Please describe exactly how you set up your value list. It could be that an option specified for your value list is keeping some out of the list, but we need to know exactly what you have set up to know for sure.
the value list is looking up the people table, the field called school name and the second field from the town.
I need to know all the options specified. Did you sort the values by the first field or the second?
I would guess that you set the value list to sort values by the second field (towns). Thus, you see only one school for each town.
Sort the value list by the first field (Schools) and you should see all schools listed.
I think you should consider a conditional value list where you select a town in one field and then the value list lists all schools for that town in the schools drop down.
Take a look at the following links on conditional value lists. There's a lot of overlap between the first two links so you can read one and skim the other. The demo file gives you several examples of different conditional value lists so you can examine them to see how they are set up. If you are using FileMaker 12, you can open this demo file from your File menu to get a converted copy of the demo file that you can examine in FileMaker 12.
The last link discusses how to set up a chain of conditional value lists where the value selected in each conditional value list controls the values listed in the next value list.
Forum Tutorial: Custom Value List?
Knowledgebase article: http://help.filemaker.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/5833/kw/conditional%20value%20list
Hierarchical Conditional Value lists: Conditional Value List Question
Feel free to post follow up questions here if those links aren't enough to get your value lists working correctly.
I have it sorted by the first so that it shows all schools. I do not want to use a conditional value list here as many will not have a school based in the town they live in. So you need to select any random school.
I can't figure out why it's leaving some out, I enter all the schools the same way. It's driving me nuts.
Make sure that the field from which you get the school names is of type text, not number.
I do not want to use a conditional value list here as many will not have a school based in the town they live in. So you need to select any random school.
Keep in mind that the "town" selected to filter the value list need not be the town of the person's residence. It can be a separate field that they select just before selecting a school. That doesn't, however, explain why not all values for school are showing in your current value list...
I think I know the issue. Would the missing schools be exact duplicates of some that aren't missing?
Might you have say two schools named "Jefferson Elementary" and you see only one such school from one town and not the other?
If so, this is an inherent limitation of how table based value lists work. There are several alternate approaches that can be used to get around this issue if I am right about what is happening here.
You are exactly right, it's when there are mulitple of the same name that is is leaving the names off the value list!
Basically on a layout based on another table related to this one I had a field for the drop down list that was the School Name and Town and it then it filled in the address and phone of the school once once was selected. So I would need to duplicate that behaviour in a way that would show all the schools even if similar names.
One method to deal with this is to use the conditional value list approach, the user selects a town and then they select from just the schools from that town. The "town" they select need not be the town they specify as their address.
Another method is to use a script to handle the duplicate names issue. See this demo file:
FileMaker 12 users: https://dl.dropbox.com/u/78737945/SimpleNameLookupDemo.fmp12
Pre FileMaker 12 Users: https://dl.dropbox.com/u/78737945/SimpleNameLookupDemo.fp7