The Portal page is the key to navigation throughout Focus and throughout the ERP system. Before conducting purchase orders, taking inventory, etc., you must learn the basics of the software. A lot can be accomplished directly from the Portal page, which includes an Alerts module, Upcoming Events, a Find an Employee module, a Birthday List, and more.

All portal blocks can be added via SIS > Setup > Portal Editor.

The Basics of the Portal Page

When you first sign into Focus, you will be taken to the Portal page.


To navigate through the Enterprise Resource Planning system, be sure ERP is selected via the SIS/ERP toggle.


Depending on your role at the district and your profile permissions, you may have access to SIS as well. For more information on the SIS Portal page and basic navigation, see Portal.

Your username displays in the far right corner of the screen. If you have access to multiple profiles, your username may display as a pull-down.


Click the logo / Portal button at any time from any screen to navigate back to the main Portal page.


Most districts elect to have their own logo here, as opposed to the built in Focus logo.

Logos and other district information can be customized via SIS > Setup > District Info.

The Focus navigation menu displays along the left side of the screen. If you hover over any of the menu icons, the menu will open and the menu titles will appear.


Because you may have different preferences set up, your menu may be located along the top of the screen. To change your preferences, select SIS from the SIS/ERP toggle, from the Users menu, click My Preferences. From this screen, you will have the ability to customize the look of your Portal page and more. To change the menu, select or clear the selection for Use Sidebar Menu. Once finished, click Save. See the article on My Preferences for information on how to customize the look of the software.


From here, you can click on any of the menu items for additional options (screens).

To quickly find a screen within a menu, click the menu and type the full or partial name of the screen in the Search text box. The menu will filter based upon the entered criteria. Click the desired screen.


At the bottom of the menu is a magnifying glass (in the left corner of the screen). To search for any screens within ERP, click on the magnifying glass and start typing in the provided text box--this will pull any screens that match. Once you see what you are looking for, click the name and the screen will open.

Your Last login displays and includes the day and time of your last login to the system.


The Portal page may also come equipped with additional dashboards; dashboards can be set up (normally by the district) via SIS > Setup > Portal Editor, and are available for selection from the dashboard pull-down. These additional dashboards usually display important student/employee data resulting from advanced reports, etc.


The dashboard pull-down only displays dashboards assigned to your profile via Setup > Portal Editor. If you only have one dashboard assigned, you will not see a pull-down.

In addition to school/student data being displayed as part of additional dashboards, if you have more than one profile, you will see additional Portal pages. In the example shown, there is a System Administrator portal and an ERP Internal Account Bookkeeper portal.


A Focus greeting will welcome whomever is signed into the system. You will see your username here.


The Help button is linked to two types of external software (depending on the version of the software you are using): Moodle (Focus University) and ScreenSteps. Click the Help button to open a help documentation article pertaining to the screen you are using. The Help button is available on every Focus screen.


Here you have the option to open the article in a new window and browse other articles housed within ScreenSteps.

Click the Logout button to sign-out of your Focus session. Logging out will take you back to the main login screen. Note: Closing out of the window will not sign you out. Closing the browser all together may or may not sign you out depending on your browser settings.

If your district is using Active Directory for single sign-on, you will see a message informing you that you have been temporarily logged out of Focus.


Messenger is profile specific; therefore, if your profile does not have permission to use Messenger, the icon will not display.

1. One of the last tools on the Portal page is Messenger, which allows you to send messages to other users. Click Messenger at the bottom of the screen to begin utilizing the feature.

Students and parents can only send messages to their assigned teachers. Teachers can send messages to their students, students' parents, and school staff.

2. Recent chats will appear on the right side of the screen. Click the user's name to open the chat again.

3. There are two icons in the upper right corner of the messenger window. Click the first one to open Batch Messenger, described below. Click the second settings icon to open Preferences.

To send a batch message, select the Students, Parents, and/or Staff users to whom the message is being sent from the Send To: section and the corresponding pull-downs. Note: You can select multiple users from combined pull-downs. Next, type the message into the provided text box. You can also use the listed features: Bold, Italic, Underline, Strikethrough, Insert Special Character, and Smiley. When the message is complete, click Send. You can also click the X in the right upper corner of the screen to close Batch Messenger or click the Cancel button.

