Arbor Change Log

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January 2023

27th January

Taking attendance

Want all Teachers and TAs to take attendance? With our new Relax take register access option, you can enable all Teachers and Teaching Assistants to take attendance registers for any class!

Apple Pay and Google Pay

If you've purchased the Payments Plus module, you can now give parents the flexibility to pay the way that suits them! No more re-entering card details every time on the Arbor App - click here for further details.

New School Shop Orders dashboard

Our new School > Payments > School Shop dashboard gives you an overview of orders, payments and refunds without needing to click into each item. Plus we've added a new School Shop: Administer permission you can assign to only give access to mark orders as issued or not! You can see more information here: Reconciling and reporting on School Shop purchases

What else is new?

  • We've made two updates to to prevent mistakes and speed things up in the background. First, we've locked the Generate Census button until it's finished generating. When an assessment is deleted from the Annual Policy, you'll see a helpful message, and you won't be able to add it again until it's finished deleting. 
  • We've also optimised filters and tabs. When going to a page we'll load each tab as you click into it, speeding up the loading time. We've also made filters accessible using your keyboard. 
  • We now migrate Medical notes from SIMS into Medical Notes, rather than into Medical conditions. We'll be rolling this out for other MIS migrators in the future!
  • Academic Unit marksheets now include Bulk actions for adding students to interventions and custom groups, or sending communications. We've also renamed Multiple Column Edit Marks to Bulk Edit Multiple Columns.

13th January

Improvements to login management

We've updated your To Do list on My Homepage to only flag the most important potential login issues - duplicate emails for current or future staff. We've also improved the duplicates page by splitting out your report to show staff, guardian and student issues separately, so you can prioritise what to resolve first. Take a look at our updated guidance here: Duplicate email addresses

Once your users get logged in, you can use our new Login History page to view when they've logged in, plus whether they've logged in using Single sign-on (SSO) and Two-factor authentication.

If you use Google or Microsoft Single Sign-on (SSO), you can also enable our new Bypass two-factor authentication option to only require Arbor Two-factor authentication when using the Arbor Username and Password, but not when logging in with Single sign-on (SSO). 


  • Create new SMS and email templates to notify guardians about behaviour incidents or detentions. Add detail with our built-in merge fields, or set different messages for different severity levels.
  • Detention information on the parent portal now has room numbers.
  • We've added Year Group and Registration Form to your list of unassigned detentions.

Getting around Arbor

  • Now when going to Students > Demographics > Derived Indicators, you'll see a handy list rather than more pages to select. Click on an indicator type, then select your demographic in the filters. You can also filter by student group, or switch to view the inverse of the demographic.
  • Instead of different options for logging behaviour points for each scale in menus and Quick Actions, you can now log or report on points from one place - just use the filters to select your Point award scale. Top Tip: Any Live Feeds from these pages will need to be set up again.

What else is new?

  • We'll use your schools short name when sending emails from the MAT MIS. Your schools can set this from the School > School Details page. 
  • See Behaviour Incidents that take place on certain dates on the Behavioural Incidents Dashboard.
  • Jump to the main Behaviour Incident from the Student Involvement overview using the View Behavioural Incident button.
  • Changes to Timetable Cycles are now only possible between 2pm and 5pm each day.
  • Charts, such as the horizontal bar charts on MAT MIS, are now keyboard controllable.

December 2022

22nd December

New in your To Do List

We’ve added a new flag on To Do lists on My Homepage for potential login issues. This will highlight how many students, guardians or staff have email addresses on more than one profile which can stop them from being able to access Arbor. You'll then be taken to a page where you can easily change or delete the duplicate emails: Login issues in my To Do list on My Homepage

Random Student Picker

Engage your students and choose them fairly using our new Random Student Picker. Available in the Student View of My Classroom, the student picker spins to select a random student from your class - perfect for projecting on your board.

