Fresh setup - Need help


Our language and cultural school is a non-profit and all teachers and myself are volunteer. I help to look into improve our management with an online software. Gibbon standouts and after my convincing repeatedly, they (old school excel wizards) have decide to go with Gibbon. I would like to see if you can help us the following issues to deploy the system. :

A. Migrating data:

I have installed system on local machine and it works great. However, when I look at your data structure and school data they are quite different. So if possible I will need your help in clarify a couple of thing below:

  1. Your database is more extensive and some fields we don’t required to have in the database. Should we just leave it empty or is there a way to remove/hide those fields?

  2. Our user data is in only one single file. There is only one type of student user and parents, teachers are shown as data field. With your system, we can create parent user so my plan is to separate parent into separate user data file but I don’t know how to link them with student users. (The same go with teacher data.)

  3. Our system is manual and we don’t have username or password. I don’t know how to make system assign them automatically if these fields are empty when importing.

The structure of our school data xls file attached.

B. Application form
We want to have online enrollment and glad to know Gibbon have that capability but not sure how to customize the form. I know that we can add custom field. So for example, we can add the note section for food allergy and so on. However, we only need the information included in the spreadsheet attached and don’t know how to hide other fields that not needed in the form(for example, the background section). Can the form only be available during registration period like certain weeks/months?

C. Online payment
Lastly, we know Gibbon support online payment via PayPal. Can we use it for tuition payment? Also if there are any other support payment gateway like stripe or Do you support subscription type of payment (yearly)? Can we make after new user fill the application form, they will have to make the tuition payment immediately and mark paid in user database? If they are already in the system, how to make them enroll into new year and let them make payment.

Thank you so much for creating a wonderful software and make it available. Much appreciated in advance for your help!


Hi Don,

Thanks for choosing Gibbon, and welcome to the community. We appreciate your kind words! I’ll answer your questions as best I can below:

  • A1 - there is no need to remove these fields from the database, they can simply be ignored. This will not have a noticeable effect on performance.
  • A2 - take a look under Admin > User Admin in the main menu, and you will see some import options in the module menu (right hand side). Here you can import one file for your users, and then other files to create families, and link students and parents into those families. This guide ought to help you get started.
  • A3 - the import function does this automatically, either giving the same default password to each user, or a different random one. It's up to you when you run the import, you'll see the relevant field.
  • B - At the moment it is not so easy to hide the irrelevant fields, but the best bet is most likely to do so with CSS, perhaps in your own custom theme. We are considering longer term solutions here, but it will be a way off.
  • C - Yes, you can use Other > Finance to issue bills, and if you set up the Payment Gateway (Admin > System Admin > Third Party Settings) and Finance settings (Admin > School Admin > Manage Finance Settings) you can enable payment through Paypal. Again, longer term we'd like to offer other options, but we've not got the manpower to do that just yet.

I hope this helps boost your Gibbon learning. Feel free to follow up with further questions in this thread, or by starting another thread if they are on a different topic.



Dear Ross,

Much appreciate for your comprehensive answer! I have much to learn from you and others.

Kind regards,

Hi Don,

It’s a pleasure to be able to help. If only we were all so open to learning from each other as you are!