20**.csv' (** for the Year). It is important the spreadsheet is saved as the file type of: CSV (Comma Delimited), otherwise the document will fail to upload into ParentMail.
  2. Navigate to ParentMail, select Imports > Select Create Import from the left-hand menu.
  3. Click Select CSV import file and find the spreadsheet you have created. Highlight the file, click Open.
  4. The file name will appear in green. Click Queue Import (last button on the right-hand side).
  5. You will then receive a ‘Success’ message to advise that it has been successfully queued for import.

Always remember to check your data rejections report. Please read below the information:

Student & Parent Rejected Records Report

What is the rejected records report?

After importing data into ParentMail, it will produce a 'rejections report' if any data was not imported successfully. This report will show you any Students, Parents or Staff records that could not be imported due to reasons explained in this guide. Correcting these rejections is vital to ensure the best possible launch and success with ParentMail.

Where do I correct the data that lead to a rejection?

You should use this report to identify missing information or errors in your MIS and then correct them directly in your MIS system. You can then repeat the manual import process.

When do I need to check the rejected records report?

You will be provided with a Rejected Records Report with each new import – we recommend you check these regularly to ensure everything is importing successfully.

Where is the rejected records report?

1) To access the report, within ParentMail navigate to Imports > Imports in the left-hand menu.

2) Select the most recent Parents & Students import:

3) Select the green CSV button to download the report. Once downloaded open the spreadsheet:

4a) You have nothing to worry about if your report is empty as shown in the following graphic, this means no data records are rejected:

4b) If your data requires attention, your Rejected Records Report will list the information that has not been imported into your ParentMail account, please see the following :

Rejections Explained

Columns ‘A’ to ‘G’ show the student’s details with columns ‘H’ to ‘V’ showing their parent/contact’s details. The ‘Status’ column (column ‘W’), will advise of the three potential types of rejections that have occurred:

1) Complete Row Rejection : A complete row rejection will show when both the student and their contact has failed to import. The causes of a complete row rejection are usually regarding the student’s details.

2) Partially Rejection: This is when the student has been successfully imported but their contact hasn’t. This is usually due to vital details missing or set up incorrectly (columns ‘H’ to ‘V’). You will need to rectify this data as per the explanation in column X for the contact to receive communication.

3) Import Successful (warning only): This status means that both the student and the contact’s details have been successfully uploaded into ParentMail, but something may still require your attention that could stop the parents receiving the communications. The required focus of your attention is explained in column 'X'.

Column X will provide you with the reason as to why this rejection has occurred.


1) Complete Row Rejection:

Reason 1: REJECTED RECORD - Due to an internal system error that has been logged. One of the relationship users are invalid:

This means that the student that is being imported, is also listed as a parent within your MIS system - this is common when the parent and student share the same name and get linked as their own parent in error.

To fix this, you need to delete the parent record in your MIS system and create a brand-new record from scratch, then link this to the student.


2) Partially Rejected:

Reason 1: Parent requires either an email address or mobile number or both:

To add a contact to ParentMail they must be contactable, if they do not have an email address (column 'M') or mobile number (column 'N') they will not be imported.

Reason 2: A user with a mobile number/email already exists at this organisation:

This message appears when the email address or mobile number has already been imported into ParentMail for another contact.

Usually this is because both parents have given you the same contact details – the best way to check this is by navigating to Users > List in the left-hand menu of ParentMail and search for the mobile number or email address (whichever 'already exists') to find out who has been added with those details as shown in the following graphic:

If the parents have only given one mobile number or email address between the two of them, you will need to collect the data from the parent whose contact details you do not have.

When you search for the email address or mobile number that 'already exists', you may find that the same user appears from the Rejected Records Report. If this happens, it means the contact exists in your MIS more than once and was likely duplicated due to having two students at your school. You will need to remove the duplicate and link the two students to the one record. You can contact your MIS provider if you need help with completing this.

Reason 3: Parent requires a forename/surname:

Please ensure the parents have a forename (column 'J') and a surname (column 'K') within your MIS – if you are not sure of their first or surname, an initial or even a dot will work!

Reason 4: Parent requires a forename. Parent requires a surname. Parent requires a contact ID. Parent requires either an email address or mobile number or both:

We will only bring across contacts that have 'Parental Responsibility' ticked in your MIS system. Ensure Parental Responsibility is ticked within the contact profile, and re-import the Parent & Student report.

Reason 5: Parent requires a contact ID:

Every contact that is imported to ParentMail must have a specific code to identify them. You will need to populate column ‘C’ and ‘L’ to fix this rejection.


3) Import Successful (warning only):

Reason 1: Email address/mobile number is not valid:

This result will show when either an email address (column 'M') or mobile number (column 'N') is incorrect, therefore, messages will not reach the intended recipient. You will need to update this in your MIS system and re-upload your import.

Reason 2: Unknown personal relationship type: Other. Using Parent instead:

This contact has been added to ParentMail with a 'Parent' user type. The reason this contact was added is due to them having parental responsibility ticked. If this is correct, please ignore the rejection. If it's incorrect, untick 'Parental Responsibility' in your MIS for the contact and remove the contact from ParentMail by locating them withing Users > List and select Actions > Delete.

Reason 3: Parent title not valid:

This is only a notification and optional for action to be taken. This is when the parent title (column 'I') is invalid – the parent will be added without a title. You can update the title in your MIS system or leave it for the parent to update when they register an account.

Please note: When parents receive the registration email/text, they will be given the opportunity to amend any details that are incorrect or insert data that is missing, therefore, as long as you have sufficient contact information to send them the registration link via email or text, you may choose to let them update their own information accordingly.

Registers**

Important: Any new students and staff that are added to ParentMail will not automatically be added to your dinner/clubs register. These steps are to be followed after your Summer Roll Up process has been completed and only if you are using Registers.

Please Note: When you have removed your leaver students, they will be automatically removed off the Register. If you need to view any historical data, navigate to Registers > Register Activity, tick the 'show deleted' checkbox, then search for the student and all activity can be viewed by clicking the blue balance.


Adding new students to the Register

To add new students to the register, navigate to Registers > Registers in the left-hand menu, select the relevant register and click Actions > Edit Register. A new window will appear, click the green Add Members button and select the new students to be added in using the contact book:

Once you have selected the new students to be added, ensure you confirm and save the changes.

The students will be added to the default price band. To change this, open the Edit Register window and click the Pencil icon to the right of the price band name and select the relevant students to be added to the selected price band:

After the price band changes have been made, refresh your browser update the account (click F5 on your keyboard).

Congratulations! Your summer roll-up process is now complete. Your new students, parents and staff will be added to the system.

All new contacts with an email address will automatically be sent an email registration link. If a parent is already registered with another child at the school, they will automatically be linked to the new child. They do not need to register to be connected to the new child. They will see the new child appear once you send communication regarding the new child (an email, SMS, payment item, etc).

If your parents do not have email addresses, we advise that you turn on 'SMS verification' in your Settings (Settings > General, select enable SMS verification) to make sure that all your new parents get a registration text.

Please note: Enabling SMS verification will cost you text credits.