At different points in the year, you may need to update demographic data, financial aid, test scores, or other fields for a large group of students. Data Imports can be used to easily update information for existing contacts (e.g. students or parents) in your SchoolAdmin system. This article will go over how to create a bulk update import template to be used in your Update-type data imports.

If you want to create new contacts through an import, click here to learn how.


How-To: Create a Bulk Update Template

The first step in creating your bulk update template is to create a search through Search & Reports that isolates the records (contacts) you want to update. For this example, we will create a search to update the financial aid and scholarship fields for Enrollment in Progress students.  

Select your search criteria from the drop-down menus in the Search & Reports page, and then click the blue Search button to run it. Here is an example of a search for all students that are currently Enrollment in Progress status for the 2019-2020 term:

2 - Pull Desired Fields in as Displayed Columns

Once you have confirmed that you have the set of records (contacts) you want to update pulled into the search, click on the blue Change Display / Columns button in the upper right of the search page.

A pop-up window will display that will allow you to choose from the fields in your SchoolAdmin system. You will want to select all of the fields that you intend to update for the group of students. You can do this by checking the box next to the field name that you want to include. After selecting all of the desired fields, click the blue Apply button to confirm.

For our example, we will display fields within the 'Scholarship' and 'Tuition Assistance' groupings as shown in the screenshot below. Please note: If some of the data you want to update does not already have an associated field in SchoolAdmin, you can include those fields manually at a later time.

After hitting the Apply button, the search page will refresh and you will see your search results with any selected fields displayed as columns.

3 - Export the Search Data

Once you have all of the students and fields that you want to update pulled into your search, click the green Export button in the upper right of the search page and select the Export as Import Template option.

A pop-up will appear with a message saying the export is being processed.  Once the export is complete, you will see a link that you can click and download the file.

Once you download and open the exported template file, you will notice the CHILD.id as the leftmost column. This is the SchoolAdmin ID of the student and is what allows you to easily import the data back into the system.

4 - Enter the Update Data

Now that you have the base of your bulk update import template, you can begin entering the data you want to update for the students in the appropriate columns. There are a few things to keep in mind when filling in this data:

  • If the field already exists in SchoolAdmin and it only accepts specific values (such as a drop-down field on a form), please ensure all values listed in the file are valid and written exactly as they exist in SchoolAdmin. If invalid values are provided for a field, the import will fail until the value is corrected. Field values are case sensitive.

  • If the field does not yet exist in SchoolAdmin and only accepts specific values, please contact SchoolAdmin Support with the field name, field type (e.g. open text, single-select, etc.), and the field values if applicable. Indicate in your message to the team that this field does not exist in SchoolAdmin yet. If this field belongs on a form, please indicate which form you would like it on, and what you want the prompt on the form to read.

  • If there are any fields in the file that are simply for reference and do not contain any updated data, such as student name, indicate that these fields can be omitted from the update by replacing the word 'CHILD' with the word 'IGNORE' in the column headers followed by the period and the respective field name with underscores. If you only have a few records you need to change the name for, it is recommended to make these changes directly in SchoolAdmin on an individual basis.

Once you have your file saved, you are ready to import it into the SchoolAdmin system. Click here to learn how to use the Import Data Tool!


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