The turmoil around the start of a new year is usually starting to settle down by the second week of school as students and teachers settle into a routine.

But at some B.C. schools the opposite is happening as teachers and students grapple with the problematic new BC Education enrolment software that's messing up timetables and failing at some of the most basic classroom tasks.

David McCristall, a computer teacher at Terry Fox Secondary School in Port Coquitlam, told CBC, "As of (Wednesday) a significant percentage of our staff still didn't have access to their class lists. That's not really acceptable."

Still no class lists

"Imagine you have a class full of students," said McCristall in a phone interview, "but you can't even guess what their names are because you don't even have a list of the students that are supposed to be there."

"It seems to not work at all," he added.

The new software, known as MyEdBC, has also been criticized as too slow, impractical, and has crashed on numerous occasions.

It was purchased by the B.C.Education Ministry to replace the notoriously unreliable enrolment software called BCeSIS.

BCeSIS cost almost $100 million dollars over its five-year life span, the price tag for MyEdBC is $95 million.

"Awkward" design

Fred Rogger, a teacher at Correlieu Secondary in Quesnel, says even when the new MyEdBC program works, its design is even more awkward than BCeSIS. 

"I want to be able to see all my students at once on one page," said the 29-year Humanities instructor.  "I want to be able to print off their student number and names on one page where I can easily register their marks. Believe it or not, we can't even do that right now."

Scheduling gridlock

At Nelson's L.V. Rogers Secondary, an emergency meeting Monday night led to an immediate infusion of extra funding to help sort out scheduling gridlock caused by a large number of students who couldn't get the core courses needed to graduate or advance through their grade.

MyEdBC, which schedules students and courses, was flagged as the primary cause of the chaos. 

When asked about the problems, Craig Sorochan, Public Affairs Officer for the Ministry of Education sent this statement, "While MyEdBC performance was slow initially, it has been functional and speeds are improving."

McCristall wonders how some schools are going to work their way out of the quagmire.

"To fix (it) you need to get us the information we need, and the kids need to get the courses they need," he said. "But how that happens in the state we're currently in is a bit of a challenge because we can't just go back to the old system."

"It's only data," marvels McCristal. "Data is so easy and cheap to move around on the Internet these days, honestly I can't believe we're having the same problems we had when we started BCeSIS."