Planar Photonic Circuits can perform many useful functions in optical communications systems, such as wavelength division multilplexing (WDM), optical channel add/drop, fibre/waveguide coupling, and amplifier gain equalization. They perform these functions by the interaction of the device structure with the light inside them. There are very effective and proven numerical methods available for modelling this interaction, such as the Beam Propagation Method (BPM), the Finite Difference Time Domain (FDTD) method, and coupled mode theory (CMT). However, these methods work on a microscopic level (typically the smallest distance is about 0.1 microns), but photonic circuits, on the other hand, can occupy an entire wafer (scale: 10 cm). The analysis must span 5 or more orders of magnitude in the change in scale. The successful analysis needs to combine the basic microscopic techniques with an approach at a more abstract, or system, level. It is interesting that software designed for the analysis of optical communication systems can be applied to planar photonic circuits. This paper shows an example of a practical photonic circuit, a lattice filter, that cannot be analysed by BPM alone. It will be demonstrated that when used with a system level analysis, the whole device can be simulated.