Counselors' Questions About Transcript Changes from SASI to PowerSchool

Last updated 8/13/12


Q: Can the grades be arranged by semester as in SASI?

A: Short answer: Not really. PowerSchool reports by store code (i.e. Q1, S1, T1). For each store code there must be a column. Grades are displayed in these columns with one of four sort options: Course Name, Course Number, Credit Type or Ascending By Grade Level and Course Number. We selected the latter option because it came as close as we could get to showing the old grades in blocks by semester as they did in SASI. There are too many variables in terms of store codes and number of courses per term or grade level in AAPS stored grades to make a transcript identical to that in SASI given the strictures imposed by the PowerSchool object reporting engine. What we can do is plan for continuing dialog with counselors to make improvements and look for ways to get the information required to you with the tools built into PowerSchool.

Q: Can the credits and term GPA be listed with each block of grades?

A: No. However, it is possible to list them in their own section on the transcript. If we can reduce the space taken by required items, we may be able to fit this onto the transcript or, failing that, create an alternate 2-page transcript that includes this information. We can also use the available slots on the cumulative info page to display a GPA and credit count by term. We did an example for Community but have not gotten any feedback yet about whether it was useful. Will happily cook up the same system for other schools by request if you would like to try it out.

Update: We added these summaries on the aforementioned AAPS-Docufide transcript draft.

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Q: Can summer school classes be listed at the end of the year in which they were earned instead of in a separate area?

A: They were initially listed this way but feedback from buildings led us to believe separating these credits actually made following the students' recovery of credits simpler.

Update: Summer School credit is now stored in term 'S0' and has it's own section on the AAPS-Docufide Transcript

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Q: Can classes be listed numerically rather than alphabetically?

A: Yes but because the course numbering system was changed from that used in SASI, course numbers were not imported for classes taken before the 2008-2009 school year. Attempting to sort all courses by number will be a bust for at least a few more years until all the students who started HS in SASI finally age out. 

PowerSchool allows us to sort courses within a given store code by Course Name, Course Number, Credit Type or Ascending By Grade Level and Course Number (we currently use the latter). Using credit types (aka graduation requirement categories) might be a useful alternative sorting option until all historical grades are on the new numbering system.

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Q: How are 'repeat' classes flagged?

A: Same basic procedure as SASI: Repeats will be identified with the (R1) or (R2) as in SASI. However, the 'flag' will be manually made part of the course name since there is no separate mechanism to record it in PS and the records clerk must manually change the original record so that it will not count in the GPA.

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Q: Is there a way to include a credit summary as part of the transcript?

A: Yes but not in the nice way that it is presented on the Graduation Progress page or the built-in Graduation Progress report available on the Reports menu. Because courses can count in more than one category and we are limited in the formulas we can build, anything we cook up will require scrutiny to make sure the same classes is not being double-counted.

Update: Consider using the built in 'Graduation Progress' report. If printed duplex, it will come up one sheet per student.

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Q: Do algebra or other classes that meet HS grad requirements which are taken in middle school appear on the HS transcript?

A: Yes, provided that the course has been identified as meeting a graduation requirement by having the correct credit types added to the course information, MS courses may be made to appear on the HS transcript and count in graduation requirements.

Update: A 'Notes' section on the AAPS-Docufide Transcript holds these courses now and footnotes on the form identify the classes as being HS credit taken in MS.

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Q: Why do some of the transfer in courses seem to disappear? Is there a fix?

A: This is a bug that Pearson is aware of. If the same course number is used more than once in the same store code, the second listing of the info will not print on the transcript. We use a series of 'dummy' course numbers to enter transfer in credit from previous high schools so that we can check graduation requirements and present a fairly unified transcript for students. For example, if in 07-08 a student has course 993133 Elective TI that was renamed to 'Intro to Business' with an S1 and S2 stored grade. That year they also have a second 993133 entry named 'Intro to Autos' with an S1 and S2 grade. On the printed transcript, the name of the first entry prints but the second course name does not though the grades do appear. The workaround is to delete the course number of the second entry.

Update: Still a bug that Pearson has not fixed.

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