Skip to main content
Skip table of contents

Special Programs

PowerSchool Special Programs version is available as of 7/4/2020.

View a walk-through of the Special Programs 20.6 Features on PowerSchool Community.

CategoryRelease NoteLearn More

This version includes accessibility improvements for the "date picker" and other areas.


PDF printing is now enabled for all types of documents. The document template options to turn on/off PDF printing have been removed as obsolete.

DocuSign Integration

DocuSign integration improvements:

  • The e-Signature document will route first to all staff signers at once, and then after all staff signers sign, it will route next to any/all non-staff signers (e.g., parents). Previously the e-Signature document would route to one signer at a time. If the "Sign Now" feature has been enabled on the DocuSign Account setup screen, then when sending the document to DocuSign, there is an option to immediately route the document to all signers at once, which makes the "Sign Now" feature non-blocking on any signer (either staff or non-staff).
  • Note that after DocuSign has sent the document to any signers, the "Sign Now" feature is constrained to the routing order used to send the document (and would otherwise then require all staff signers to sign before non-staff signers such as parents).
  • There is now a "Send Email Reminder" link next to each signer who has not signed in case a signer needs to receive the e-Signature invitational email an additional time.
Configuring DocuSign Integration
eSchoolPlus Integration

eSchoolPlus integration:

  • Added the ability to write multiple classification values back to eSchoolPlus.
  • eSchoolPlus Special Education Exit Reason: Corrected an issue where the student's special education exit reason was not uploading to the eSchoolPlus Personal page under Special Education Summary.

Immersive Reader for Customers Hosting On-Premises (USA only)

US-based on-premises customers now have an installer available to enable Immersive Reader functionality. This is a one-time installer that only needs to be run a single time. The installer's download site includes a prominent "Read Me" note providing instructions for how to do this.

On-Premises Customers

On-premises customers:

  • Versions 18.x (and earlier) will reach their end of life and end of support by September 1st, 2020. Customers on any of these versions should plan their upgrade now.
  • Support for SQL Server 2014 will end with the November 20.11 release. Any customers still using SQL Server 2014 should begin planning their upgrade.
  • Version 20.6 continues to support SQL Server 2014 and 2016, however, Version 20.11 will formally support SQL Server 2016 and SQL Server 2019.

Parent Portal

Parent Portal updates:

  • Corrected issue where the "Forgot Password" link did not work correctly in the parent portal. Note that this issue did not affect the use of the SSO-based SIS parent portal integration.
  • Corrected issue where progress monitoring chart/data in documents would be omitted in the parent portal when the relevant document section is made available there.


To improve security, uploading files with the following unsafe file extensions is no longer supported: .bat, .cmd, .commands, .dll, .exe, .jar, .js, .py, .vb, .sfx.

Self-Service Document Template Configuration

This functionality is for the System Administrator.

Override Document Template Behavior

The "Override Document Template Behavior" option now has additional functionality:

  • Tooltip help for each option (Note: Some options may require a subsequent model release to show the tooltips)
  • For document templates that support revision documents only, there are two new behavior options:
    • Revise Only Latest Finalized Document
    • Allow Revising Current And Past School Year Documents Only

Field Properties Tab

A new "Field Properties" tab has been introduced in the document template configuration area that allows the system administrator to override certain field properties as follows:

