PT: Require parents to enter a password

Jan 23, 2018

Generally SOBS Parent/Teacher interview booking works very successfully without requiring parents to have passwords, and in practice the vast majority of schools using this system use it without this requirement. However, for those schools who want to ensure a parent’s password is required then this option is available.

Configuring this option

There are a couple of configuration options and then it is simply a matter of loading a list of parents.

  1. Navigate to the ‘School Settings’ page and the ‘PT’ tab
  2. Edit this page to enable the option ‘Require parent password’ and click ‘Save’
  3. Navigate to the ‘School Settings’ page and the ‘Authentication’ tab
  4. Edit this page to complete the content of the Guest email (at the bottom of the page).  As parent records are imported the system will generate random passwords and send emails to each parent with their username and password.  Modify the text of the Guest email to suit your school’s requirements and click ‘Save’.  There are a few tokens that are automatically replaced prior to the email being sent: %USERNAME% will be the parents username (which should be their email address); %PASSWORD% will be the generated password; %URL% will be the URL that links them directly to the parent access page to enter their username (email address); %EMAIL% is also available, however we recommend this is the same value as the username.

Loading the parent information

The last step is to import a list of parents – the main requirement is the parent email address.  The format of the import file is identical to the user import file which is described in detail in this article: User management

  1. Create your import file – this should include parent emails address in the email field.  The username should also contain the email address as the unique identifier.  The password in the file is not required as the system can generate the password prior to sending the parent an email.  The security should be “0” and the change password option is not required for booking P/T interviews.
  2. Navigate to the ‘Import/Export’ page
  3. Click the Import | User radio button – a list of options will appear
  4. Check the option for “New guest accounts – reset password and email account details”
    1. If the parent record being imported is new (based on the username) this option will generate a random 6 character password and email the username and password to the parent’s email address.
    2. If the parent record already exists then the password is not generated or reset and no email is sent.
  5. When importing please be aware that there are two passes of the data – the first pass checks the data being imported and tests whether there will be any problems importing this information.  The second pass actually creates the records in the database and generates any emails to be sent.

Using the Parent Access

When parents get their information they should still use the regular parent access system to book their interviews – the URL is available for inclusion in the email that is sent.  The primary difference is that after they have entered their email address they will be prompted to enter a password.

What if…

The parent can’t login:

  • Check that the parent access is enabled (check carefully the time for opening, booking stops and closing)
  • Check the email address and password they are using
  • Check that the parent is at the right school – the school name appears in the top right of the screen
  • Check that the parent is at the correct URL
  • Try resetting the password
    • as the Sobs administrator go into the ‘Staff’ page
    • locate the parent’s record (by default the ‘Staff’ page only lists users with ‘Staff’ security and above, use the ‘Filter options’ button – top right of table – to adjust the filter and include the ‘Guest’ security, this should include all of the parent logins)
    • Edit this record
    • use the ‘Specify a password’ option to type in an individual password for this parent) – save the record and have the parent try again.