Utilize the Filter text box located at the top of the pull-down for a quick search. Begin typing the name of the desired user. You can also click the Check all visible and Clear selected links for quick selections.

To customize Messenger, click the Preferences icon and select the check boxes for listed features you'd like to include. When customization is complete, click Save. You can also click the X in the right upper corner of the screen to close Preferences or click the Cancel button.

4. To begin a new message, click the group, such as Students, Parents, or Staff listed at the bottom of the Messenger (Recent Chats) screen. Then, select the student, parent, or staff member from the listed users.

To quickly locate the user in question, start typing their name in the Filter text box.

5. Selecting a user will open a new messaging screen. Type your message in the provided text box and press Enter to send the message.

6. Upon sending a message, you have several additional options listed along the bottom of the window. These options include (listed from left to right): SpellCheck, Bold, Italic, Underline, Strikethrough, Insert Special Character, and Smiley.

7. Once the window is open, you can minimize it by clicking the arrow, or close the window, by clicking the X.

8. You also have the option to flag messages by clicking the red flag next to the date and time stamp at the top of the messaging window.

Upon selecting Flag Message, the message will be hidden from all users involved unless you click Unflag Message. Flagging a message is a great tool for message that should be reported and reviewed by administrative staff. Flagging a message allows administration to review problematic messages without having to search through all messages sent.

If you are logged in as a teacher, referrals can be created as needed via flagged messages from students. In this situation, click the red flag and select Flag Message or you can select Flag Message & Create Referral. For more information on creating referrals, see Add Referral.

Profanity and other inappropriate language is automatically flagged in Focus Messenger.

Set up the Focus Chat Alerts job via SIS > Setup > Scheduled Jobs in order for emails to be generated upon messages being sent.

Alerts, District & School Announcements, and Upcoming Events

The Alerts module contains profile-specific notifications, which are automated by Focus and used to manage daily tasks. Alerts link to the corresponding screens in Focus to complete the alerted task. This section lists any activity that requires approval or your attention, whether it be a purchase order, an asset transfer, etc. Click the link or the screen icon to navigate directly to the appropriate screen.


District Reports only display in the District Reports block; however, if the District Reports block is removed via SIS > Setup > Portal Editor, reports will display in the Alerts block.

Clicking New Purchase Orders will open a district report with the corresponding purchase order information, or clicking CF25760000 will open Warehouse > Catalog > View Item tab.


The District & School Announcements module contains profile-specific notifications or reminders from both Focus and the school/district. Messages will display on the Portal based on entered start and end dates; if no end date is specified, the message will remain on the Portal page. Typical messages include reminders for deadlines, meetings, etc.


Administrators have the ability to create their own school level profile-specific messages via SIS > Setup > Portal Messages. However, this option is dependent upon profile permissions.

District & School Announcements and Upcoming Events created via SIS > Setup > Portal Messages and SIS > Users > Calendar display depending on your permissions to selected schools via SIS > Users > User Info > Permissions tab.

The Upcoming Events module contains reminders of the  events on your Calendar. Upcoming Events display until the event occurs, and the date appears in the title. Hover over the event with the mouse to display a tooltip, which contains the event's description, if one was added upon creating the event via SIS > Users > Calendar.


Click View Calendar to open your calendar, which can also be accessed via SIS > Users > Calendar.

Find an Employee

The Find an Employee module allows you to quickly conduct an employee search directly from the Portal screen.


1. To conduct an employee search, enter the employee's name or a partial name; you can also enter employee's EIN to conduct a search.


The search bar is not case sensitive, and full or partial entries can be in either a first last or last, first format. The comma is necessary in the last, first format. A full employee name or ID number can also be entered into the search bar. Searching for "ab" will pull every employee whose first or last name begins with "ab" into the search results. To pull last names that start with "ab" add a comma: enter "ab," in the search box.

2. Select the Include Inactive Users check box to include inactive employees in your search.


3. The More Search Options link enables you to search for groups of employees with similar information in any number of user fields and/or user data. Click the More Search Options link to open Human Resources > Employee and set additional search parameters. From the Employee screen, click More Search Options.


4. When all parameters have been set, click the Search button. You can also click the Search button without entering any criteria to generate a search of all employees.


For more information on conducting an employee search and the steps after conducting your search, see Employee.

