Special needs kids project - seeking mentoring

Hello community.

I am building a project for work - a school for special needs children.

What I am hoping to build:
A basic site with two pages, where:

  • parents can sign-up per day which from-and-to hours they need us to care for their child
  • we (staff) can see a day by day visual of children in the institution and the need (calculated) for staff

I have made a simple mockup: link

What I am hoping you will help with (I will do all the work, I just need sparring from someone much better than me):

  • Video call or mail along the whole process from talks about planning models, apps and so on
  • Specific code issues
  • Other advice on the way

I hope some of you would like to help me and the kids along :blush:.

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Hi qvisty,

Definitely feel free to ask those questions here on the forum. They will likely spawn some good discussion. If that’s not what you’re looking for, I can help a bit. DM me and we’ll exchange info.

Great. Thank you. I will do both :slightly_smiling_face:

I cant figure out how to dm on my phone. I wrote a mail via your website

I will try to explain the project I am hoping to build in more detail now.

First off I think it would have been a good process to debate with some of you more experienced people to discuss the structure needs of the project like which apps we need, models and the models’ field, but I will explain which choices we have made and maybe you can comment here, if you like.

The school is, as mentioned for a school for special needs children.
When the school is closed we still have to take care of some of the children and the project is a dashboard to visualize the care needs, starting with the parents telling the school that they have a care need for their child on a form page.

The care need is made by me in the app now (but User (parent) log in and posting is planned later)

The website itself for now is planned to be two pages.

  • One for creating careneeds via a form and
  • One for showing an overview of careneeds pr. one date (with a filter or change date option)

The overview page must help me say something like (visually, graph or with text):

  • at 08:00 child “name” arrives (1 child in care)
  • at 09:00 child “name” arrives (2 children in care)
  • at 15:15 child “name” leaves (1 child left)
  • at 15:45 child “name” leaves (0 child left)

afterwards it would be nice if the site can help me suggest a roster for when a specific number of staff should start and end their day. Like the example above it would be nice if the first staff meets at 07:45 to be ready for the first child, and the last staff leaves at 16:00

I hope the above makes sense. :slight_smile:

The project we have made so far looks like:
project - sfo: Main app for settings and all that. SFO is the danish word for our institution

app - children: app for everything about the children

class Child(models.Model):
    first_name = models.CharField(max_length=100)
    last_name = models.CharField(max_length=100)
    care_index = models.DecimalField(max_digits=2,decimal_places=1)

class CareNeed(models.Model):
    child = models.ForeignKey(Child,on_delete=models.CASCADE)
    begin_datetime = models.DateTimeField()
    end_datetime = models.DateTimeField()

app - employees: app for the staff info

class Employee(models.Model):
    name = models.CharField(max_length=100)
    title = models.Field.choices = ["pædagog","pædagogmedhjælper"]
    employment_rate = models.DecimalField(max_digits=2,decimal_places=1)
    created_date = models.DateTimeField('created')

class Shifts(models.Model):
    employee = models.ForeignKey(Employee,on_delete=models.CASCADE)
    begin_datetime = models.DateTimeField()
    end_datetime = models.DateTimeField()

app - shifts: app for assigning working ours to staff
no model yet.

I hope it all makes sense to you all, and I hope you would like to help along the way. If we run in to difficulty I will post in this thread, but again, if you would like to mentor the process I would love to video-chat about specifics.

Couple different thoughts from my perspective -

  • I’m a member of the “One app unless it’s necessary to do otherwise” camp. At this size of what you’re describing so far, I wouldn’t be creating separate apps. (The exception would be if you’re planning to extract one of these as a separate package to use in a different project, which immediately changes the evaluation. Regardless of the previous, I can’t see where I would ever make “shifts” a separate app - it’s not independent of and cannot work without the Employee and Shifts models. It’s just a set of views for working with those models.)

  • I’m curious about the care_index field. Is that important for us to understand now, or can that be deferred? (I’ve made a guess as to what I think that might be, and if I’m right, that doesn’t become important until working on the actual scheduling requirements.)

  • If the parents are going to be registering their own children on the site, have you determined what your security architecture is going to look like? If parents are going to be able to edit their own children, you’ll need to implement some degree of row-level security to prevent parents from editing other people’s children.

  • Based on past experiences and depending upon local laws and regulations, automated scheduling can be extremely difficult. For example, some organizations mandate breaks within certain time windows of the shift. (e.g. First 15-minute break must occur between 2 and 3 hours of start-of-day, 30-minute lunch between 3:30 and 5:30 from SoD, second break between 6 and 7 from SoD.)
    Ensuring we had enough staff to cover all requirements while providing the required breaks tended to be more “art” than “science” at the time. (We never did get that module to do more than offer suggestions…)

I can’t do private consultations, but I’m willing to chip in here as appropriate.

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Thank you still. I will try to do a complete restart using your thoughts and tips.