The Ministry of Education has consolidated its three major education websites into the education.govt.nz site, launched in June, at a cost of $1.2 million.
The new website replaces the ministry’s three main websites, minedu.govt.nz, lead.ece.govt.nz and educate.ece.govt.nz.
The ministry made the decision to develop the new website after receiving user feedback that the old Ministry of Education websites were hard to use and the content hard to read.
Ellen MacGregor-Reid, deputy secretary, strategy, planning and governance, says the new website ensures continuity and stability of a key communication channel, as the previous Minedu website was on an outdated and unsupported web platform.
The ministry began the original project to develop a new website in June 2013, MacGregor-Reid says. A beta site was delivered in May 2014, which was then removed the following March after the majority of content had been moved across to the new site. The old Minedu site was decommissioned in June 2015.
MacGregor-Reid says the website was developed in order to provide easier access to important ministry information for education professionals, parents and other interested people.
“The new website aligns with the ‘improving interaction with government’ targets for Better Public Service by moving to the Common Web Platform (the All of Government platform), setting the foundation for other ministry websites to be incorporated on the same platform,” she explains.
MacGregor-Reid says the new website is a key resource for educators to find out about education policy and administration requirements.
It includes information on Starting an Early Childhood Centre, Running a School, Supporting Students, and Managing School Property.
The homepage has education news for educators, parents and the general public covering early childhood, schooling and further education.
“The main focus for the short term is redesigning the home page to improve navigation to some content, and to provide more options for making news content more visible,” says MacGregor-Reid.
“We also intend to continue to re-write content and improve functionality.”
MacGregor-Reid says the website is a cost-effective channel, and receives over 480,000 page views per month.