Friday, December 14, 2007

Open Source Geeks at Schools, take note

Open Administration for Schools 2.50, an open source, web based, school administration package is now available from:

This version has many new updates, features, etc. outlined below:

1) Single Site SSL - OA will now run on the Apache SSL server to give encrypted communication between web browser and server. As a result, it has been updated to run as a single site per school (since SSL precludes the use of easy virtual sites).

Andy Figueroa, besides figuring out how to do it, and testing the results, has also written the docs for a clean debian/ubuntu server install for this.

2) Fee System - improvements to make this system more useful. It's still a baby in developmental terms. It has a new outstanding fees report with family totals; an additional receipts field to simplify transaction structures and rewritten payments and invoice scripting.

3) Transcript system - a new transcript system that can generate multiple page per student transcripts (with identical cool looks as previously).

4) Report Card system - a new rewritten report card script that has even more configuration options and now has a GPA setting. The code has been rewritten to make it more flexible (and configurable).

5) Rewritten student enrollment scripting to allow better looking editing and to support the 18 additional student fields. It also has a new 'Clone' function to clone other family members to speed up student enrollment.

6) Rewritten pdf generation reports to support alternate language characters (normally Spanish or French) in generated pdf's. This makes use of the input encoding module of LaTeX.

7) Pop up calendar for date entry on Attendance and Main pages (from the folks) (and scripts updated to support this)

8) A new Custom Staff Report (analogous to the custom classlist report).

9) Beginning support for alternate paper sizes rather than just letter paper (ie. A4) as used by schools outside of North America. It is an additional configuration option in master configuration file (defaultpapersize).

10) New single field reset system (called 'bulk updates' on the Start/End of Year page) to reset a single field in all student records, etc. This replaced the large number of separate scripts.

11) And other fixes and improvements to improve the code and better support languages other than English.

Les Richardson, Open Admin for Schools

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