Video Appointments: Admins: Configure an Evening to be held over video call

This article shows you how to configure your evening to allow teachers and parents to conduct appointments with parents via video, rather than meeting face-to-face. 

There is a video overview for admins at the foot of this help article.

How does this work?

Appointments for your evening are booked in the normal manner (by parents booking their own appointments online, or admins/teachers booking them on their behalf. See here for more details). When the Evening is due to start the parents and teachers log into the system and can virtually "meet" via video. When parents have joined a video call this is automatically recorded in the attendance report.

Guides, including videos, for you to supply to them are linked below:

For Teachers: Teachers - How to run your appointments over video call

For Parents: Video: Parents - How to attend appointments over video call

Requirements: In order to make video calls Parents and Teachers need to have as a minimum:

  • a device with a microphone and speaker/headphones and a compatible web browser
  • if teachers will access video calls from within the school network, ensure the IT Team allows access as per the Network Requirements for Firewalls and Web-Filters guide

We recommend:

  • Using your smartphone for video appointments. If you don't have a smartphone with a front-facing camera, use a laptop or computer with a webcam.
  • Using a headset (or earphones with a microphone) to reduce echo.
  • Please use one of the following compatible web browsers:

    iPhone/iPad: Safari
    Android: Chrome or Firefox
    Windows: Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge (Chromium) - download here
    Mac: Safari, Chrome or Firefox
    Linux: Chrome or Firefox

Remember that parents aren't automatically notified when the event is created, you do that via your school's usual method of communication. If you've been using the system for a while, and your parents are familiar with how it works, you could also use Reminders to alert parents to the fact that they can book on a new event, or to remind them of existing bookings.

Configuring your Evening to hold video appointments

  1. Log into your system as an administrator, click Evenings on the navigation bar on the left,
    Select Configure Evening from the menu on the evening in question.
  2. In the Basic Details section go to Video Calls and tick the Appointments will happen over video call box.Click Save at the bottom of the screen.Your Evening is now be set up to run over video calls.

    All other details of setting up an evening are covered in this guide: Setting up a new Parents' Evening

Note: this setting applies to all appointments on the evening, you cannot have a mix of in-person and video appointments.

Parents will automatically be marked as present as soon as they have pressed the Start Appointment button for their first appointment, and Start Next Appointment for each consecutive appointment. You will be able to find out if a parent has attended the appointments by going to Evening > Manage Appointments. 

Video Appointments support a maximum of three teachers per call. The teachers can all sign in from different places simultaneously. Please see our help article here to assign multiple teachers to a class. If you'd like some parents to be able to book appointments with a member of staff that does not usually teach their child - such as the Special Education Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo), the Headteacher, or specialist teacher(s) please see this guide.

Parents can grant a additional parent/guardian access to their video appointments. Then can sign in from different places simultaneously. The details of how they do this are explained at the foot of the parent guide, which you can supply direct to your parents - they do not need to be logged in to view it.

Note that a call can have a maximum of 4 people in it at any one time. In cases where a school has assigned 3 teachers to take joint appointments for a class, a parent can still invite a guest, but once the number of participants in the call reaches 4 no further people can join it (unless one of them leaves).

video overview for admins

Video Parents Evening Demonstration from SchoolCloud on Vimeo.

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