Friday, April 17, 2009

Big things online in Clinton

As far as school Web sites go, Clinton is shooting for the stars.

As a parent, I want to know what's going on in my child's classroom. Since I work full time, clearly I cannot hang around her school all day (much as I wish I could!). So I'm pleased to announced that the Clinton Public School District is offering the next best thing. No, not Web cams, it's a vastly enhanced Web site where all teacher profile pages and classroom pages are centrally located and very easy to find.

We're in the process now of training all our teachers on how to use the new system. Once we get them all trained, we'll launch the new site. Mark your calendars for April 27. On that date, the current site will be replaced with one that is streamlined throughout, attractive, easy to navigate and chock-full of information for students, parents and school district employees.

I am the district Web master, but I cannot take all the credit. We partnered with a company called School Fusion to do this. They designed our beautiful new templates (like I said, check back with us on April 27), and provided us with all this great new functionality. We are adding student accounts over the summer, so when school starts in the fall, students will be members of their teachers' class pages (and can receive e-alerts when teachers post homework assignments, upcoming events and announcements), and parents too will have accounts. When parents log in, they will have a "My Family" page that shows what each of their child's teachers have posted on their class pages.

We're also switching to a new database system this summer, and parents can receive regular e-mails with their child's grades, attendance, etc.

How cool is this?

It's a lot of work on the front end, but I'm telling you, I can't wait to enroll my daughter in the Clinton School District this fall. It's going to be great having such easy access to her school. As it is, she sometimes gets busy and forgets to put her homework sheets in her backpack, and I don't know that we haven't done it all until she's in trouble the next day for incomplete work. I don't want to call the school every day to get her assignment list; what a relief that next year, I won't have to. :)

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