Blog 14 - SIMS

What data does Milk read from SIMS?

Let’s start by explaining a very fundamental detail about Milk Student Planner System’s connection to SIMS – it’s essentially a ‘read-only’ interface.

The data types Milk reads are as follows:

  • Basic school info (name, address, head teacher)

  • Subject list

  • Term dates

  • List of classes (including reg classes)

  • Student details – only those required by Milk

  • Teacher details

  • Parent details (from contacts, where available)

  • Timetables (students and teachers)

  • Attendance

  • Behaviour & Achievement points

  • Assessment grade sets & results (only those Marksheets which are set up for Zinet, as per PDF instructions)

  • Photos (students and teachers)

Many of the above options can be disabled from within the Milk configuration options in the Zinet Connect* software. However, we advise that they all be switched on. Note that teacher photos cannot be seen by students.
*Zinet Connect is Milk’s preferred connector software, allowing data to be imported from SIMS and other leading MIS.

System Requirements

Milk works with data from your school’s SIMS database and in order to do that a small software component needs to be installed. The server software component has been produced in partnership with Zinet Data Solutions. It forms an interface between the MIS and Milk. The requirements are:

  • A Capita SIMS installation running on Windows Server
  • Windows Server 2003, 2008, 2008 R2, 2012
  • .NET 4.0 or 4.5

Installation

Please follow instructions in the 1st attached PDF file. By running the installer please note you are accepting the License Agreement and Terms and Conditions that are presented to you.

Overview

  • Install ZiNET Connect software on the same server as SIMS is running.
  • Create a new user in SIMS for ZiNET to login as (e.g. username ‘zinetconnect’)
  • Configure ZiNET with these login details along with the SIMS server and database name.
  • Configure ZiNET with the school’s Milk login credentials attached
  • Trigger a data export manually so we receive the first set of data.
  • Configure Assessment Reports via ‘Mark Sheets’ in SIMS – (see PDF #2)

Running an export

Once you have set up the software as per the PDF instructions you need to manually run the first export:

  • Open the Zinet Console
  • Select the “STN.MILKAPP” service.
  • Select Application -> Tasks -> Integration , then click Run Export

Data will be extracted from SIMS and uploaded to Milk. The full process typically takes around 30 minutes. The ZiNET service will be automatically scheduled the export to run in the early hours of each morning.

The first time around

Once we have received all of the data we will run an import to generate Milk user accounts. We will then share those account details with you in spreadsheet format. In a forthcoming update we will be able to automatically activate accounts via email, however this is dependent on you having email addresses associated with accounts in SIMS, and is optional.

Support

If you have any problems, our tech support team are always ready to help and are best connected at support@milkstudentplanner.com