Free Website a boon for Idaho district - Tech Learning

Free Website a boon for Idaho district

 With under 5,000 students, Lakeland School District in tiny Rathdrum, Idaho, doesn't have a huge I.T. budget. Yet Lakeland has the same need to communicate with parents, students and community members as any larger school system would.
Publish date:

With under 5,000 students, Lakeland School District in tiny Rathdrum, Idaho, doesn't have a huge I.T. budget. Yet Lakeland has the same need to communicate with parents, students and community members as any larger school system would. So when the opportunity to develop and publish a free professional website arose, the district moved quickly. Less than two weeks after signing up to use School Loop’s free website system, School Loop Standard, Lakeland already had its brand-new district website up and running.

“We wanted websites that were easy for staff to create and update without having to take up precious professional learning time to learn HTML coding. We also knew that the improved sites would allow for better interaction between teachers, parents and students,” said Chad Parson, Technology Support Manager for Lakeland School District.

The user-friendly nature of School Loop’s content management system meant that Lakeland was able to avoid long delays and to make its site available to the public quickly. The software uses drag-and-drop functionality for placement and organization of page elements such as tables, directories, news, blogs, images, and more. The software also utilizes “what you see is what you get” (WYSIWYG) technology to allow any user to create web content, even if they don’t have formal web design training. A variety of professionally-designed page templates allows districts like Lakeland to quickly create a consistent look and feel across all schools in the district.

School Loop also lightens the load on school IT departments by providing unlimited bandwidth and storage, high-speed networking and full automatic backup all at no cost. Unlike other free services of its kind, School Loop does not inundate its users with ads—in fact, the system is totally free of any advertisements.

“Schools have struggled to maintain professional websites because learning HTML programming can be extremely time consuming and hiring outside vendors to maintain sites for the district is expensive. With School Loop Standard, we take all of the logistical issues away and provide a great platform that makes it easier for districts to build their web presence,” said Mark Gross, founder and CEO of School Loop and a former social studies teacher.

Under the new system, Lakeland’s district office and schools can assign publishing rights to as many individuals as needed to avoid “information bottlenecks,” situations wherein the webmaster has more content to post than time to post it. Educators can even provide publishing rights to students, allowing them to gain experience in the 21st century skill of managing web content while simultaneously lightening the workload of school staff.



Rochester district updates website with Schoolwires

The Rochester City School District (NY) recently licensed the Centricity solution provided by Schoolwires. The district, which serves 32,000 students, will use the solution in pursuit of its goal of creating a user friendly, “interactive and engaging website” for community

Idaho video network expands educational opportunities

 In the state of Idaho, three metropolitan areas enjoy the technological amenities that most of us consider integral to everyday life. But 90% of the state is rural and mountainous, with little or no high-speed Internet access — creating a disparity in educational opportunities for students who lack access to modern learning tools.

Kentucky district approves website provider

Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS), serving more than 100,000 students in the greater Louisville market, announced that it has approved eChalk as a software partner for creating School and Teacher Websites.

Free Website Editor

Tip: For years I have kept my eyes open for a free and easy to use Web Page Editor. Personally, I like to use Dreamweaver to create Web pages, but it is expensive and I realize that it is way more powerful than most teachers (or even I) need. So, I was thrilled to come upon NVU. According to their web

Baltimore schools gain website platform

  Baltimore City Public Schools (City Schools) serves nearly 83,000 students through a broad range of 201 programs and schools. Under the leadership of Dr. Andrés A. Alonso since summer 2007, the school system has made dramatic gains in student achievement in recent years, and implemented a series of structural reforms to place more resources and decision-making authority in schools.

District website blocking policies

Question: Doug Johnson, an IT Guy reader, send in the following tip regarding district website blocking policies. The IT Guy says: Districts need to have a process in place for determining which Websites are blocked and which are not, just as they now have a process in place for dealing with materials