Santa Maria Catholic College
Santa Maria College is nestled in picturesque gardens overlooking the Swan River in Attadale, Western Australia and is a Years 5 – 12 Catholic school for girls, both day and boarding with 1280 students including 150 boarders. Santa Maria offers a quality education inspired by Jesus Christ and the vision of Catherine McAuley.
The vision of Catherine McAuley, foundress of the Sisters of the Mercy, led to the founding of the College in 1938. Since then the Mercy tradition has enabled Santa Maria girls to thrive at school and beyond. The school values of, Hospitality, Compassion, Justice, Service and Excellence, reflect not only the principles of our faith but the values wider society holds dear.
These values informed a desire to improve the College further through smarter timetabling. So in 2018, as a part of Catholic Education Western Australia’s (CEWA) partnership with Edval Timetables, Santa Maria College decided to transition to Edval’s suite of software.
Moving to Edval
As part of the normal onboarding process, Edval migrated the College’s 2018 timetable from their previous timetable system and the College made the commitment for key personnel to attend the 3 days of structured Edval training.
The use of Edval allowed the College to improve the management of its staff with respect to its full and part time staff, delivering better students outcomes for a similar staff FTE. As part of this process, Santa Maria College engaged with Edval Timetable Consultants to investigate the best way to achieve these improvements using the Edval software.
Seeing positive changes
We spoke with the staff at Santa Maria Catholic College to find out how their transition to using Edval was going, as well as any particular improvements they have found with their new smarter timetable.
“I like the ability for students to get more of what they want as well as maximising our staffing. I look forward to this year’s hard work making next year’s process easier.”
John Wray | Campus Dean
Prior to using Edval, the College had used other online software packages. Edval Choice online was far simpler for the students and parents in the selection process.
Edval Choice proved more efficient and accessible for students and parents. It also allowed the school to create a selection process that tailored a student course to coincide with the College offerings.
This approach, along with the ability to request reserve options from students dramatically reduced the time required to collect data, as well as the amount of counselling where a student may not have been placed in a preferred course. The key to success was the College’s understanding of the Edval process and their ability to communicate with parents and students.
Elective Line Generation
One of the most difficult aspects of creating a timetable is the generation of elective/option lines. Edval’s line generation tools enabled the College to investigate limitless possibilities and analyse the impact on student choice, staffing and rooming.
Once elective lines had been generated and classes created, the real power of the algorithms in Edval became apparent when allocating staffing. Edval’s simple, but powerful, staffing tool greatly assisted in allocating the best staffing for the College by ensuring the most suitable teacher was available for each class. In doing this the College obtained savings with better use of its staffing resources.
“It was a far simpler and effective process in identifying staffing, whether it be the addition of staff or identifying areas no longer required.” – John Wray I Campus Dean
The auto – rooming feature of Edval makes an onerous task far simpler and generates a far better solution for staff and students in a fraction of the time. It maximised the use of one room for each class and is always looking for the optimal solution and delivers.
The start of the year has been smooth and the use of Edval Daily makes it easy as the information at hand is comprehensive. Although having just started with Edval Daily, it’s easy access at school or home and the ease of syncing with the Edval file ensures staff and students always have current information with their classes, rooming and the day’s activities.
“A very positive experience overall and provided us with the ability to achieve greater efficiency in terms of student selection and staffing. Support provided was excellent and can see the future benefits that will result from using this program.”
John Wray | Campus Dean