Our Thinking

New website enhances parent connection with Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board

We recently created a website for the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board. The web has changed dramatically since the school board’s previous site was launched in 2006: technology, accessibility legislation, social media, mobile, and most importantly parental expectations. The new site is a useful communication tool that encourages engagement—online, at home, school, and within the Catholic community.

The following press release was used to announce the launch of the school board’s site:

Toronto, ON – School closures. Bus cancellations. Weather advisories. These urgent updates are important for the families of over 7.8 million school-aged children across Canada. The Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board has launched a new website that not only addresses urgent alerts, but it also enhances connections for parents, the community, and parishes, with its schools and the school board.

“Our school board has always placed a premium on parent engagement and ease of access to information about programs and services,” says Bruce Campbell, general manager of communications & community relations for the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board. “Now, when parents search for us online, our new website better responds to the demand for information that users expect. At the same time, it better reflects the dynamic and Catholic nature of our board.”

The website’s new responsive design was developed with the needs of today’s parents and students in mind. It allows visitors to access the site on desktop and mobile devices without compromising the layout, features, or overall function. This site is also compliant with the new Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).

Parents and visitors will benefit from the following new features:

  • Bright pop-up announcement/alerts (i.e. school closures, weather conditions)
  • Multi-navigation access points to information
  • Current school board information
  • Impactful photographs of Dufferin-Peel students
  • School spotlight section
  • Information for newcomer families (translations also available in four languages)

In addition to launching the new school board website, 149 individual school sites were redesigned to align with the new look and capability of the board’s site. Important Board news and alerts are displayed in addition to school-specific information.

Notes Randall Craig, president of 108 ideaspace, “The needs, priorities, and web expectations of parents (and other stakeholders) have changed over the years. During the design phase, we recognized the importance of addressing these needs to keep parents involved in the educational experience of their children.”

The Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board is one of the largest and most diverse school boards in Ontario. It currently serves approximately 84,000 students in 149 schools located throughout Mississauga, Brampton, Bolton, Caledon, and Orangeville. It is the goal of the board to provide quality education to students in a setting, which fosters Catholic values and beliefs. More: www.dpcdsb.org

108 ideaspace is dedicated to helping clients engage their stakeholders by innovating in strategy, technology, and design. 108 ideaspace develops web, social media, and mobile solutions that leverage and extend strategy. More: ideas108.wpengine.com

Danielle Norris is the Marketing Services Specialist at 108 ideaspace inc. – a consulting firm that extends business strategies by innovating in strategy, technology, and design. To learn more about 108 ideaspace, visit ideas108.wpengine.com.

Danielle Norris