Flex - Responsive Community Portal Theme


Flex is a new theme created by Synergetic, to create a responsive and more usable experience for users on mobile and smaller devices. It provides advanced layout techniques to repaint the current look and feel of the whole website.


Installation is very simple and can be completed with a few simple steps.  See Flex - Download and Installation

It is recommended you test the installation on a test server first, so that you can confirm the configuration is correct and become accustomed to the look and feel as well as test against a variety of devices to be sure you understand its Limitations

Important: Minimum Synergetic versions of 68.35 or 69.07 are required, to support the inclusion of Flex files for use in Community Portal.


The latest release is included in Flex - Download and Installation

To locate the version you are currently using, open the flex.css file, the version information should be at the top of the file.

Release and support

Synergetic have provided Flex as a custom site content option for clients - it is not included as part of the standard product suite and is not covered by Synergetic support.

Updates to the Flex installation files may be sporadic and based on improvements or changes Synergetic decides to incorporate from time to time.

If changes are made by Synergetic to the download set, they will be updated on the page Flex - Download and Installation with Versioning reflecting this. 

It is recommended to watch Flex - Download and Installation as the Wiki will notify you of any updates so you can consider and incorporate in your Synergetic environment.


Feel free to raise feedback or comments via our Discourse site - we want Flex to be a powerful and positive benefit for your implementation of our Community Portal and we may seek to incorporate some additional changes on occasion to maintain its value for our clients.


Note: It is recommended that changes be made by someone at your site familiar with editing CSS content.

The Flex content makes use of a set of variables to determine the colour of the various aspects of the page.

If you wish to make further changes to either the colours, or to add additional CSS changes, you may do so to the file 'flex-custom.css' contained in the ..\Flex folder.  This file when downloaded contains a copy of the variables used for setting the colours in Flex.  By changing the colour values you can change the look and feel.

You will need to include the 'flex-custom.css' file in the Community Portal configuration (as a second entry after the flex.js entry).

While you can modify any of the files we have provided with Flex, it is recommended to not change the main files if possible - if there are any updates to the main files from Synergetic, you would be required to do a file compare against your versions to determine what changes were made and merge these with your own edits.

It is also recommended to confirm whether you have a custom CSS file in ..\Site\CSS as this could generate a clash in display behaviours.  


Flex has been built as an overlay to the existing Community Portal pages, to allow a rapid delivery of a responsive style to clients without requiring significant changes to the Community Portal itself.  

Flex does therefore have some known limitations, either due to the nature of content as generated by the current Community Portal and/or due to technical capability of some browsers.

The following are the known limitations:

  • Flex is not supported for Internet Explorer and Edge browsers (due to use of certain CSS features that Microsoft browsers have not yet adopted).  It is recommended users use Chrome, Firefox or Safari (Mac/iOS).  
    • When a Community Portal instance using Flex is loaded in Explorer or Edge, the Flex logic will detect this and will disable itself to allow Community Portal to render as per usual.
  • Admin mode > Configurations link (for Administrator logins)
    • Recommended to use tablet or desktop browser
    • If using a mobile phone, use landscape mode
  • My Details page
    • Custom HTML, both top and bottom appear at bottom of page
      • Keys
        • CommunityPortal|CustomHTML|MyDetails|Top
        • CommunityPortal|CustomHTML|MyDetails|Bottom
  • Custom page(s)
    • Any custom pages will not inherit the Flex look and feel
    • If you have any custom pages these will need to be updated manually
  • Grid/Table implementation
    • The following grids/tables may not be responsive and may require the user to scroll the screen to see all detail
      • In most cases it is due to the size of the screen, e.g. when using a mobile phone
ResultsFlexible, scrolling required due to size of data
TimetableFlexible, scrolling required due to size of data


Flexible, scrolling required due to size of data

Flexible, scrolling required due to size of data

Recommend landscape mode if using a phone

Attendances Ext

Some tables are not flexible and data could be cut off
FinanceFlexible, scrolling required due to size of data

Payment Plans - Partially

Flexible, scrolling required due to size of data

Some information, e.g. Voluntary Contributions could be missed due to having to scroll

Manage Stored CardsFlexible, scrolling required due to size of data
Make An Account PaymentFlexible, scrolling only required when selecting to pay by a stored card

Flexible, scrolling required due to size of data

InterviewsFlexible, scrolling required due to size of data
DocsFlexible, scrolling required due to size of data
Parent ContactsFlexible, scrolling required due to size of data
ApplicationsFlexible, scrolling required due to size of data
Action Centre

