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General Chat Thread, Writing the School website in General; Hi Everyone I need a bit of advice. I work at a large first school, part-time for 10 hours a ...
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    witch's Avatar
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    Writing the School website

    Hi Everyone
    I need a bit of advice. I work at a large first school, part-time for 10 hours a week. I look 40 computers, which vary from 4 years old to 7 years old, as well as the usual peripherals, antivirus updating etc. Generally speaking I don't have a huge amount to do unless loading software or ghosting old machines, unless something dreadful happens

    Recently the head has been going on about the website and how he wants it sorted out. The current website Ferndown First School is not good and it hasn't been sorted out for a long time. It is out of date and old fashioned. I think it is done in Front Page, but I am not sure. Currently one of the school governors handles it from his office.
    At this point you need to know that I know ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about web site creation, I have never done anything to do with it EVER.

    So, my boss comes to me and says that he wants the website sorted out. He is going to get the governor in to teach me how to do it, probably for one morning or less and then he expects me to sort it all out. He has also asked me to look at school websites to pick up examples of the sort of thing he wants, and he expects me to be able to create a whizzbang website.
    What I want to know is:
    Given my level of expertise, and the hours I work, is what he is asking feasible?
    Also, he then expects me to do the updating etc, which I think is admin, and not really my job? (websites are not mentioned in my job description anyway)
    I would be grateful for any input as I am really at a loss over this.
    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Re: Writing the School website

    Hiya ITWITCH

    On 10 Hours a week It would be possible to create a new school website, but that really depends on what your daily work load is like and how many days your 10 hours are spread over.

    Your best bet would be to create a site based on some form of CMS, my choice is http://www.joomla.org

    With a system like this you could get admin to update the site via a front end editor, leaving you to just lookafter the backend admin of the site.

    If you had all the initial content in digital form (word etc) And an ISP with the required software for Joomla you could prob setup a basic site (e.g all the static content about the school) in a day or two.

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    petectid's Avatar
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    Re: Writing the School website

    I'd would look into one of the free content managment systems available ie Mambo, Joomla etc. These will make life alot easier and you can produce web sites that look very professional. Your web host will need to support MySQL and PHP, though this is fairly standard now.

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    Re: Writing the School website

    What i would say is tell head yes you will look after it only if you are sent on a wesite design course (being taught by governor is not ok) and then fine will look after it but on understanding if you need something 'coding' then they will need to hire in someone


    Also make sure gets added to your job description...

    Russ

  5. #5
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    Re: Writing the School website

    Also if its not already part of your job, the added responsibility should come with extra money

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    Re: Writing the School website

    and yes cms is why to go

    russ

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    Re: Writing the School website

    If it's something that you would like to do then yes I'd agree with all of the above suggestions and for any site a cms is really the best thing to do.

    However if you don't want to do it then refuse as it's not in your job description don't get railroaded into doing something you don't want to do.

    Ben

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    witch's Avatar
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    Re: Writing the School website

    thanks
    I'm afraid that I don't even understand what you mean by:

    "And an ISP with the required software for Joomla"

    or"Your web host will need to support MySQL and PHP, though this is fairly standard now."
    And what backend admin would there be?
    I know I sound pathetic but it is just something I have never done. I think the website is on the admin network (which I am not allowed to touch) but I know nothing else about it.
    How can I find out about web hosts etc and anything else I need?
    If I were to use a CMS then could I import stuff from the current site or would it have to be all done again?
    It's not that I dont want to do it, just that I think that, at present, I can't do it and will look a complete prannock. I'm not the type to fiddle my way to competency, I like to know what I am doing.
    The head assures me that there is no money to pay for anything at all ever so asking for training etc is pointless.
    cheers

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    Re: Writing the School website

    Hi ITWITCH, Have a look at www.opensourcecms.com where you can try out live CMS scripts, including the ones mentioned above (under the 'Portal' tree). Hopwfully it will give you an insight into the admin areas and how to update pages.

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    Re: Writing the School website

    if it comes to itwitch let me know i wills et up sub domain on one of my sites that you can upload stuff have play around with

    russ

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    Re: Writing the School website

    @ITWITCH

    If you want local help - you're welcome to come and see us (we're just down the road!) and I'll show you the basics of what you'll need to know using our sites as a reference... and don't worry - it looks complex to begin with, but once you get started it's pretty simple...

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    Re: Writing the School website

    from the sounds of your knowledge, it looks like too much of a big job, to be suddenly landed in your lap. Just because a computer is involved, doesn't make you an expert at it. Making a website is easy.. making a good one involves more that technical prowess, it needs design skills as well.

    I tell him to get the governor to do the website, since he's the expert!

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    Re: Writing the School website

    Thanks for all that
    I will try and sort it out somehow

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    Re: Writing the School website

    Just like to add: Adding content is definately an admin job, and possibly a Teaching staff job if they want to add content themselves. Not yours anyway. If you did decide you wantd to take on the extra responsibility, your role would be to provide the technology, as in everything we do. The worth of your time would't be cost efective. Data entry is a lesser paid/ qualified persons' role.

    If they won't pay for training, it'll just take you longer. Depends wether or not you think that's a fun prospect.



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