New to edugeek but been advised you are the people to talk to. I am a governor at a school and I have been asked to look into creating a new website for them. I have created a couple of very basic sites previously but by no means an expert.
So I am after a bit of advice.
Who do you use for your web hosting? Also, what criteria do you use? Price, options, support etc. I have also only ever used plesk but heard good things about cpanel - do you have a preference?
What is the main purpose of this site? (Just information about the school or content management and displaying news of events)
How much do you think it will be used? (Will every parent of current students be accessing or just prospective ones)
Will it be used to host any learning content? (ILT's or homework/interactive exercises)
Our site is hosted on a shared fasthosts server but I sometimes wish it wasn't as it can be very slow at times. We could really do with dedicated because of the content management system (Edugeeks own Joomla package)
I have a personal site which is again shared but on just hosts running wordpress and is faster than the schools site. Uses CPanel which is very intuitive.
Hi. Thought I'd get in on this post too. We're currently using a Names Co shared server but our site has been lagging recently. We changed the SQL database to another server which seems to have made things speed up a bit, but our Names Co plan expires in January so I think it would be a great opportunity to go elsewhere.
Can anyone recommend any dedicated serve plans out there?
The site uses Joomla CMS and is the main portal for prospective students, and a source of news information for students, staff and parents (large traffic volume).
Remember the school website represents the school
Pay some one who can update , create and host a website .
Otherwise get the school techy to do it ;)
Your local authority or RBC mau offer a web host service as part of the central service, or maybe host it internally and publish to the web alternatively use Vida Host?
All depends what functionality you intend to offer thru the site. The quality of the website is only as good as the combination of skills of the designer, and the person generating the content to put on the site. The speed of the site is only as good as the connection you run it off and the quality of the hardware. The security of the website is only as good as the person writing the code.
cPanel provide a lifetime license (£15) for educational establishments to allow you to run your own webserver inhouse should you desire, which allows you to tie your site into internal authentication systems (eg: ActiveDirectory) easily. If running a VLE, then an inhouse webserver can also be easily tied into school MIS system to offer parents access to data etc. Again, all depends on the skills of the person doing the job as to what they can ultimately achieve.
eg: Thru our self-hosted self-designed site, staff can reset student passwords & profiles without needing to bother IT Support Dept. Parents can access all data for their child thru our VLE as it's integrated with our Facility install. Premises staff can control the environmental / Building Management / CCTV systems from home. All registration is done online... all behaviour/rewards are logged online. Our site is also compatible with mobile devices, so PE staff can use it to take registers electronically whilst out on the playing field using their mobile phone. I can add staff to various permissions groups in ActiveDirectory from my iPhone whilst I'm sat on the loo should I so desire.
It all really depends what you actually want from the site...
New here also - and have a similar need - as a govenor of a small village school I offered to sort out our ailing school website. Formed a small team which is gathering suitable content. Its down to me to sort out the technical side - on a very small budget hence I'm not simply going to the pros and getting them to do it. Showed them the Edugeek Joomla template - they all loved this as do I, so this would be the way to go, unfortunately errors appear when I tried it out on a 'wamp' install.
I've checked with the LEA as they currently host our site, they offer different services including php/mysql offerings (which would support Joomla) but they are not as competitive as the big hosting companies out there. Our plan is currently to sort out web content, work out the technical side, choose a hosting company, get a working website up and running (hopefully), then transfer the school domain from the LEA to this new site.
The challenge will then to train those responsible for content on how to update it, and then get them to update it regularly.
Then what about the longer term - who's going to support this when I'm long departed from the role and parents have moved on?
Not a simple project, when you look at it in more detail, but one has to do something!
If you're new to webhosting this is often the best way to go. Many authorities now offer websites as part of their service to schools. I would much rather create my own, but as we have an AST Teacher for ICT we're having to showcase the counties (Lancashire to be precise) Content Management System and it works well.
Originally Posted by jamesreedersmith
If you have the time to learn and support the school's website (which often involves either doing all the updates for the school or training someone to do it) then investigate various options. I have a reseller server with WebHostingBuzz that I use for myself and my freelance clients sites, and I've had no issues with it. They are an American based firm, but have just opened a UK branch. They are very supportive.
If however, you need supporting through, or don't know if you would be able to support the school to the extent they could need, then it's probably better to look towards your LEA to see if they offer such a service.