Lessons without teacher or class

In the new Prime Timetable 6.0 it is possible to enter lessons without teacher and/or class. For instance, now you can add "Teachers' meeting" as a lesson without specifying the class, or you can add "Break" for a specific class without setting the teacher.

A lesson without a teacher will not be visible in the master teacher view, whereas a lesson without a class will not be visible in the class view. If there is a card which should display the class and there is no specified class, that card will have no text and will be in gray.

The only requirement for adding a lesson is to set its subject (activity). Teacher(s), class(es) and room(s) are optional.

In the previous version when a lesson is created without specifying the teacher or class, the application added what we called "fake" teacher or "fake" class. Since this was confusing it is now completely removed and automatic timetable generator has been updated to "understand" these types of lessons.

Customizing school timetable template

We have received a lot of feedback on how you would like to represent a lesson in the school timetable software. For example, a university may need to show a teacher, subject and room all in one card in the class view, while in a primary school showing a subject alone is sufficient. A college may need to show only the class in the teacher view (sometimes adding room is desired), while in private schools (e.g. dance school, music school, etc.) there is also a need for adding a subject. Some schools need different order of items; in lots of cases there is a significant difference between showing a lesson in main or in single (individual) timetable. Also, there are numerous requirements for different background colors, card borders, etc. We have come up with a flexible solution that gives a timetabler the full power to set how timetable will be displayed on the screen and on the printed/published page.

Choose ‘Owl > Print > Customize Cards' or just use mouse right click on the timetable card. The opened window shows the enlarged selected card with the options to customize its appearance and style. After any style change, the enlarged card will be refreshed as well as the current view, so you get instant preview of the new appearance.

Customizing class cards

Background card color can be from the current class, teacher, room or subject or you can choose no background color.

Card text can be a group, class, teacher, room or subject name or short name. Selecting the card text from a list will add it to the card, while clicking the text in the enlarged card removes it. Thus you can completely customize the text shown in the card as well as text order.

Card border can be set to: round, square, round (no border) and square (no border). Please note that if you choose no background color and no border you can still drag & drop such a card.

Customizing teacher cards

The best part is that all style changes are preserved and saved into the current timetable document as a timetable template. So, once you have customized the card appearance and saved timetable changes, the published web page will pick up the new styles as well.

Last but not the least, when you create a new document, all timetable style settings will be copied so you don't have to tweak styles again.

Fake teacher and class in Prime Timetable

In order to enter a lesson the following questions need to be answered: who, what and where? But what if there isn't a class for a lesson (e.g. teacher meetings), or a teacher for a particular activity isn't needed (e.g. school recess, lunch), or there is neither teacher nor class (e.g. sports events)? In Prime Timetable, these non-existing teachers and classes are referred to as "fake".

It is recommended that fake teachers and classes are entered prior to entering a lesson. For instance, add a fake class and subject called "Teacher meeting" and then add a lesson by selecting teachers who attend that meeting and a fake class "Teacher meeting". Another example: add a teacher and subject called "School recess" and then add a lesson by selecting classes that have a recess and a teacher called "School recess".

When you enter a lesson without specifying a teacher or a class, Prime Timetable will create a "Fake teacher" or "Fake class" for you.

Every resource that has short name set to "-" (minus sign) is considered fake. Fake lessons is any lesson that contains fake resource and can be excluded from automatic timetable generator in Help > Options.

You can be very creative in creating fake teachers and classes so that every school lesson/activity is displayed in all timetable views as a card available for manual adjusting, e.g. drag & drop. Additionally, fake teachers and classes can have their time request specified which automatic timetable generator can also take into account.

In a nutshell, sometimes fake can genuinely improve your timetable ;).