Parents to resolve absences online

Alex McNab

A new system for submitting parent notes has recently gone live on the Parent Portal. With the new electronic note sending system, when  students have an unresolved absence on their record, a parent is automatically sent an email notification informing them of the absence. The system was created over the summer by software development manager Alan Homan and his team of programmers.

Upon receiving the email, parents can go to the Parent Portal page on the school website, click on the student info tab and then click on the attendance link. This will lead parents to a page with a tab labeled “Unresolved.” Parents select that tab to view the absence. After clicking on the absence, parents tag it as either caused by a planned appointment or an illness and are then allowed to write a short explanation note, which is automatically submitted to attendance coordinator Gabriel Preciado through the school’s Didax program.

When Preciado sees the note, he then either resolves the absence or asks the parents to provide more information regarding the absence.

A log of all note entries is kept and can be viewed by parents in order to prevent students from faking notes. However, parents are advised to keep their Parent Portal passwords a secret to prevent forgery.

If an absence remains unresolved for over two days, an email notification is automatically delivered to give the student enough time to resolve the absence before a detention is enforced.

However, the program  cannot be used to send advance notice of an absence. The class first has to be missed and the absence registered, and a separate note has to be written for each day missed.

“I’m really excited about this process,” Preciado said.  “We all have busy lives.”