Assessment reporting

  • Filter by Demographic and Demographics vs Inverse on the Grade Distribution and Attainment Over Time assessment analysis pages.
  • Filter by year, year group, assessment or assessment period on the Raw Summative Marks page for easier export.
  • See strands on the Manage Assessments page on MAT MIS, enabling you to import marks.

What else is new?

  • When using the Global Search, we no longer store students, staff or guardians in different years, allowing you to easily access all profiles from the All Results page.
  • Sometimes awarding organisations don't add a date and time for an exam to their basedata. Now we show the start and end date of the series, or the date and time you've set on the Allocate Exam Rooms page rather than TBC.
  • Send emails to your MAT or school staff from the Group Staff > Absences > All Staff Absences page on the MAT MIS.
  • Parents can look at future Meal Menus in different terms using a drop-down on the Parent Portal or Arbor App. 
  • In our new tables, profile photos (when they're in the same column as names) no longer show when you select the XS or S column sizes, so you can fit as many rows on the page as possible.
  • Assignments can now be marked as Waiting for student to submit after they’ve been marked as submitted. We've also removed the bulk actions to change the submission status for assignments submitted via Arbor to Submitted or Late, as this has never been possible.
  • Printable registers for cover or lessons now have room numbers.
  • Use the new Detentions happening today field in the Custom Report Writer.
  • We've simplified the left-hand menu when you click into an Intervention group.
  • Processes that run in the background after you edit your attendance Roll Call times have been optimised. To enable this, we now lock down the ability to edit roll call times again for 30 minutes after a change is made.

9th December

Parent Portal and Arbor App

Parents can now see their child's calendar for today on the Arbor App! To make space for the calendar, we've removed the last/current and next lesson buttons on the App (but not from the Parent Portal).

You can also now report on meal choices made through the Parent Portal or Arbor App in advance: Reporting on future meal menu choices

Staff reporting on the MAT MIS

Our Group Staff > Absences > All Staff Absences and Statistics pages now allow you to report on staff absences for your schools, as well as your MAT staff. We’ve also added bonus features, such as the Bradford factor, and ability to filter by staff in the Workforce Census. 

Top Tip: Any Live Feeds from these pages will need to be set up again.

We've temporarily removed the Record New Absence button from the All Staff Absences page while we add the ability to record School staff absences. In the meantime, you can log absence from staff profiles. We're also going to group absences by staff member, and add pagination, bulk emailing and filtering by staff type!

What else is new?

  • Just like our previous updates for Predicted Marks, you can now see Current vs Previous Marks on marksheets.
  • Examination seating plans now have space for invigilators to sign at the bottom.
  • Pop ups and info cards at the top of student, staff and guardian profiles and in slide overs have now been refactored to be accessible with your keyboard, and show one row per item. 
  • Toggle whether student photos show on the My Classroom Student View.
  • In our new tables, click on the corner of cell and drag down to fill in, just like in Excel. 
  • We’ve added Young Carer Status, Early Years Pupil Premium, Hours at Setting, Top Up Funding and Disability Access Funding to our Entity Importer so you can import them in bulk via spreadsheet.

November 2022

25th November

Improvements on My Homepage

Compare your school's attendance performance live against Arbor schools across the country with Live National Benchmarking. No more waiting for data drops - compare your school's data live against Arbor schools across the country with both National Average and National Percentile figures.

Drill down to see how each demographic group at your school compares. We've also updated to the new tables on the drill down view, enabling you to quick search to filter for certain groups or students.


  • The Transition Matrix assessment analysis page includes all students in the calculations so you can see data for previous cohorts. Easily exclude your leavers by clicking into the filters and ticking the Don't include students who have left school already box.
  • Just like our previous updates for Baseline and Year Target, you can now see Current vs Predicted Mark on marksheets.
  • We’ve brought the Final Target, Predicted Mark and Predicted Final Mark assessment columns in the Custom Report Writer in line with other assessment columns by reducing what you have to fill out in the slide over.

What else is new?

