School Website Design
Sir William Borlase’s Grammar School in Marlow, Buckinghamshire engaged us to do their School Website Design. We were tasked to revamp their old site from scratch using the popular WordPress Software. We did this using the powerful WordPress software and the very powerful XTheme from Theme Co which our own site runs on. We also were asked to help with new branding guidelines.
Talks re: the new site started in April. The school were keen for students to have an input and so some of the initial meetings were with some of the schools students in their Engineering Society. These students had already created their own site for their society using google sites, so it was great to get their perspective. The students also gave their input along the way, and one even did a bit of the coding. During the initial talks we discussed all of their needs. They were keen to move away from the model of the IT Department doing all of the updates, and allow administration staff to alter things themselves. This would ensure the school website would stay fresh and current.
One of the key elements for the new school website design was to create an online prospectus. Alongside a prospectus document, the school website would contain extended information and current activities. The basis for this concept was a number of words which senior management felt described the vision of the school. We then set about the somewhat laborious, but essential task of choosing the right photographs. The school had recently had some professional photography done by Jenny Birchmore of Jenny Photography in Holyport. Jenny photographed the school beautifully and it was easy to choose appropriate photographs.
XTheme bundles the powerful and versatile Slider Revolution. We used this on the front page to display the sequence of photos and words. It’s great to build a slider with this plugin. It’s so easy to update whenever it is required, and you can build in all sorts of different layers.
The school website design was to include a carousel of images linking to key pages on the website. For this we used the powerful responsive wordpress carousel slider and video lightbox from Wonderplugin. It’s a great carousel plugin which has a number of different skins and you can use a variety of media. It’s basically brilliant!!!!!
The school needed a way for users to download documents easily. We found a great free plugin called ‘Delightful Downloads’ which does exactly what is says on the tin. This plugin is really powerful. We wanted a way for administration staff to easily upload documents without having to edit pages. One great function of this plugin is that it auto-generates lists of downloads via shortcodes. For example you can ask it list all documents related to year 7 together, and sort it by date, or title. There is also the ability to schedule the downloads to go live.
To Be Continued…..
More on this website soon!