Hebrew High School of New England (HHNE) is a private, modern orthodox Jewish day school serving the Greater Hartford, New Haven, and Western MA communities. The school’s goal is to provide students with excellent college preparatory courses along with an equally strong Judaics program.
HHNE’s previous website needed updating; visually, current content, and functionality. The site was constructed over many years, pieced together with several different programs and scripts by multiple people, and the current administrative team had no way to update the site without taking a class in HTML, PHP, or continuing to outsource to more programmers.
The goals for the new site was to market the school to prospective new students, allow for activity sign ups and payments, accept online donations, and help current student families communicate information via a news section, school calendar, course info section, and a faculty information section.
Gilday Creative Plan
The faculty and staff wanted a website that they could maintain/update post launch, so we built the site on the WordPress platform. WordPress is a user-friendly platform for users with little programming knowledge to update their site after it launches, but does require experience to build and develop and website. After we design and build a website, we conduct training with our clients so they have knowledge to make minor additions and edits.
We started the project by working on the home page of the site. We added Quick links to cut through the clutter and saved students, families, or prospective students time by quickly getting them where they wanted to go. We also implemented a google calendar, as it’s the workhorse of HHNE’s school communication. Also, on the home page is a column for recent events and news, so the school can highlight student achievement, fundraising projects, or special events they are hosting.
Responsive design (i.e., mobile friendly) was also a crucial element of HHNE’s website design. It means their website can be accessed by a wide variety of mobile devices. Each web page is readable and usable on a desktop computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. It automatically resizes and reformats the pages so they easily viewable on any device.
This was all built using WordPress, a user friendly CMS (Content Management System), that allows a user to log in via a web browser and make changes, add content and images, and keep the website current, all without having any advanced programming knowledge. As the school year progresses, faculty and staff can easily update their calendar, news events, information for perspective students, giving full ownership to the client.