September 19, 2009

Website or Blog?

Writing about web page

It is the start of the academic year for schools.  I am working with Leigh Church of England Primary School, Tile Hill, Coventry to reorganise their web profile.  Many schools have a traditional website with static front page and sub pages.

At Leigh, I am offering the blogging concept.  I am interested to see, not only how the site grows, but in what direction? For example, there is a community of 155 children with home school links by the normal pupil-post.  Will it make a difference to have every newsletter, homework task or permission slip posted online.  The use of the mobile phone is also interesting as texting is everywhere, but rarely used from school to parent.  Furthermore, email is used in the real world, but again very rare from school/teacher to parent or child.

I am trying to close all obvious loops.  For example, the site should answer any and all questions a parent could ever ask.  By using the Google's Blogger and associated Picasa 3, documents and calendar, life should be simple and easy.  However, there are many barriers with schools.  I have found it frustrating and time consuming to negotiate the Virtual Learning Environment i.e. Moodledo.  For those of you who do not know, the government is states all schools should have a VLE by 2010, but little is said what the schools should do with it. OFSTED produced a report, but surveyed only six primary schools.

See the site at:

I would like to hear from anyone who knows of schools using blogging sites as their main portal.  Also, from schools who have broken from the pack to use technology that is fast and free, delivered to a mobile or even a school that uses Twitter.  In my opinion, using a blog site or twitter to distribute important and urgent information must be more reliable than the note home and lost in a puddle.

- One comment Not publicly viewable

  1. Danny

    Mike I am using WordPress_MU to host our District Site, our two school sites and also allow teachers or groups to create their own sites that can be public or private. We try to use as many free services or free software that we can. We are in the process of moving most of our student computers to Edubuntu. We use a great deal of virtual servers through VM Ware. We have been using Google Apps for education for two years and are going to push it district wide for all email hopefully by December.

    My goal for the new website redesign was communication. There is several ways for people to get info from our school; Twitter feeds for school lunch and upcoming events, RSS feeds for school news and Google Calendars and Maps. I am still trying to add everything that I think would be useful. I hope to have it close by Christmas Break but it will always be a work in progress. I hope to have a new blog post up in a couple of weeks about the process we went through to build the new website and set up all the services.

    I am glad to see others using more dynamic websites for education. I would love to talk to more about this. Maybe we can set up a Skype call.

    04 Oct 2009, 22:22

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