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How to Count Children in Active Families

Another good question recently came into our ProCare Tech Support email: 

When I do a “Count” of Active families, the number seems to include siblings who have previously withdrawn. Is there a way to exclude withdrawn siblings so the Active count displays only the number of children who are currently enrolled? 

It turns out this is a fairly common question; one to which there are a couple of different solutions.

                    

Using the “Count” Feature

If you currently use ProCare Software you’re probably familiar with the Select Button (See Doug’s Article) which let’s you select certain groups of families to view. The Count feature is found within the Select button and is very useful for getting a quick count of the number of families and children that meet a particular criteria. As the email questioner points out however, the default is to include all children in the family. So while one child may still be attending the center, a brother or sister  (who attended in the past) might now be withdrawn. In this example both children would be included in a count of all Active families. 

Use a Report, rather than a Count

One simple solution is to use a standard report, like a Roll Call Sheet. Most reports automatically exclude children who have withdrawn, which is exactly what you’re looking for. With a report you have the added flexibility of being able to sort by classroom (for a class by class count) or choose to sort by “none” to get a list of all enrolled children. Reports like Roll Call sheets include the total number of children at the bottom. And of course, it’s not necessary to print the report if all you are interested in are the raw numbers. 

Count Feature and Withdrawn Classroom

If you prefer to use the Select button’s Count feature you can still do so, but you’ll want an easy way to exclude all withdrawn children. You may assign a classroom called “Withdrawn” to children who leave the center (or delete their classroom completely). Then click Select > Primary Classroom > Mark All. This will select all classes to include in the count. Just uncheck the class named “Withdrawn”, or if you’ve deleted their classroom there is nothing to uncheck. This works reasonably well, but can effect other reports where you might want the withdrawn child to show up in their most recently assigned class, like classroom meal counts. So my preference is to use a Roll Call  Sheet instead. 

Counting Toward the Future

One thing we are considering is a way to make it easier to exclude certain categories of families or children. For example, the ideal situation would be if you could say INCLUDE all “Active” families but EXCLUDE withdrawn siblings. This is something we’re taking a very close look at as we consider what a next generation ProCare product may be like. 

Happy counting and until next time, cheers! 

-Phil 

If you have questions or comments about this article (or suggestions for another article) I’d be pleased to hear from you. Drop me at note at phil@procaresoftware.com.

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