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Enable Change History


Change History provides administrators with the ability to enable, monitor, and track certain PowerSchool SIS data that has been added, changed, or deleted. Each historical record includes the name of the user that made the change (or System if made by PowerSchool), the date and time the change was made, and exactly what was changed. Historical records can be viewed individually or en masse.

Data Retention

When you enable Change History on your system, any recorded change is retained for 365 days from the date on which the change was recorded. As part of the End-of-Year Process, Change History records older than 365 days will be purged from your PowerSchool database. This retention policy is subject to change and will be reviewed annually. Districts have the opportunity to retain Change History records for up to 10 years. This setting is configured within the PowerSchool SIS installer on your server. To view your current Retain Change History setting, navigate to the Enable Change History page. Please note that Change History records will require additional storage. Hosted customers that would like more than one year of data retention should contact their Account Executive for a quote to upgrade to 10 years of data retention.

Data Management Recommendations

  • Change History should be disabled during new implementations and data migrations. 
  • A yearly backup should be taken before running the End-of-Year Process.
  • Utilize the Download function to perform data analysis outside of the PowerSchool SIS.

Before Getting Started

Before getting started, note the following:

  • It is recommended to secure the Change History Settings page using user access and page permissions.
  • When additional categories are added, the categories will inherit the default user access settings.

  • Information appears based on your user access, field-level access, and whether the page is accessed at the district level or school level. 

  • Fields included in the Contacts category do not belong to a single database table. As a result, contacts change history records may not appear in order or be grouped as expected.

  • When viewing a staff record that has been deleted, the Staff column is blank. When viewing a student record that has been deleted, the Student and School columns are blank. The changes are still tracked and, if needed, the data can be determined by examining the data in the database tables.
  • The PDF format is restricted to a maximum of 1000 records.
  • Using the CSV format to download data that contains right-to-left Unicode characters may result in the incorrect ordering of data. In which case, you can reconfigure your system, use a client, such as Google Sheets, or download the data in XLSX format.
  • When using the CSV format to download data that contain multi-line text, newline characters are automatically replaced with "\n" or "<br/>" depending on if the field is plain text or HTML.
  • If you have localized your version of PowerSchool, you must have the required character set installed to export in your specified language.

Enable Change History

Enable Change History for each category of data you want to monitor.

  1. Navigate to the Enable Change History page. 
  2. Switch Enable Change History to On.
  3. Select Enable Change History next to each category of data you want to monitor.
  4. Click Submit.

Edit Change History User Access Role

After enabling Change History, define which categories a user can access.

  1. Navigate to the User Roles page.
  2. Click User Access
  3. Click the name of the role you want to edit. 
  4. Click Change History
  5. To permit users assigned to this role to view change history for any category set to Use Default, select Default Change History Access
  6. To narrow the list of categories, use the filter.
  7. To override the default for categories, select Use Default in the header row to select all categories or select Use Default for a category.

  8. To permit viewing of categories, select View History in the header row to select all categories or select View History for a category.

  9. To deny viewing of the specific category, clear both the Use Default checkbox and the View History checkbox for the category. 

  10. Click Save.

Purge Change History

Using the Purge Change History special operation, you can change history records greater than the Retain Change History setting. For example, if the Retain Change History setting is set to 1 year, only those records that are greater than one year will be purged.

This function should only be run outside of business hours.

  1. Navigate to the Special Data Operations.
  2. Choose Purge Change History.

  3. Click Submit.
  4. Choose the category of data you want to remove. Select a date to remove all data in the category prior to that date.
  5. Click Purge Change History
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