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Synchronize data

Classroom Manager will allow you to Synchronize Classroom classes and class lists with data exported from your School Information System (SIS).

SIS data Sheets

Classroom Manager creates three sheets in the spreadsheet to hold the SIS data. They are sisCls, sisTchrs and sisStdnts.

These data are imported through the SIS data import process described below.

Classroom Manager also creates two additional sheets otherStaff and otherStdnts with these sheets you can manually add data about additional staff and students who you want to include in the classes even though they are not included in the class in the SIS data.

Importing SIS data

Open the Classroom Manager Admin Menu

Select Students and Teachers Data

Click on "get SIS data" button

A pop up window will open

There is a column for each of the 3 sheets you need to populate

For each one paste the URL of the spreadsheet file into the URL field

Sheet Name will turn into a drop down selector - you can select the name of the sheet in the file which holds the classes data

The remaining fields will turn into select fields allowing you to select the column heading that matches the data you want to import

The field names with the * are optional

Syncing the Data

Once you have imported your SIS data you can set up an automated process to keep your gsfe data in sync with your SIS data.

Sync parameters are set in the Sync Classroom Settings menu

To open that menu

  • Open the Classroom Manager Admin Menu

  • Select Domain Admin

  • Select sync/Trigger

Sync Settings

The menu has 5 sections

Filters for getting GSFE classes data - the settings you used when you last imported GSFE classes data will be shown here - you can over-write them

Sync Settings - You can choose what to base the sync on - Class name only, Class and section together or Description Heading. You can also choose whether to identify Classes to add and remove. If you set this field to Yes if the sync identifies classes to be removed it will put a Y in the delete column of the gsfeCls page. if it identifies classes to be created it will add the details in a new row in the gsfeCls sheet. The sysnc process will also identify teachers and students to add and remove and update the gsfeTchrs and gsfeStdnts accordingly. The remaining fields allow you to specify whether those changes should be actioned automatically or after a manual review

Schedule for starting download and Sync - You can choose to run the sync process daily, weekly or monthly. You can also choose which data should be downloaded as part of the sync and which should be a manual download. If you choose to import SIS data automatically the process will use the settings you specified in the getSIS data menu.

Schedule for getting assignment and announcement DETAILS - You can specify whether this process should run Manually or scheduled weekly or monthly. This will start a process to get details of Announcements and Assignments for all the classes listed in the gsfeCls page. This data will be pasted into the allAssignments and allAnnouncements page

Schedule for getting assignment and announcement NUMBERS - here you can specify whether this process should run Manually or scheduled weekly or monthly. This will start a process to get the numbers of Students, Announcements and Assignments for all the classes listed in the gsfeCls page. This data will be pasted into the gsfeCls page.

IMPORTANT - information about triggers

When you have changed the settings you can click on the button at the bottom of the window to switch triggers on or off. If the trigger is switched on a job will run every hour to check whether the scheduled jobs you have requested should be started. Google only allows add-ons to run a script for 6 minutes once an hour. The scripts are set to run for six minutes then stop, then resume an hour later and continue until the job is complete. For the jobs shown above it will process the instructions in this order

Get gsfeCls >> getgsfeTchrs >> get gsfeStdnts >> get SIS data >> sync the data to identify changes needed >> add classes >> add teachers >> add students >> remove teachers >> remove students >> get assignment and announcement numbers >> get Assignment and Announcement details

The time it takes to complete all these tasks will be dependent on how many classes you are processing and how much data there is. it is possible to speed up the process by running the script in multiple spreadsheets. But please be aware that the maximum runtime for scripts called by triggers for any individual user is 360 minutes. It would be worthwhile experimenting with these scripts to check what can get done in the time you are allowed.

Extracting data from my School's SIS

The School Information System which my school uses is SIMS. The document on the right explains how I extract data from that system to update Google Classroom

Classroom Update Process