As a web-based media intern for Disability Rights IOWA (DRI), I helped design the website in cooperation with the executive director and a web design company that DRI hired to code the new site. I worked with both parties to realize DRI’s vision while implementing W3C’s web accessibility standards. The transition from the old site to a more concise website took a lot of time, but its enhanced accessibility and more user-friendly design now allows people easy access to resources and assistance regardless of disability.
Working on the District 155 websites with the director of technology and the director of communications, we identified functional and aesthetic parts of the website to update. The old website ran on a version of SharePoint that was quickly becoming obsolete, requiring any editors to use an Internet Explorer plugin to add or change content. And each page of the district and school websites looked lists of links or folders instead of an organized website.
We took steps to create the new website on SharePoint 2013, which offers more ease of use with a “What You See Is What You Get” editor and a more organized system of folders for website administrators. Users now see only the most important links and navigation when entering the homepage and are not overwhelmed by a list of bare links.
We also structured the new site to put a larger focus on school news than general information about the district. I now constantly update the websites to show parents and community members the great work that students do in class and in their towns.