In today’s world, it’s rare to find a business or an organization that doesn’t have a website
A school website is an online communication/interaction platform between your school and community. In this technology era every schoool should have its own website where administrators can publish important information about the school and its activities making them easily accessible for parents & students.
A school web sites purpose I feel is simple: To communicate what is happening in the school. To allow parents, our clients, to see deeper into what is happening in the school they are sending their child to everyday. Every teacher must post what is happening in their classroom. What a concept! To have everyone communicating the same way via the web in one easy to find location for parents. Now thats the purpose of a school web site!
I would add that another part does not address parents, but students themselves and also prospective students and parents. Students access any LMS or other applications available to them through the website and prospective families search for information about the school.
I’d say the purpose is to communicate what the school is about and what goes on in it; it’s the public face and door into the school.
I also agree that a CMS is critical to the job, it allows great flexibility, especially since users can post their own content without any knowledge of HTML.
Students should be in charge, with supervision and help from a tech. person. It didn’t work for us this year, but I’ll try a different approach next time around.
Benefits of Having an Active School Website
Websites can be divided into the following three types:
1. Bad school website – This is a website that has a terrible layout that confuses, annoys, and hurts the viewers’ eyes. Bad websites have terrible navigation and too much color, animation effects, etc.
2. Good school website – This is the typical school website – has a great layout, good navigation, professional appearance, and good content. However, it lacks one important aspect that is supposed to draw traffic – interactivity.
3. Effective school website – This is what school websites should be. This kind of website has the characteristics of a good website and interactive features and it is able to anticipate and address the needs of its visitors.
A school with an effective website will always enjoy the following benefits
Save money, effort, and time
If your school has its own effective website, you will have an instant online brochure. The administrators of the school would not need to worry about print or TV ads to promote the school. And there would be no need to print materials and announcements for parents and other members of the school community. This saves money, time, effort, and paper.
Be available all the time
Through an effective school website, parents, alumni, and other visitors could access salient information about the school from anywhere, anytime, even beyond office hours, as long as there is an internet connection.
Provide motivation/ reward for students
Posting the students’ excellent work on the website is a great way to praise them and their works.
Keep parents well-informed
A school website will help keep parents & students up to date with what is happening within the school community, latest news, events, term dates etc. Newsletters are easily subscribed to and sent out to parents. Website can be used to publish forms and other important documents required by parents such as application forms, requirement documents hence making them easily accessible by every one even within the comfort of their home.
An effective website can also be used as a teaching tool that extends beyond the walls of the classroom. Teachers can post useful links and other teaching materials. Teachers can also utilize forums or message boards to extend class discussions
Develops communication/ writing skills
The content written by the students sharpens writing skills. The interaction the website provides develops communication skills.
Provide educational support
Students can get tutorial lessons through podcast and other useful materials.
The website can be the place to post the schedule and process of enrollment. It can also be used to house the enrolment procedure itself, just like the website of most universities.
Provide immediate feedback
The morale of the teachers, students, and school administrators can be raised through the immediate feedback/ comments visitors could leave.
Serve as a database
An effective website can also serve as the storage of backup files about the school, the teachers, and the students.
Main way that people will find your school
Most people now primarily use the internet when they want to find information, and Google is often the first place they go.When looking for a school, they will either type in the name of your school, or a keyword like ‘schools in Chegutu. You want to make sure that the first thing they see is a link to your website, otherwise you could be missing out to the competition.
Having a well-designed, professional looking website, will also provide credibility to your school.
Cost saving & maintainability
Unlike print media, a website is easy to change, and can be updated as frequently as needed. In addition, the cost to change content on a website is only measured through time, whereas a piece of printed material includes time and material.
The importance of having a good school website
School website is very important for making a good first impression as it often is the first contact that people have with the school. Therefore, the school website affects the overall image and reputation of your school which can lead to increased admissions. Having a good school website is also very important for delivering a good user experience for its regular users, including teachers, students and parents.
Here are some of the most important features of why having a good school website matters.
The features of a good school website
The overall look of the website is the first thing that users notice when they visit the website. This includes the layout, colours, images and fonts you use to build the website. Make sure that all these factors are considered when building the website as they contribute towards creating an overall impression of the school.
A good school website is expected to include a range of quality content. Remember to add basic information like contact details, welcoming messages, school value and images to the homepage followed by learning resources, curriculum information, news, events calendar and other school information.
The website design and good content are very important, however, if visitors cannot easily find the information they are looking for, they will become frustrated and it will negatively affect the overall user experience.
This is especially important when talking about parents researching the schools for their children because if they find the website impossible to navigate, they might just leave the website and search for another school.
The right message
Make sure your website sends the right message to its visitors and it actually represents the values and promotes the strengths of your school. Your website is very important when it comes to creating the best image of your school.
This is another very important feature that should not be ignored in the modern days. Most users, including teachers, parents and students will visit the school website on their mobile devices. Therefore, it is important to make sure that the website remains clear on all devices.
It is engaging
Finally, make it engaging!
Having a school website is very important, but making it a good website is what creates a good image of your school and leads to the positive user experience.