“From the front perspective, it looks the same, the layout is pretty much kept the same, we tried not to change it up too much so that parents wouldn’t have a difficult time finding things in the places that they normally found them before,” said Destiny Fitzgerald, Communications Coordinator for the school district. “On the back end side, there are places for teachers and staff members to be able to log in and see information that’s specific to them.”
Some features that parents and community members will notice are the calendar and search features which have both improved.
“(The new search) has a much better indexing feature to make it easy for people to find things,” Fitzgerald said. “It’s still indexing every day and adding more things every day.”
Fitzgerald thinks the new site looks better visually, and it has more space for student highlights, news stories and photographs of what’s happening.
The district plans to add more information to the site than there was previously. “We want to make sure that we have more information and more in-depth information for each and every department, not just a brief overview,” Fitzgerald said.
The site, powered by Edline, has been up since July 1, and there haven’t been too many glitches despite a quick move to the new site.
The district found out in March that the company they were using, Power IT, was going out of business, and their site would go offline on June 30.
Although the district regularly looks at other sites and checks what’s available, Fitzgerald said they weren’t planning to move to a new site at the time.
“It was a very fast scramble,” Fitzgerald said. “We had a very short turn around time to make it happen.”
The district has a survey on their website to ask what people think. Fitzgerald hasn’t received too much feedback yet, but what she has received has been positive.
“The few things we got at the very beginning were from educators that were looking for things that they just weren’t quite sure where they were moved to or if they still existed,” Fitzgerald said. “They helped us to identify a couple little hiccups. There was one piece where someone was looking for something that hadn’t been turned on yet and they were upset about that but other than that, and now that feature has been turned on so they’re happy, so far so good.”
The website includes a website tips section, but Fitzgerald thinks people may not know it’s there because she gets questions about things that are in that section, which is located at the bottom of the “Parents & Students” drop-down menu and also under “Educators & Staff.”
The tips section says that although the site may look considerably different, the navigation tree is much the same.
The main menu buttons including “Parents & Students,” “Educators & Staff” and “Our Schools” still have most of the same items under their drop-down menus.
The tips section also recommends using the website with Chrome, Firefox or Safari because Internet Explorer sometimes does not work well with the new site.
Contact Julie Herrmann at email@example.com.