Favorites/Recent Programs, Birthday List, and Focus University Courses

The Favorites/Recent Programs section displays links to screens marked as Favorites as well as the most recently visited screens.


To navigate to a favorite program, click the program name in the Favorites list in the Favorites/Recent Programs section.


To add a program to the Favorites list, navigate to the screen in Focus. Click the star icon next to the name of program at the top-left of the screen and click + Add (name of program) to Favorites.


You can also navigate to Favorites by clicking the star icon at the top-left of the screen and click the program name in the list.


A program can be removed from the Favorites list in the Favorites/Recent Programs block by clicking the delete button (red minus sign) next to the program name.


Alternatively, click the star icon at the top-left of the screen and click the delete button (red minus sign) next to the program name.


Recent Programs contains profile-specific links to the most recent screens opened, which enables direct navigation from the Portal page. Click on any one of the program links to navigate to the corresponding screen.


The Birthday List section displays upcoming Student Birthdays as well as upcoming User Birthdays.


Click the student name links to open Students > Student Info. Click the user name links to open Users > User Info.

The Focus University Courses section contains several helpful links. Click any of the links for videos on select subjects beginning with Purchase Order / Request Process. Note: Some of the help courses/documentation here may be outdated; click the Help button mentioned in The Basics of the Portal Page for up-to-date documentation in ScreenSteps.

District Reports and School Folder

The District Reports module displays reports published with the Portal Alert enabled via SIS > Reports > District Reports.


District Reports only display in the District Reports block; however, if the District Reports block is removed via SIS > Setup > Portal Editor, reports will display in the Alerts block.

Click the District Reports link to run the report for the listed number of results.

District Reports

The School Folder module displays FTE Summary Reports that were pushed to the school folders. As shown in the School Folder example, there have been several summaries published and viewed.


Once you view the PDF, you have the option to Dismiss the summary by selecting the check box. However, you can always select the View Dismissed check box to see everything.

The report will only be dismissed from your School Folder and will remain on all other users' School Folders assigned the applicable profile.

The School Folder is linked to SIS > Florida Reports > FTE Summary Reports (Breakdown). Upon running any of the FTE Summary Reports, you have the option to Push PDF to School Folder(s) in order to make them viewable for other users.

Punch In/Out

1. If your district is utilizing the Time & Attendance screens, employees have the ability to clock in and out via the Punch In/Out section of the Portal page.

The Punch In/Out section must first be set up via Human Resources > Time & Attendance Setup and Time & Attendance Approval; both screens require profiles permission via Setup > Profiles > Time & Attendance Approval and Time & Attendance Setup in the Human Resources section.

2. The current time displays along with the date.

3. If your schedule has been flagged as a Variable Schedule, the green check marks displays.

4. The time you Clocked in at and the time you Clocked out at displays, when applicable.

5. If special requests have been set up by the district, you can select the event or activity for the Special Request pull-down in order to submit time worked outside your normal hours or duties. Examples of special requests are field trips, athletic events, covering another teacher's class, fundraisers, etc.

6. Select your Job title from the pull-down.

7. Select your Facility of work from the pull-down.

8. Once all selections have been made, click Punch In to log your start time at work.

Once you've clocked in, the amount of time you have left to work displays. In the example shown, the employee has 3 hours and 37 minutes left in the work day. The employee's work hours are also displayed: 7:30 AM to 3:30 PM.

9. At the end of the work day and when you are required to clock out for breaks, click Punch out. Note: Some districts build breaks directly into the work schedule; therefore, employees are not required to clock out for lunch.

10. Click Travel to submit travel time as opposed to punching in.

In the Travel pop-up window, select your Job. Select the facility from which you traveling from the From pull-down. Select the facility to which you traveled from the To pull-down. Enter any notes and additional information, such as the reason for your travel time and why it should be included in your daily work hours in the Notes/Reason text box.

Click Submit.

When you arrive at your destination, click Arrived.

11. If you have permission, click Edit Clock Ins to view and/or edit the hours you clocked in and out of the system.

Profile permission must be given via Setup > Profiles > Employee Self Service > View/Edit Timecards.

Clicking Edit Clock Ins opens Employee Self Service > View/Edit Timecards. From this screen, click View All Timecards to review all punch in and punch out times, as well as request changes.