With the upcoming 2017-2018 School Year, the UPSD Technology Department has launched a new website! The new website, www.upsd.org, launched on Thursday, August 3. The team set an ambitious goal of creating a modern, attractive, well-organized website from scratch in only three months. We achieved that goal, which has allowed us to launch the new website several weeks before the 2017-2018 school year starts. A brief summary of the project follows.
In the autumn of 2016, the District recognized a need for a new website. The old website, which followed the standards and best practices of the time it was designed, had become outdated by modern standards. Modern website design principles include large vivid pictures, content tiles, high-contrast and flat font, accessibility to visitors with disabilities, and responsiveness to viewing on mobile devices.
Over the winter months, parents, staff and community members completed a survey on their preferences for a new website. A team of teachers, support staff, and administrators then developed a list of requirements for the new website. Armed with that list, the District then sought and evaluated proposals from several different vendors. The District selected a single vendor that would best meet the needs and at a cost that was sustainable.
In March 2017, Bryan Ruzenski, Director of Technology, presented a proposal to the School Board to design a new, modern website. The video of that meeting can be found here, and on the UPSD Youtube channel. The Board agreed to proceed with the project, and authorized the administration to obtain a contract proposal from the leading vendor.
In April 2017, the Board voted to award a contract to Active Insight Technologies, the parent company of Finalsite, to design, host, and support a new website. The annual fee represents a savings of $3,000 per year over the previous website. By awarding the contract, the District received a new, modern website at a lower cost compared to the old website.
In May and June 2017, Finalsite and the District worked together to design the website you see today. Once the design was finalized, the Technology Department got to work putting the content into it. It was a tedious process, but also a rewarding one. Countless hours have gone into the content phase. What you see now is the culmination of a lot of thoughtful, hard work.
We hope you enjoy the new website and find it inviting, attractive, and easy to navigate.
Director of Technology