Digital Marmalade were approached by Tom Attwood, chairman of the Attwood Academies Trust who sponsor schools to undertake a large project overhauling a number of school websites.
Bexhill Academy, formerly Bexhill High, is the first of a number of schools sponsored by the trust to get a website makeover.
The old website, although functional, was out of date and needed to be re-designed taking into account their new branding. It needed to be easier to use, able to be updated regularly, and most importantly make the school look attractive to prospective parents and students.
We undertook planning with Bexhill to establish what pages needed to be included in the site to best get across the vast amounts of information they had contained in PDFs and on the current website. As well as thinking about this individual school however, we had to create a template that could then be rolled out, working across a number of school sites.
To help manage this, we developed core pages, handled by specific modules in a custom CMS built in Marmalade Suite. Additionally however, we built a dynamic 'Page Content' module which allows Bexhill (and subsequent schools) to add pages on the fly. This not only gives them flexibility over their content, it means that pages can be, for example, seasonal or temporary and prevent the site getting clogged up.
To go hand in hand with this, we also built a document manager where documents and links can be added from one place in the CMS anywhere on the website, with their own information, title, and button label allowing for greater flexibility over content.
Other custom modules include a diary manager, staff management module, and news.
So far the website is receiving good feedback and the next step is to start rolling out the template across other new academies. Watch this space for more news.