  • We’ve optimised the loading speed on the Clubs page on the Parent Portal, and in the To box when sending Mail Merge communications.
  • We’ve added a new row on your Data Quality Dashboard Overview to quickly see the number of duplicate Email addresses.
  • You will now need to have the Finance: View permission (not just Meals: View) to be able to view meal reports related to financial information, such as the Meal Balances, Charges by Person and Charges by Date pages.
  • We’ve made the requirements for verification documents clearer when setting up card payments.
  • The Capita One Export has been updated based on requirements from Capita.

11th November


  • Just like our previous update to view Progress from Baseline to Current grade on marksheets, you can also do this for Current Grade vs Year Target.
  • The Attainment Over Time analysis page includes all students in the calculations so you can see data for previous cohorts. Easily exclude your leavers by clicking into the filters and ticking the Don't include students who have left school already box.
  • Have you rolled out assessments from the MAT MIS? To add marks there's no need to log into individual schools, as you can now download and import a spreadsheet right from Administration > Assessment > Annual Policy > Manage Assessments. Just select the assessment, then go to Import marks from the left-hand menu!

The Custom Report Writer

  • We’ve improved the Summative Baseline and Year Target assessment columns by removing unneeded fields in the slide over, pre-filling the academic year, and automatically selecting the display grade when an assessment is selected.
  • The Detention Type(s) column has been renamed to Detention Type(s) Issued, to reflect that this column is actually for reporting on when the detentions were issued. We'll soon be adding a new column for detentions happening on the date specified.
  • It was already possible to report on students' age in years. Now you can also use the Age (Months) column - perfect for identifying students who may need more support, such as by looking at current age vs reading age.

What else is new?

  • To prevent issues with data, we now only allow you to set up third-party API integrations when your school site is live. If your school is live and you're seeing the Application Not Live banner, please contact the Arbor Support Team if supported by Arbor, or your Support Partner if not supported by Arbor.
  • There are new Microsoft Power BI Datasets for Academic Units, Academic Unit Enrolments, Timetable Slots and Timetable Slot Staff.
  • We've increased the background priority for Emergency Alert emails so they'll be sent out as soon as possible.
  • We've improved attendance calculations to minimise missing marks when you run interventions. If an attendance record starts prior to a Timetable Period but ends during the period, we consider that attendance mark to calculate that Timetable Period's best mark.
  • We’ve added new bulk actions to the Update GCSE Attainment for Funding page so you can more easily update the individual Maths and English grades and information.

October 2022

28th October

Improvements to our new tables

We've now added our new table format to all remaining pages in the MIS including:

To enable these updates, we've changed how bulk actions work, replacing Bulk Mode. It's now even easier to change assessment and attendance marks - click here to see how: New tables across the MIS

What else is new?

  • Our loading icon is now the Arbor logo!
  • Report on Young Carers using our built-in demographic page, or a custom report.
  • There are new Microsoft Power BI Datasets for Student Academic Year Enrolments, User Defined Fields (UDFs) and student Preferred Names.
  • On the MAT MIS, we’ve changed the landing page for Analytics > Assessment > Analysis to the Cohort Level Analysis page.
  • For schools moving to Arbor from SIMS, we'll send you a reminder if your DMS folder wasn't imported.
  • The event widget (e.g. to show previous and next lessons on student profiles) has now been refactored to be keyboard controllable - press command and click to open the event in new tab.
  • Accessibility improvements for screen reader devices, including better labels and category descriptions, plus landmarks enable you to skip from section to section on a page.
  • We migrate UKDFE Teacher Properties from Progresso, and addresses are now migrated without 'Other' or 'None' from ScholarPack.
  • Once set up, use the Bulk action button in Data Collections to assign multiple staff to complete a collection item. 

14th October

Cunninghams Cashless Catering

With our new integration, you can manage cashless catering payments directly from your MIS! Parents and staff only need to log in to Arbor to get full visibility over students’ meal purchases and payments.

