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Sept. 18, 2017 - Plano ISD Website Wins Award

 

webaward 2017 We are proud to announce that the Plano ISD website has been awarded the “2017 School Standard of Excellence” award from Web Marketing Associations' 21st annual International WebAward Competition. This is the premier contest for web developers and marketers, and is open to all organizations and individuals involved in the process of developing websites for organizations, companies and the government. This year, entries in 96 industry categories were judged based on design, ease of use, copywriting, interactivity, use of technology, innovation and content. 

Work on our new website began in Fall 2015 and included vendor presentations and submission of an RFP. The project has been planned and executed by the technology and communications departments under the leadership of Dan Armstrong assistant superintendent for technology services, Karla Oliver assistant superintendent for government, community and planning initiatives, Matt Frey executive director for instructional technology and Lesley Range-Stanton executive director for communications. Tracy Martin, instructional technology specialist is the project manager. Also involved in the project are: Dana Adams, instructional technology; Brian Bowes, instructional technology; Elaine Copeland, instructional technology; Gwendolyn Guthrie, communications; Debby Hayward, communications; and Brittnea Ussery, communications.

Communications team with Dana Adams and Tracy Martin from Instructional Technology with cake

The communications department with (inset photo left to right) Dana Adams  and Tracy Martin from Instructional Technology celebrated the award with cake.

 

The old website was last redesigned more than 10 years ago, and since that time, technology has evolved. The new site contains changes such as:

  • Our newly designed website is responsive to mobile devices. The power of the web is no longer tied to a desk. Responsive websites are able to display information based on the size of the device, meaning users are able to interact as efficiently on their smart phones or tablets as they are on their desktops.
  • The new site includes a restructured organization envisioned to be more intuitive to the user.
  • The site is accessible to users with assistive needs. Plano ISD is committed to ensuring that people with disabilities have the same access to the electronic and information technologies that are available to people without disabilities. Our new website strives to meet or exceed the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C’s) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA. Accessibility is an important part of the new site, and information on accessibility is included as a link at the bottom of every page on the site.

The new site went live in the Spring of 2017. As users were getting accustomed to the change, a user survey was generated to gather input regarding what could be improved, and what we were doing right. Valuable information was collected helping to make our site more user friendly. Currently, the web design work is still ongoing as a few remaining school sites are going live, the athletics site is gearing up for their update and the launch of the mobile app is on the horizon.

With nearly 9,000 active pages, the Plano ISD website has a large web presence, serving our nearly 54,000 students, their families and more than 6,000 employees, as well as the business community and families relocating to the district.

The website reflects every aspect of the district from individual teacher pages to financial reporting, and more. Content was one of the criteria for the award, and keeping that site content accurate and updated is a challenge. Thank you to all who have mastered the new software and are updating the website every day. You have played an important part in winning this award.