  • Required: Turn on this property to require the field to be filled in before the section can be completed.
  • Auto-Notify to Review Acknowledge Document: Applies to staff fields only: Turn on this property to enable referenced staff to automatically receive a message notification (with link to document) to acknowledge the document when the document is finalized. Once this property has been applied to one or more staff fields, you can select "Generate Acknowledgments List Report" from the top-most "More" drop-down menu to create a list report of documents with columns identifying which expected users have acknowledged documents and which acknowledgments are outstanding. You can then modify the list report further by establishing selection criteria, adding additional columns, etc.
  • Auto-Notify When Document Set to Review: Applies to staff fields only. Turn on this property to enable referenced staff to automatically receive a message (with link to document) notifying them that a document has been set to review.
  • Auto-Notify When Document Set to Final: Similar to the preceding property, but the message will be received when the document is set to final.
  • Audit Value Changes: Defaults to on for all document fields but can be turned off to fine-tune the verbosity of data changes captured in the audit log as users edit documents.
  • Fine-tuning data changes captured in the audit log: The system administrator now has options to fine-tune the data changes captured in the audit log as users edit documents.
    • First, there is the new "Audit Value Changes" document field-level property that the system administrator can override that determines if data changes for that field are captured. By default, this field property is on; however, if data changes for certain fields are not important and are making the audit log excessively verbose, the system administrator can turn the property off for those fields.
    • Additionally, for time, the system administrator has the ability to capture data changes in repeating row data. There is a new section level security option labeled "Audit Repeating Row Data" that allows the system administrator to enable this at the section level. To set this option, go to document template section security for a document section that has repeating rows, and click the "Other Security Options" tab. The option appears only if the section has repeating rows.
Overriding Document Template and Section Behaviors
System Administration

System Administrator updates:

  • The time zone setting can now be adjusted by a half-hour at a time to address time zones 30 minutes apart (e.g., Newfoundland).
  • Security rights can now be assigned directly to document template categories such that each document template in the category inherits rights from the category, which can make assignment and maintenance of rights much more efficient. For example, if a category has 10 document templates and the security access is the same for every document template in the category, the effort to assign and maintain the rights will be one-tenth of what it was previously.
    For more information, refer to in the System Administrator Help.
  • The audit log now allows multiple years of audit log entries to be archived in audit log partitions, which are always available and searchable without bogging down the production systems. A new partition will automatically be created each year after the end-of-year rollover.

    • For PowerSchool hosted customers, the partitioning system will retain a minimum of four years of audit log history.

    • On-premises hosted customers can override default retention settings and can manually create partition(s) immediately after upgrade using the Server Management Tool.

Configuring Document Template Security

Audit Logs

Unified Look and Feel

Minor changes have been made to the top navigation bar to achieve a unified look and feel with other PowerSchool products.

Workflow Case Management

Special Programs Workflow Case Management introduces several new features. A video walkthrough and other online help resources will be available upon release.

Staff Benefits

  • Quickly create a new workflow case for a student using the Create Workflow Case wizard to add documents associated with specific workflow processes.
    • You can add documents that already exist for the student, as well as create new documents from document templates, either immediately or whenever the document is needed in the process.
  • See at-a-glance where a student is in the special education process via a visual workflow case status indicator that appears next to a student's name throughout Special Programs.
    • The workflow case status automatically updates when events along the timeline are triggered throughout the process based on district-defined step metrics.
  • Easily assess where and why a workflow case is blocked or at risk of not meeting a target date.
    • For example, if a consent form was not received within the specified date range for that step to be completed, the workflow step status icon will indicate that the step is overdue.
  • Add or remove documents in a workflow case throughout the process.
  • Send notifications/messages to users based on document events.

Administrative Benefits

  • Set up workflow case types pre-configured with the right set of documents and step metrics for the workflow cases your district uses.
  • Configure up to 16 workflow steps for each workflow case type with detailed step completion criteria.
  • Specify precondition criteria that must be met in order for a workflow case to be created, for example, that a student must be 14 years old as of a specific date.
  • Specify criteria to automatically terminate workflow cases based on certain triggers, for example, if a parent/guardian refuses consent.
  • Allow staff to manually move a workflow case to a different step, for example, if a student transfers from another district and already has an IEP in progress.
  • Link workflow case types to automatically create a new workflow case for a student upon completion of a workflow case.
  • Bulk create cases for a group of students and have the system automatically evaluate where each student is in the process.

Workflow Case Management

Workflow Case Management

JavaScript errors detected

Please note, these errors can depend on your browser setup.

If this problem persists, please contact our support.