Easily keep track of School Events

Go to School > Timetable > School Events to use our new event management pages.

  • Use All School Events to see all your events, and use the bulk actions to change the staff or location.
  • Use Repeating School Events (List) to see events that happen more than once, and use the bulk actions to change the staff, the event type and whether cover is required.


  • Charts now compare your data to the previous academic year rather than 2 years prior.
  • We’ve removed the Region field from the Institutions page.
  • The Schedule button on the Custom Report Writer will now allow you to schedule reports.

What else is new?

  • The Students > Demographics > Students with SEN page now includes the end date, so you can report on expired statuses, or see EHCP end dates.
  • Generate a quick summary report of your Post-16 data to ensure you receive all your funding from the School Census: Autumn Census Post-16 Report
  • Automatically set Outcome Grades from Exam Results for the ILR.
  • When importing from Options, unique ID is now required, but name and ID matching is no longer case-sensitive.
  • We've improved the processing in the background when you create, end or delete timetable slots. 
  • When students are deleted in bulk (such as via the Data Retention page), these are now staggered in the background. You might find when deleting large amounts of data, the process will be locked for a few minutes while this is done.
  • We've added clearer information on the requirements when setting up card payments.

September 2022

30th September

Rotating Meal Menus & Parent Portal Meal Choices

Set up our new Meal Menus that rotate every one, two, three or four weeks - choose which meals to enable your menus for, when the menu is available and when the cut-off is for changes. Then guardians can choose exactly what their children should eat through the Parent Portal or Arbor App! Get started here: Rotating Meal Menus



Improvements to the new tables

  • Use the extra small XS setting to reduce the row height even further to fit more data on your page.
  • If you filter out a row, bulk actions won't be applied to those rows - we also show a pop-up to let you know. 
  • We've removed the search bar, hidden columns, the download button and the ability to reorder columns from tables in slide overs.

You can see full details of how our tables work here.

What else is new?

  • You can remove a date of birth from a guardian’s profile.
  • Report on Court Orders for students, guardians and staff.
  • There are new Microsoft Power BI Datasets for SEN Statuses and Student's registration forms.
  • The Students > Attendance > Absentees By Date page now includes U marks so you can follow up with these physically present but statistically absent marks.
  • When sending emails from people's profiles, we now automatically populate the Bcc field rather than the To field - more details here.
  • We’ve updated the SMS Billing page to accurately reflect processing times.
  • We've reverted the description for the X code back to Not Required (non Compulsory School Age), as it's no longer used for Covid-related absences.
  • You'll only see assignments from the current academic year on the Parent and Student Portals.

15th September

MAT MIS Cohort and Mark Level Analysis

See all your summative assessment data for your schools or individual students in one table, and export into your external analysis tools: Using the Cohort and Mark Level Analysis pages

Shorter course names

Save space on your timetables, calendars and tables across the MIS by reducing the length of course display names: Shorter course names on timetables, calendars and tables

Updates for the census

  • Add Alternative Provision placements at companies.
  • For the Spring 2023 census, you can note if a student is a Young Carer.
  • Also for the Spring 2023 census, you can record your School's Weekly Hours Open.

What else is new?

  • Graduate Teacher Programme is no longer a valid QTS route, so we've removed it from the available options when recording QTS.
  • Report on IDs from your previous system using the Legacy System ID field in Student, Guardian and Staff Custom Report Writer reports.
  • The DfE no longer requires schools to complete the weekly EdSet attendance form, but we won't be removing the Covid-19 Dashboard for now. If you want to continue to share your data, you can use do this via Wonde.
  • When reporting on boarders in the Custom Report Writer, the Room field is now optional.
  • For Shared Teaching students, we now show the school the mark was recorded at on emergency evacuation registers.
  • On the assessment import spreadsheet, the columns will reflect any aliases set up.
  • Improved the default mapping when importing your first TimeTabler file of the year.
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