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Setting Up Letters

The following procedures provide an overview of the process to set up letters for eSchoolPlus.

Define letters settings

For Discipline, Attendance, and Medical, there are letter settings that you need to define to control the merge file name and print letters in multiple languages.

  1. In the appropriate configuration, define how the building processes letters. The values entered in the letter setup fields determine the name and directory expected for your form letter template files and the kinds of information to be included in the letters. For the letters program to perform correctly, the values in these fields must be selected appropriately.
    The field names that display on the Configuration Setup pages are different, the following list does not identify the field names.
    • Enter the filename for the form letter.
    • Select whether letters will be sent in multiple languages.
    • If you print letters in multiple languages, enter the list of language codes for which you will send letters.
    • Select the district-defined screen from which you want to pull district-defined information.

Enter Student and Contact information for letters

  1. Make sure the mailing flags are set appropriately for each student (Registration > Entry & Reports > Student Demographic > Addresses). If you only want letters to go to parents, the students' flags for mailings should be unchecked.
    This step is not necessary when setting up the HAC Login and Password letter.
  2. Make sure the mailing flags are set appropriately for the student's contacts (Registration > Entry & Reports > Student Demographic > Contacts). Each contact flagged to get a mailing will get a separate letter.
  3. If you are using letters in multiple languages and the contact should receive a letter in the language specified in the contact's Language of Correspondence field, make sure the Use Language for Mailings checkbox is selected.
    This step is not necessary when setting up the HAC Login and Password letter.
  4. If you are going to merge the letter as an email in Microsoft Word, make sure that email addresses are entered for contacts and that the Use Email for Mailings checkbox is selected for contacts to whom you want to send emails.

Create form letter file

  1. Use the appropriate criteria option to define and maintain the criteria that determine which students should receive letters.
    • Attendance: Attendance > All > Attendance Communications > Attendance Criteria Setup
    • Behavior: Interventions > All > Behavior Communications > Behavior Criteria Setup
    • Medical: Administration > Medical Setup > Setup > Immunization Criteria
    • Success Plan: Administration > Interventions Setup > At Risk > Test Scores At Risk Setup
      This step is not necessary when setting up the HAC letter.
  2. Use the appropriate options to create a sample data file for a limited number of students. Refer to Processing Letters, for information about the options you need to run to calculate letters and create the data file.
  3. Determine the local directory where you will store all letter templates and to which you will download the data files when generating letters. We recommend that all files for the mail merge be stored within the same directory.
  4. Transfer the file to the letter directory on your local machine. Use the browser options to save the file to the directory.
    To locate the download file, click Tasks/Reports on the Navigation bar. The file will be listed on the Tasks and Reports page's Reports panel.
  5. If the default file name includes the date and time the file was created, rename the file as needed. This file name is used as the data source for your merge file so it must match what you used when defining your form letter. For example, you may remove the date and time and add building number to the name if each building has a different form letter.
  6. Create your form letter templates in Microsoft Word and connect the document to the data file. When you connect the data source, select the delimiters for the file. Select the following options:
    Field Delimiter: | (pipe)
    Record Delimiter: # (pound sign)
  7. For Behavior and Attendance, if you use different letters for different criteria, then you must write a separate letter in Word for each criterion and language code. In addition you must write a primary letter that includes a command to merge student data to the appropriate letter file. For more information, refer to Microsoft Word Form Letters Overview.
  8. In your form letter templates, you will include merge codes to include application information and information from Student Demographics. The letters can include fields for each student's name, address, parent or guardian names, application information, and district-defined screen information.
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