Flexible, scrolling required due to size of data

Recommend landscape mode if using a phone


  • Upgrade to a minimum version of 68.35 or 69.07
  • Remove or test any additional site CSS changes you have made (..\Site\CSS)
  • Use Chrome, Firefox or Safari (Mac/iOS) web browsers
  • Student Results page
    • If displaying Markbook, check configuration key (CommunityPortal | Students | Results | Markbook | DisplayMode)
      • Best look is DisplayMode: 2
      • It is NOT recommended to have the following keys as TRUE due to display on phone/tables
        • CommunityPortal | Students | Results | Markbook | ShowMarkOutOfFlag
        • CommunityPortal | Students | Results | Markbook | ShowResultTypeFlag
        • CommunityPortal | Students | Results | Markbook | ShowWeightingFlag
  • Events page
    • If pagination active, when attempting to select a button (right side of grid) in most cases the screen will select the next page

      • Recommendation to increase size of paging (CommunityPortal|Events|Paging|Size)


My pages are showing as blank

Users are not seeing the reported fixes?

  • JavaScript changes
  • Refresh Browser

In some cases, where resolution requires a JavaScript code fix users may be required to refresh their browser cache.

We will recognise this and notify where a JavaScript change has been made in Flex - Download and Installation

Synergetic has actively used JavaScript in its products for many years. The refresh is not usually required for standard product changes as it is handled by versioning for each suite release, which browsers can detect and reload automatically. If you receive a new version of the Synergetic Community Portal the detection of a new JavaScript version would be identified without users needing to do anything.

As Flex is custom code outside of the normal supported suite and does not inherit the standard versioning mechanism, users are required to refresh their cache when Flex content is changed without a new version of the Community Portal also being deployed to your site.

A useful article on how to refresh the cache in multiple environments: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Bypass_your_cache

(source: Wikipedia) Bypassing your cache means forcing your web browser to re-download a web page from scratch, which can often solve website display glitches. It is also required after installing user scripts. Bypassing your cache is simple, safe, and causes no permanent changes.

How is this supported?

At present, this is treated as custom functionality and will fall outside of standard product support.

Feedback or suggestions can be shared in Discourse - Synergetic may review and consider feedback for potential inclusion in future revisions of this custom content.

See /wiki/spaces/DET/pages/2299031044 for updates

Why is there an initial display of the original Portal then the new Flex skin applied?

This is due to the Flex CSS being a skin on top of the original Community Portal.  It was implemented this way to provide clients with a responsive Portal in rapid time, without requiring a high degree of change to the original code. In essence the 'regular' Community Portal page loads, then the Flex style overrides this display a moment later.

Update 05/09/2018 - v1.1 now supports a blank 'loading' page appearing instead of showing the original Portal display. These files are backwards compatible (v68.35+/v69.07+) but the initial display of the original Portal skin will continue to show until the Community Portal is upgraded to v68.37+/v68.09+

Will my Community Portal page configuration and security settings be affected?No - As the regular Community Portal logic loads the page first before the Flex style overlays, your user/role based security and page configuration settings will be respected.

Why is this placed in the ..\Site\Flex folder and not in ..\Site\CSS folder to avoid the initial load of the non-flexible?

Due to some browsers code base not supporting this (for example Internet Explorer/Edge) detection of the browser is required.  If it was placed in the Site\CSS folder it would apply to all browsers and would have unpredictable behaviour.

Can I make further changes to this?

Yes, see Customisation

I have the Pacific - A Community Portal CSS Theme applied?

It is highly recommended to remove this theme as there will be clashes between the two.

  • A simple way to remove this but retain the file for reference (if your own further custom changes were made) would be to append the file name, e.g. rename site.css to site.css.OldPacific
  • Please retest against at least IE/Edge (non-flex supported browsers) and Chrome/Firefox/Safari (flex supported browsers)

What testing was completed on this?

Each page was tested against Functionality and Usability

  • Functionality
  • Usability
DeviceOperating System
Samsung GalaxyAndroid
Samsung TabletAndroid

Is there an easy way to see how it would look on most devices?

Many browsers can emulate the look and feel of multiple devices.  Below is one way to do this using the Chrome browser

Please note: This is emulation and not exactly true to how the actual device will operate

  • Open the Chrome desktop browser 
  • Access your Community Portal URL
  • Press F12 to open the Developer Tools
  • You can change where this docked window appears by locating the three dots and selecting an appropriate 'Dock side'

    • Select the following Icon (Ctrl + Shift + M) to display the Device Toolbar

    • Using the drop down you can emulate many devices