We have now added the ability to manage rooming using Room Pools. We use this feature to categorise rooms which may be similar in their use but just as importantly, to tell the software that certain rooms are 'Specialist Rooms' and must not be assigned to general teaching groups. For example, it would not be appropriate for the Gym to be assigned to 1CSPE-A (year 1 CSPE) or any other general subject. We place the Gym in a pool so that it will be treated differently by the software during automatic room assignment.
Let us take for example a school with 4 Science Laboratories. The school can create a Science Room Pool called LABS. We can easily add the 4 science laboratories to this pool. A science teacher might require a room for their science class but might not be particular as to which room they are assigned as long as it is one of the Science Labs.
In this scenario, when building the curriculum for timetabling in the Class Data Screen of Timetable Construction, we can enter LABS as the room and it will allocate one of the rooms in that pool for that teacher.
- Adding a room to a Room Pool will classify that room as a Specialist Room and it will no longer be regarded as a General Classroom.
- Only General Classrooms are assigned by the Automatic Room Assigner unless a Specialist Room (or a Room Pool containing a Specialist Room) are entered under a Room field of a Teaching Group in the Class Data Screen. (See screenshot below)
In the above screenshot, Room 10 is a lab (R10) and would be assigned to this Biology Teaching Group even though is it a specialist room under the LABS Room Pool.
Alternatively, entering 'LABS' as in the screenshot below might assign R10 or any other room that is a member of the Room Pool called 'LABS'.
Rooms should only be automatically assigned after the timetable has been constructed.