back to article Hands up who can tell me which pupil details transfer system has glitched. Yes, Capita's

Schools using Capita's information management system have been warned that there is an "incident" with its Spring release – just months after it 'fessed up to an issue with the same data-transfer mechanism in a previous release. crying kids in school Capita strikes again: Bug in UK-wide school info management system risks …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So, it's just another normal day at Crapita

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      normal day

      Not necessarily - the article had no mention of extra out-of-contract costs, nor significant delays, nor bonuses for the fatcats, nor offhsoring, nor loss of jobs for the worker bees.......

  2. rmv

    Who to blame

    So, little Bobby Tables is moving up to big school is he?

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: Who to blame

      Not enough upvotes.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      To the downvoter

      Forgive them xkcd, for they know not what they do.

      https://www.xkcd.com/327/

      Fortunately, help is at hand:

      https://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php/Little_Bobby_Tables

  3. Korev Silver badge
    Childcatcher

    If this bug happens to be similar to the one in 2017 then won't potentially email a pupil's details to the wrong parents make the school liable to being clobbered by GDPR (for no fault of their own)?

    1. FrogsAndChips

      Why "for no fault of their own"? The school is the data controller, it's their responsibility to ensure they take all measures to protect this data. That includes not blindly relying on a third-party vendor well-known for its poor track record in terms of data privacy.

      Of course schools don't have the resources to properly assess the security of their systems, and Capita was probably imposed on them anyway, but that doesn't remove their obligations for data protection.

      1. James Anderson

        In which case they should refuse to use the Crapita system until it has passed an external audit.

        If enough schools did this it might embarrass the Ministry of Eduvasion into supervising thier contractors properly.

  4. Lee D

    SIMS is always a nightmare, for everything. It's only redeeming feature is that everyone in state education standardised on it, so it gets vendor support from a lot of other products/services.

    But, to be honest, as an IT guy in education, I have yet to see an MIS that isn't at least 20% shite. They all are. State, independent, offline, web, cloud, they all have shiny interfaces on some parts and absolute trash on another part.

    It's taken me 4 years to get a nice listing of staff CRBs out of our provider (who shall remain nameless). Literally to the point that I coded up an Excel with ODBC to pull in the data from the database, sanitise to something approaching order by automatic formulae, then print it so it comes out on a single sheet in a nice compact tabular format (as requested by ISI inspectors - the equivalent of Ofsted for private schools - when we had an inspection who said the default report was basically useless). They still can't manage it, despite being in control of all the reporting output via Crystal Reports and all kinds, and don't make headway because "Well, one of our guys used to work for ISI years ago and he says it's fine").

    Four years to get a report, and I'm still no closer, despite pulling in every ranking person in the school to chase it, multiple meetings with them, literally supplying them a format and showing the database fields I manipulated to make it work, etc.

    1. colinb

      this one annoying thing about modern systems will shock you

      back in the client/server day there was no major system I used that didn't let you design your own reports, mainly by using Crystal Reports rpt files.

      The Delphi ERP system i worked on used QuickReport and again users could design and upload their own.

      Its basic functionality and replacing it with a listview in a webpage you can group is no replacement.

  5. Alister

    The common transfer files (CTF) mechanism is used to send children's information between primary and secondary schools for moving pupils and other ad-hoc transfers.

    Capita went on to say that schools shouldn't use this to share pupil and contact details with other schools...

    Yeah, you know that system for transferring pupil details, well, please don't use it for transferring pupil details, it's not designed for it...

  6. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "We are investigating one customer incident relating to a minor coding issue"

    It's only a minor coding issue but enough to tell users they shouldn't use it. What would count as a major coding issue?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Schools told:

    Schools told not to use it ever.

    FTFY

  8. The Nazz

    If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

    Back in the day, i (as i'm sure most of us did) managed to move from primary to junior to secondary to tertiary education ok. And at each new place of education they not only expected me but seemed to know who i was.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Weirdos

      They were weirdos who wrote things on pieces of paper and other depraved habits.

      Absolutely no scope for pork barrel, they had to be disposed of, they were a complete obstacle to the development of a major maket for Crapita.

  9. The Nazz

    Spotted the problem.

    Easy. How on earth can you transfer pupil details when there are none? Aren't they all students these days?

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