Elgin Area School District U-46 has launched a new website for the district and individual schools with a customer service tool to better engage with audiences across multiple devices.
Sporting a sleek, modern design, the website features more multimedia elements, easier navigation, and a responsive design allowing pages to display better on smaller screens such as smartphones or tablets.
"A school's website is one of the primary ways parents and families stay connected to their child's school," U-46 CEO Tony Sanders said. "In the mobile age, U-46 had to have a website that works and looks just as good on a cellular phone as on a desktop."
School and district pages include global icons allowing schools to spotlight in-demand information.
Icons can be used to view lunch menus, access the Infinite Campus parent portal, and get information on bus routes and suggestions on how to get more involved.
The district also has launched "Let's Talk!," an online customer service tool the school board approved in June. It is available for several departments: Human Resources, Business Services, School and Community Relations, Food and Nutrition Services, Student Registration, and School Safety and Culture.
Anyone can submit questions and comments, which will be routed to appropriate team members who will receive automatic notifications and reminders.
"Let's Talk!" provides a dashboard and reporting options to allow the district to measure the timeliness and satisfaction of staff responses from each department.
Next spring, the district will add remaining instructional and operational departments to "Let's Talk!" and extend the customer service tool to all schools during the 2018-19 school year.
Officials said the website and talk tool will help gather feedback about critical issues, provide increased accountability and build stronger relationships with the district's 11 communities.
"We have long aimed to be responsive and transparent, but this customer service tool really helps us track and improve on those efforts," Sanders said. "We're excited to see how 'Let's Talk!' can help us improve our relationships with our employees, parents, students and community members."