Reimagining Dismissal Workflows with G Suite

Many schools are likely reviewing their dismissal plans for next year ensuring they comply with social distancing guidelines. I’ve been thinking a lot about how our existing communication tools can help ensure a safe and efficient process for all students and families.

This approach uses Google Forms, Google Sheets, and Google Hangouts Chat seamlessly linked with some Apps Script to digitize a scalable and flexible workflow. The process begins at the car line. Each student is assigned a pin number, preferably visible from outside the car. Dismissal staff equipped with smart phones or other mobile device submits the pin number into a Google Form. The data is timestamped and logged in a Google Sheet, and further distributed to class specific sheets. Assuming students will be called from their classroom, the teacher or staff member supervising the students could be monitoring their class specific Google Sheet. Once the student’s name appears in the Google Sheet, they will know to send them down. The Google Sheets can be automatically cleared each night to be ready for the next day.

In addition to real-time updates of a Google Sheet, a script sends a message to a Dismissal Hangouts Google Chat saying who should be sent for dismissal. This opens a thread for two-way communication between car line staff and the staff inside the classrooms, without the constant chatter over walkie-talkies or PA system.

7 thoughts on “Reimagining Dismissal Workflows with G Suite

  1. Ashley Turnbull Reply

    Hi, How did you get the information to populate into the Google sheet (i.e. other info besides their PIN number?). It appears to populate the name in addition to the PIN number. Is that some type of code or formula? Thanks!

    • Richard Anderson Post authorReply

      Yes, there’s another sheet containing all of the data. A formula looks up the rest of the data based on the pin number submission.

  2. Leslie Drake Reply

    Could you share the formula that you used to assign the number to populate with the students name?

    • Richard Anderson Post authorReply

      There are several, but they look like this:

      ={“First Name”;arrayformula(iferror(vlookup($C$2:$C,Students!$A$2:$E,3,FALSE)))}

      All pulling from a mastersheet that has all of the data.

  3. Allison Saber Reply

    This looks like a lifesaver, our pick up procedure has completely changed and quadrupled!

    I am not familiar enough with google sheets to build this out myself, but our district does use g suite. Would you be able to share a blank copy that I could then populate with our students info?

    Thank you!

    • Richard Anderson Post authorReply

      This is a bit more complicated than a blank template. If your school is interested in some consulting services, I’d be happy to help.

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