Categories: Education, Responsive, Web Design

Union Public Schools

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unionps.org » screenshots of new Union website
I was thrilled when I looked at it early this morning! It is so bright and colorful—fun yet professional—much easier to navigate, and looks great on mobile devices as well. Please pass along our compliments to your team for not just bringing us a “responsive” website, but “being responsive” to our goals/ requests in the process.— Gretchen Haas-Bethell – Executive Director of Communications – Union Public Schools
screenshot of previous union website created nearly 10 years ago.

This is the second custom website that we have had the privilege of creating for Union Public Schools, one of Oklahoma largest school districts. The first website we built was launched nearly 10 years ago and resulted in high praise and multiple awards for the school district. The web, along with the devices used to access it, are rapidly evolving. Union’s previous website served them well for several years but it was time to take their website to the next level using today’s technology and a greater emphasis on the mobile user. Union Schools contacted Creative State to once again create a website that would properly reflect the high standards Union Public Schools sets for itself.

Screenshot of mobile device

Designed For Mobile

The new website was designed with today’s mobile devices in mind. Every aspect of the site needed to work as well on a mobile device as it did on a desktop browser. The website scales to fit any screen size and all elements are optimized for touch devices. In the past mobile sites would only give you a small selection of the whole website. With responsive design we are able to present all of the content to the mobile user including photos and videos.

Screenshots of Union's photo and video capabilities

Photo and Video

The new site utilizes a custom video gallery that allows the district to manage all their videos via YouTube and our system will automatically places them onto the website. Different playlists can be added to specific pages from within the site’s content management system. The site also features several different photo gallery options.

Alert System

Screenshote of Union's Alert Notification

Important information slides down from the top of the screen pushing the entire site down. This makes it hard to miss without being overly intrusive. The alert continues to load on all pages as you browse the site until the user closes it, helping ensure important messages are seen.

More Project Details

Union Public Schools has been a client of Creative State for more than a decade. When they first approached us they had an outdated website that was being managed and maintained by college students, interns, and other unpaid resources. The result was a site that was poorly organized, difficult to navigate, slow, and susceptible to hackers. We built a custom site that tied into the district's the user database which made it easy for staff and teachers to login, manage their teacher pages, and submit events and requests.

Over the last 10 years we have added new features and improved the site each year. In 2016 the district decided to embark on a complete overhaul of the platform that was built 10 years ago. Creative State worked with the district to facilitate meetings and focus groups. Staff, teachers, parents, students and administrators all had the opportunity to provide their input and ideas. Those ideas were prioritized into a list of objectives for the new website.

Creative State then provided wireframes. The wireframes were used for discussion purposes and to help refine the overall layout and organization of the site. Once the wireframes were approved we did the initial design concepts. We worked with the district to refine that design. Once the design was approved we built the new fully responsive site based on all the input we received.

The new site is easy to navigate, mobile friendly, colorful, and reflects the image the district wanted to portray. The site has won multiple awards. It also includes an alert system that allows the district to communicate any breaking news. 

We provide ongoing support and strategy to Union Public Schools. We have an annual meeting to review the projects and initiatives from the previous 12 months and map out the plan for the next 12 months. 

We've developed a very close working relationship and we are proud of our long-standing association with Union Public Schools.

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