Activities (CCA/ECA/ASA) Container FAQ's

What is a Container within an Activities Sign up in SchoolsBuddy?

When creating an activities sign up within SchoolsBuddy you must first create a Container. However, what is a Container?

A Container within SchoolsBuddy is where you create your activities/groups that will be in your Schools activities program.

Containers will usually have within them multiple activities/groups that will relate to your School’s After School Program. For example, the Container may be called: Autumn Term After School Clubs and within this Container, there could be activities such as: basketball club, chess club, fencing club etc. All these activities are also known as groups. Creating the Container is the first phase when creating an activities sign up. The activities Containers are located within the Activities & Clubs Admin however, this tab could be labelled under a different name due to your Schools preferences.

How many Containers are needed within your Schools Activities Program?

In terms of how many Containers are needed for your School’s activities program, you may only need ONE Container. Reasons for multiple Containers have been listed below:

  • You allow students to take part in multiple activities at on the same day. (i.e you have a 3.15 activity time and a 4.30 activity time) OR you have a breakfast / lunchtime clubs. (These must be in different containers)
  • You have different administrators and activities in your School’s activities program for different sections of the school. Eg senior/junior school.
  • Only some of the students are able to submit choices themselves (i.e Junior School students are not able to submit but Senior School students can submit choices then different containers are required)
  • Some groups activities for different age ranges run for a shorter term (i.e Junior School run until Dec 12th, Senior School Dec 19th)
  • You wish to allow signup for different age ranges at different dates. (i.e Junior School 1st Sept – 6th Sept, Senior School 4th Sept – 8th Sept)

If multiple Containers are required then you can setup different Containers for different times slots, areas of the school etc.
Container 1 – Junior School Breakfast Club
Container 2 – Junior School Lunchtime Clubs
Container 3 – Junior School After School Clubs
Container 4 – Senior School Lunchtime Clubs
Container 5 – Senior School 3.15pm After School Clubs
Container 6 – Senior School 4.30pm After School Clubs


Number of Daily Preferences within an Activities Sign Up

When creating an activities container and you have selected a preference based Sign Up, you must enter the maximum amount of daily preferences desired from the signee. What this means if the Pupil/Parent has many activities options on the same day, they can set their desired preference for the individual activity. For example, if the Daily Preferences selected within your activities Sign Up Container is 5, then the Pupil/Parent will have the option to give up to 5 selections in terms of their preferred  activity choice.

1- First Desired Choice

2-Second Desired Choice

3-Third Desired Choice

4-Fourth Desired Choice

5-Fifth Desired Choice

When creating the Activities Sign Up Container you can set as many daily preferences as desired (maximum of 5).

Minimum Weekly Pupil Selections within an Activities Sign Up

When creating an activity Sign Up within SchoolsBuddy you may enter a ‘Minimum Weekly Pupil Selections’ in the Container creation Process. In terms of what ‘Minimum Weekly Pupil Selections’ actually means it refers to how many activity selections the Pupil/Parent must make activities Sign Up. This can work in cohesion with your Schools requirements. For example, requiring 3 minimum weekly pupil selections within your container means parents/pupils can’t submit their choices to you unless they have selected a minimum of 3 activities. This helps increase allocation and participation.

Re-submission of Selections within an Activities Container

You have the option to allow for Pupil/Parent to give re-submission of selections. If this option is selected, this means the Pupil/Parent can edit their preference based choices and make another selection. The Pupil/Parent can perform this function as many times as they like until the sign up closes. Unlike a Google Form, you will only receive a single (the most recent) submission per user.

Post Allocation Join Request within an Activities Container

When creating an activity within the Sign Up Container, there is an option to Allow Post Allocation Join Requests. If this option is selected when creating the activity, this will give the Pupil/Parent the ability to request to join the activity after the Allocation has been made and the events have been generated i.e. mid term/season. The staff member in charge of the activity and the activities administrator will be notified if the activity receives a join request from either a Pupil/Parent.

What are Organisation Block Dates within SchoolsBuddy?

Block dates within SchoolsBuddy are dates in which will automatically block selected dates to stop any Events running on these dates. This is great tool for blocking any Half Term Holidays, School Holidays, National Holidays or Staff Training days. If your School has consistent holidays throughout all sections we recommend you use organisation block dates from the ‘Reception/Registers’ tab.

What are Groups within an Activities Sign up?

A group is a collection of school pupils. An activity will become a group after allocation and event generation, for example, the Group will be ‘After School Senior Football.’ The parents/pupils will choose the activity and if allocated will become a part of that group. Groups are a great tool that are used for communication and organisation between Staff/Organisers, Pupils, and Parents.

Creating a Group within an Activities Container

Within an Activities Container, there are two ways of creating Groups.

The first option is to create a group which will be the activity of the Activity sign up. This is done by manually by entering the details of the activity.

To do this, click the ‘+add’ tab to add the name, description, grade/year, age range and gender that your activity is available to. When creating the group/activity always leave the status blank. This is used at a later stage, during allocation.

The Second option is to copy a group from a previous Activity Sign Up. This is only possible if there has been a previously been an Activity Container with Active groups. To copy them into your Container this is done very easily.


Adding more staff to an Activity/Group within SchoolsBuddy

When creating Activity (groups) within a Container, you may only assign one staff member to that activity (group). However, once the events and been generated/published you then have the option to add more Staff Members to the activity as the group has now been created.

Who receives ECA/CCA communications within SchoolsBuddy

This depends on submits the choices as below:

Parents Submission

SELECTION SUBMISSION: The parent that submits the selections will receive the selection confirmation email. Please note: only this parent will receive even if there are multiple parents linked to the student.

ALLOCATION CONFIRMATION: All parents linked to the student will receive the allocation confirmation email.

Pupil Submission

SELECTION SUBMISSION: The pupil that submits the selection will receive the selection confirmation email. Please note: only the pupil, not the linked parent will receive the selection confirmation.

ALLOCATION CONFIRMATION: Both the pupil and linked parent will receive the allocation confirmation email.

Staff (Manual) Submission – from admin screen. 

SELECTION SUBMISSION: When a Staff member manually selects the choices, no confirmation email is sent to the pupil or parent.

ALLOCATION CONFIRMATION: Both pupil and parent will receive an allocation confirmation email when the allocation process is complete.


How do I allocate activities once the sign up is closed? 

Once an Activities sign up is closed, you must then allocate activities/groups to your pupils. 

Publishing allocations to Parents and Pupils within SchoolsBuddy

Once Activity selections have been made (either manually or by parents/pupils) the events must be published in order for the Activities to become active. Once published, the events will become visible in the Diary’s of the relevant staff member/pupils/parents.

When the Group allocations have been finalised, to publish the events select the Generate Events tab. 

Taking Activities Registers within SchoolsBuddy

Once allocations have been published and the events generated, the events will now be created within the core system of SchoolsBuddy. There are two ways in which Registers can be taken from the web either in the Event Organising screen (if you are the lead organiser) or from the Reception/Registers tab.