With the proliferation of internet as a source of mass communication media, many organizations see the advantages of creating a platform in the cyberspace to reach out to its “casual and intentional visitors” (Tubin & Klein, Fall 2007). Gracefields Kindergarten is one such organization. The principal, Mrs Joyce Teo, is keen to explore websites as their tool in the cyberspace to promote the school as well as to improve teacher-parent communication (personal communication, February 4, 2010).
Giladi (2004) referrred a website to be akin to the window for the school’s culture (as cited in Tubin & Klein, Fall 2007) and “the website should represent the company in a meaningful and positive light” (Levis, Helfert, & Brady, 2008).
In this technological age, “Companies around the world use the internet and design sophisticated and attractive websites to promote and sell their products online to a larger spectrum of customers. This trend is becoming increasingly popular and is now highly used.” (Vrontis, Ktoridou, & Melanthiou, 2006). “Singaporeans are becoming more sophisticated internet users” and “the proportion of Internet users among Singapore’s resident population rose by 25 percentage points” between 2000 and 2005 (Lee, 2006). Therefore, it has become even more pertinent that organizations have a presence in the world wide web and having a website is one way to increase web visibility.
This white paper attempts to discuss what a website is, how we can create a website using web host services and the benefits and limitations of a website. It further discusses the situation at Gracefields Kindergarten and a proposed solution.
About the organization
Gracefields Kindergarten has a history of about 16 years, with 2 schools in Singapore at Gilstead and Teck Whye. For the purpose of this white paper, references are made to the school at Gilstead. The school aims to provide all round development of a child through its graded program. The school does this through (Joyce Teo, personal communication, February 4, 2010) - • Providing a conducive environment which responds to the children’s need to be nurtured in the process of learning to find out and discover knowledge for everyday living • Focusing on Cognitive (Intellectual) Self Development, Social and Moral Self Development, Creative Self Development, Emotional Health Development and Physical Development. • Ensuring teaching staffs are qualified teachers who are registered with the Ministry of Education and who share the common mission to assist the child in realizing his/her maximum potential for growing and learning. To achieve this, class size and number of children per teacher is kept to an acceptable level. • Offering quality, comprehensive, practical and reliable child development program in a supportive and stimulating environment.
The school continuously works towards attracting more students into its cohort and the principal, Joyce Teo, believes that an existent of a school website would enhance their marketing efforts on top of the usual print media. The website would also facilitate better teacher-parent communication, the other objective of the effort (personal communication, February 4, 2010). What is a Website?
“A web site is essentially information in the form of text and graphics which may be extended with other media such as sound, stored electronically as files on a hard disk. The hard disk is located in a computer known as a web server connected to the Internet. Files on the web server are therefore accessible via the Internet or on an internal network (intranet)” (Baggott, Nichol, & Watson, 1999, p. 105). Additionally, Baggott, Nichol, & Watson (1999) states that “a web site can give you access to an almost infinite range of information including academic and teaching materials in a form that you can...