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Capita Education Software Solutions is a trading name of Capita Business Services Ltd. Our Registered office is 30 Berners Street, London, W1T 3LR and our registered number is 02299747. Further information about Capita plc can be found in our legal statement.

Breaking changes policy guide


  1. Our policy is to provide a 6-month notice for breaking changes whenever possible.
  2. However, it may not always be possible to provide the full 6-month notice.
  3. We recommend that technical integrators (TIs) allow some flexibility in their schedules to account for potential changes with shorter notice periods.


We have a specific approach for handling "breaking changes". A breaking change refers to a change in requirements that may impact functionality.  Our policy is to provide TIs with a 6-month notice for breaking changes whenever possible. This gives Tis time to prepare and make necessary adjustments to their integrations.

However, there may be situations where providing a 6-month notice is not feasible due to unforeseen circumstances or urgent requirements. To accommodate such instances, we strongly recommend that TIs incorporate some flexibility into their schedules so that they can be better prepared to address any last-minute modifications and ensure that their integrations remain functional and compatible with the updated requirements.

There have been a few times when the industry was caught short. When Wales suddenly announced UIFSM last year, we proactively contacted partners to notify them, sent Beta releases to contracted partners to assist them with their development, and kept partners informed on our website and through our newsletter.

The sudden introduction of COVID attendance codes (sub-codes) a few years back posed a challenge, as well.  We managed to avoid a technical breaking change but some partners still had to code to support the sub-codes in to offer a full system.

A few years ago, there was a sudden change in the way free school meals were recorded, shifting from a simple yes/no format to a dated record set. To prevent the need for immediate changes in most TI applications, we implemented a solution that maintained read-only access to the fields through the old APIs and reporting engine. This allowed for seamless continuation of functionality without requiring extensive modifications in the short term.

In summary, we follow a policy of providing 6-months’ notice for breaking changes. Where this is not possible, we will work as proactively as possible with TIs to address the change.  We advise TIs to include some flexibility in their schedules to accommodate any unexpected changes. This proactive approach will help ensure that integrations remain robust and compatible, even in the face of evolving requirements.