It can be difficult to decide whether your school website fits the bill when it comes to a range of compliance issues. Not only do school heads need to satisfy the needs of Ofsted, there are also the requirements of the GDPR or General Data Protection Regulation that came in this year to consider.
The reason for a full audit of your school website is to not only make sure you comply with the current list of requirements. You also need to be sure that your site fits the bill when it comes to communicating with the outside world, particularly parents.
The truth is that the rules for school websites can and do change quite regularly. One of the issues Ofsted often has with any school they are reviewing is that their website simply hasn’t been updated.
Here are just a few questions that a good school website audit sets out to answer:
- Does your website do your school justice? In other words, are you selling yourself well enough?
- Do visitors get a clear idea of your values and ethos as soon as they hit your home page?
- Are you combining social media with your website and making it easy for people to communicate with you and stay up to date with the latest news?
- Is all your content easy to find? Are visitors left scratching their heads when it comes to finding important information and documents?
- Does your site demonstrate your inclusivity? How do you support those pupils with additional needs or visitors to your site who may, for example, have a disability such as impaired vision?
Most heads understand the need to post important documents such as school policies and other guidelines. What they tend to be less good at is ensuring these are kept up to date or are accessible.
Ofsted provides information on what you need to include on your site. There are ‘must haves’ such as basic information like contact details and how you deal with applications to the school. You also need to have a copy of your most recent Ofsted report. Then there are web attributes that are highly desirable.
It’s not all about content. You will want your website to be powered by the latest technology. More and more people nowadays access the internet through their smartphones, for example. That means your site needs to be mobile ready and have the right coding in place.
Schools and GDPR
The General Data Protection Regulation came into effect in April of this year and is a tightening up of the legislation when it comes to handling people’s personal information. All organisations and businesses, including schools, need to be aware of the requirements. Part of this is the idea of consent and how it is obtained and managed. This includes understanding whether you need to include measures such as encryption to protect users visiting your site.
While many heads will understand the issues surrounding GDPR and compliance, they are often less informed when it comes to how this effects something like a school website.
Getting a School Website Audit
The good news is that the team at partentapps.com will be able to carry out a comprehensive audit of your website and ensure you fully compliant when it comes to both the needs of Ofsted and the new GDPR.
If you’d like to find out how we can help, contact us today.