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About Programs

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For more information on programs, click the appropriate question below.

What is a program?

A program is a group of fields for storing dates to track student participation in a service or educational program. When a student's program information changes, you enter a start or end date in the student's related Programs page to enable the system to track the days of participation.

For example, if your district has set up the Personal page's Meal Status field as a source field, you can no longer access the field in the Personal page to change a student's status for receiving reduced meals. Instead, you click the field's program link to open the Programs dialog and enter a start date, which in turn changes the student's status. If the student's participation ends, you can perform this same procedure to enter an end date and if needed, a new start date.

What is a source field?

Source fields are fields on a standard Student Demographic (pages under Registration > Entry & Reports > Student Demographic) or district-defined page that are updated by program tracking. When a source field is tied to a program, you can no longer update the field directly. Instead, you update it by entering dates in its related Programs page or the Programs dialog. You open the Programs dialog by clicking the program link (blue text that is underlined when under the pointer) that displays in place of the source field.

What is a program field?

Program fields are district defined in the Programs Setup page (Administration > Registration Setup > Setup > Program Setup) to track program days in students' Programs pages. When a student begins participation, you enter a start date in this page. When participation stops for a student, you enter an end date. If the program is associated with a source field, your entries update the program's source field.

Why are programs needed?

Most standard Demographic fields store current information for a student but do not maintain a history of the changes that are made. If your state or district needs information for a field during a particular time period, you can set up a program to track it.

Besides being able to track the days of participation, a program can be used to capture the value stored in a field as of a particular date. One advantage of this is that you can change the field as needed and still be able to report the value for the student on the reporting date.

How do I change the value for a source or program-tracked field?

Open the Programs page either by clicking the link that displays for the source field in the student's page or by selecting a program in the Programs List page (Registration > Entry & Reports > Student Demographic > Programs). To change the value, close the record for the current value by entering an end date, and then enter a start date and select the new value. Note that entering an end date, even a future date, ends a program; however, the system will still be able to report the required value for the start/end dates entered.

If you need to update multiple fields for a program, you can access all of them by opening the Programs List page and clicking the link to open the appropriate Programs page. This page displays all the fields in the program. Also, if you change the start and end dates of a "parent" program for a set of fields that have a parent-child relationship, the dates also change for the associated child fields.

What is a parent program?

If needed, a parent-child relationship can be assigned to a program that has multiple fields. In these cases, the primary field is referred to as the parent program, while the linked fields are considered child programs. For example, you could have an English as a Secondary Language program that covers all related services, and each service could have its own program (child) field for tracking start and end dates. If you open the Programs page, all of its related child programs will be grouped together below the parent. You can also identify child programs in this page by the fact that their Program titles are indented, whereas the titles of parent programs are not.

When I open the Programs page for a program, I cannot access the date fields. Why?

The program you are trying to access is absolutely linked, which means it was set up to require that the program's start and end dates matched either the dates for Entry/Withdrawal or the dates of a parent program. As a result, you cannot change the program's start and end dates. To close the program, you must close either the entry/withdrawal record or the parent program. The date fields of an absolutely-linked child program cannot be changed. If you click on the Program name of an absolutely-linked child program, a popover displays what it is absolutely linked to.

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