This appendix describes circumstances under which the diploma categories shown for a student in provincial reports such as the Status Sheet, Ontario Student Transcript, and Seconary Report Card differ from those show on the PowerSchool Graduation Planner Progress screen.
Difference In Processing Capabilities
- PS GP Progress deals with one individual student a time. Reporting must deal with entire schools and performance and is just as important as accuracy.
- PS Progress can investigate multiple strategies for the student's graduation plan and choose the strategy based on best-fit, dropping all the rest. Reporting is based on stateful processing - once a record has been added in SQL, it cannot be backed out without affecting space and performance.
Differences In Outcome Between PowerSchool (PS) And Provincial Reporting
If there is more than one credit strategy listed in the course for the same graduation plan, PS will use a look-ahead heuristic to determine best-fit based on the priority levels of the matching credit categories. Ontario reporting will determine best fit based on category order defined on the graduation planner.
Take for example, two credit strategies used in the same graduation plan.
- MAS -> Senior Math -> Optional Credits
- MAT -> Other Math -> Optional Credits
Course A had both credit strategies in the credit_types, listed in the order 'MAS', 'MAT'. The student has previously earned credit in Other Math.
- Provincial Reporting: Because the order in which the credit is applied is based on the graduation plan category order not the credit type list order and since Senior Mathematics is first on the planner, it follows MAS -> Senior Math and assigns the credit to Senior Math. MAT is ignored.
- PowerSchool: MAS -> Senior Math was not fulfilled and applies the credit to Senior Math.
Course B had both credit strategies in the credit_types, listed in the order 'MAT', 'MAS'. The student has previously earned credit in Other Math.
- Provincial Reporting: Because the order in which the credit is applied is based on the graduation plan category order not the credit type list order and since Senior Mathematics is first on the planner, it follows MAS -> Senior Math and assigns the credit to Senior Math. MAT is ignored. as you see the order of the credit strategy has no effect.
- PowerSchool: PS applies a look-ahead strategy on both 'MAT' and 'MAS'. Since MAS -> Senior Math (1 priority level) is a better fit than MAT -> Other Math -> Optional Credits (2 priority levels), PS assigns the credit to Senior Math.
It is recommended that only one credit strategy for each grad plan setup be specified in the credit_type list to avoid confusion between PS and Reporting.
For PS, potential credits take precedence over earned credits in the GP Progress.
A credit category may have been satisfied by the students earned credits from previous courses taken. If the student is currently taking courses with potential credit for the same credit category, the earned credits are 'bumped' out or dropped down to other categories in favor the course with potential credit.
Once the potential credits have become earned credits the earlier credits remain bumped out or dropped entirely.
Example, if the student has taken the following courses with earned credit:
- T1J1O - AC3 -> Group 3 -> Optional (credit earned 2012)
- SNC1D - SNC -> Science -> Optional (credit earned 2013)
- SPH3U - SNC3 -> Science -> Group 3 -> Optional (credit earned 2014)
- T1J1O will be assigned to Group 3
- SNC1D will be assigned to Science
- SPH3U will be assigned to Optional as both Science and Group 3 have been fulfilled
- T1J1O will be assigned to Optional
- SNC1D will be assigned to Science
- SPH3U will be assigned to Group 3
This is because SPH3U was currently enrolled in by the student in 2014 and therefore 'bumped' T1J10 to Optional. Once earned, this becomes how it is assigned. (The interesting thing to note, is that if the student does not earn credit for SPH3U, T1J1O will be reassigned back to Group 3)
Optional Credit Category Differences
The last credit category (Optional Credits). If the credit requirement is 12, PS will apply all the earned credits based on classes the student took, then drop the earliest ones in favor of current classes with potential credits in order to meet, but not exceed, the credit minimum of 12.
Reporting will apply all the earned credits from classes the student took, as well as classes with potential credits. Reporting will continue to add class credits to the Optional Credits even if it exceeds the credit minimum of 12. (Custom requirement from ON)
Reporting will apply all earned credits from classes with no credit strategy (or credit strategies that does not meet this student's graduation progress) to the Optional Credits category. (Custom requirement from ON)