A: One of the most common timetable queries we receive is that the file has nearly reached it's target but is getting stuck and is not budging.
The key to removing this blockage and getting to 100% is providing the solver with as much flexibility as you possibly can. Click here for the in depth article on the topic or read about it in our blog post. Here are a number of quick tips to get you started.
- Clone your timetable
- Clear your grid
- Fill in teacher sets as extensively as you can
- Do not manually assign rooms or lessons unless absolutely necessary. Only assign specialist rooms (eg Woodwork Room, Labs) to lessons that absolutely need them. In the case of science subjects only assign labs to practical lessons (doubles) and not to all
- Make use of room pools
- If classes have been manually assigned got to screen 6. Teacher and unpin any classes that have been assigned to a specific teacher that could realistically be taught by another. Then go to Actions > Allocate Teachers
- Do not put individual teacher restrictions in place unless absolutely necessary. Restrictions can severely hamstring a timetable, particularly if a teacher with restrictions teaches lessons in blocks as this has the knock on effect of tying up every other teacher involved with the same restriction
- If, when you press generate, nothing happens it is most likely because a) you have a restriction in place and haven't selected times for it or b) you have assigned too many rooms manually. You can check room allocation on screen 5. Class Data by going to Actions > Room Demands. If there are number of rooms almost at full usage even before you click generate, it is unlikely that you will get very far
- Keep as many classes in core as you possibly can