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Context: I'm starting a micro-school for 30-50 students. We want to manage absences and sick notes electronically. Parents should be able to schedule future absences and excuse past absences for their children. Ideally they should also be able to see which classes and workshops their children have attended and which ones are still outstanding.

How can I synchronize one central Google Calendar (that only the administrators have access to) with 30-50 other Google Calendars, so that parents see only the absences & schedules for their own children?

  • We can put in the time to develop a solution of our own if necessary. The point of this question is to see if anyone's already come up with a simpler way to do this, just so we don't reinvent the wheel unnecessarily. – Eckhard Fuhrmann Jul 18 '16 at 22:39
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You can create a Google Calendar for each student, and then under Calendar Settings, choose Share This Calendar so that both school administrators and parents have read/write access to the calendar. You can add all of those students' calendars to the administrator's view, and even color by some grouping (class etc.) if you're not already using the color for some other categorization.

Probably you want to have two calendars for each student: one for absences and one for classes/workshops, so that the administrator can have a view of only the absence calendars that isn't cluttered by seeing lots of events for the students during class times. You could also use this distinction for different parental permissions (e.g. just read rather than write the student's class calendar). The set of calendars for classes etc. may take more work than the one for absences to integrate with any other system you're using to register the students for those classes.

  • I can see a couple of problems with this. First, it assumes that all the parents have Google accounts or are willing to create some (and remember to use them). It also assumes some facility with using Google Calendar. There's also the very good chance that Google simply won't let you create 100 calendars. – ale Jul 20 '16 at 13:12
  • If OP wants to use Google Calendars to manage student absences, OP must be assuming the parents will have or be willing to create Google accounts and can & will use those calendars - social elements like parents remembering/knowing how to use any given system seem a bit out of scope for this question, and are NOT limited to this answer. Also, there may be a maximum number of calendars created in one day (which may be 25); admins can create calendars over a few day span. – WBT Jul 20 '16 at 19:11

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