From a charter school that’s proud to be UGLY, to an international boarding school set for adventure, we're looking at the web design, content, and user experience of the schools and districts worldwide that have recently launched beautiful, new websites with Finalsite.
There’s a lot to explore — check out the latest round-up from February 2023!
Piedmont Unified School District
District news, updates, and events complement this lovely California district’s homepage. It’s always refreshing to see a district’s commitment to keeping the site fresh with the latest news and updates front and center.
And it's clear Piedmont is focused on the future — a by-the-numbers section, enrollment information, and links to its strategic plan are included in a grid showcasing its mission and vision — a great way to communicate the plans for the district to current and prospective families and its community
Ready for an adventure? Aiglon is a private international boarding school in Switzerland that offers a distinctive education in a stunning alpine setting. A truly unique design feels like you're reading a map and charting a course of discovery. Each panel is like a mini-adventure, providing a new experience with every click. Its homepage offers so much — check out its social media integration and featured alumni profiles, too!
Father Ryan High School
Father Ryan is a great example of applying your website's style guide throughout your site. That consistency and branding are seen on each page, and the interior pages and top-level landing pages incorporate some really wonderful design enhancements. Nicely done!
St Mark's School
Experiential learning, community, leadership, and service — numerous panels on the homepage answer the question, “Why St. Mark’s?” There’s a great use of secondary colors across the site, too. Pops of green, orange, and light blue throughout the buttons, icons, and the calendar complement St. Mark’s branding well. Take a look at some of its enhancements, which include Fast Facts, image callouts on the arts page, and its custom directory.
Cardinal Gibbons High Schools
The left-sided navigation is a nice touch to this gorgeous site — it feels like you’re comfortably anchored to the page as you scroll through its homepage, which is focused on its program, community, and faith. The last panel is an entire section prompting users to take the next step — make a gift or inquire and apply with Finalsite’s admissions and enrollment software.
More highlights of this site include a custom directory that introduces its board members and school leadership and images that are used as quicklinks, which make browsing its academic programs easy. Don’t forget to check out its engaging timeline chronicling the school’s history since its founding in the early 1900s.
Jesuit High School Tampa
There’s a lot to explore on Jesuit High School’s homepage — without having to scroll much. Panels toward the top of the page cover its recent campus events, an event calendar promotes what’s next, and a social media integration pulls in content from its social channels. It’s a great strategy to keep a homepage looking fresh — its site content will be updated with the latest happenings as the school year progresses.
Sacred Heart Academy - Bryn Mawr
Sacred Heart Academy Bryn Mawr stands out among the 150+ schools in 41 countries that make up the International Sacred Heart Schools. The homepage provides testimonials from members of its community and panels that branch off into its main divisions — a closer look through its navigation really explores everything the school has to offer — faith, intellect, drive, community, and growth. There’s enough distinction to provide its own identity, but enough branding to make it recognizable as part of the Sacred Heart network.
New Paradigm for Education
NPFE delivers a solid homepage experience with a welcome and overview of its six schools in Detroit. The “At a Glance” section with fast facts, a grid panel to learn more, and testimonials all provide a lot of potential for this site — can’t wait to see what the future brings!
San Antonio Academy of Texas
This is a site to see! This all-boys private school empowers its students to be the best they can be, and that experience is captured perfectly. The design is certainly a unique experience — cut-outs of young men slide in and are placed next to the school’s virtues; panels describing “how” the school delivers on its mission, and impressive fast facts all elevate San Antonio Academy’s new site. A timeline going back to the 1800s highlights key moments from the school’s history, right on the homepage. Definitely worth a closer look!
KIS International School
Placed just under KIS’ news and events panels, a grid of images acts as a launching point for KIS’ programs. This international school strategically delivers a simple, but effective user experience that’s well-replicated on a smartphone. Note the language chosen as headers for main navigation — explore, join, learn, experience, serve, and connect — not only do they describe, but they double as calls to action. Nicely done!
Clayton Valley Charter High School
Clayton Valley breaks the mold for charter school websites. It’s a site full of high-energy and dynamic design work. Custom image buttons, a campus map, infographics, and some thrilling videos make this site a knock-out. Numbered sections divide the school’s shared vision, differentiators, and the latest campus highlights. Take a look and find out why they’re so proud to be UGLY.
Oslo International School
OIS offers an internationally recognized curriculum in a school culture that values cooperation and global awareness, all of which are supported by the collective “we” and “our” used in the site’s copy. The pops of orange are a nice complement to the warm, wavy blues throughout Oslo’s design. A nod to Norway’s Northern Lights is subtly introduced into the design’s rounded edges and gradients in its calls-to-action buttons.
La Salle College High School
La Salle’s new site leans into the theme of the educational journey; that all students are on a path to discover themselves. Constituent profiles appear, teasing out the experience of students and faculty, asking users to explore their path, while a section calls out the various roads that “...lead to distinction.” It’s all wrapped up with a community section entitled “grounded in possibility,” which suggests that no matter where your path takes you, the La Salle community will always be home.
Kingsway College School
Kingsway’s new site plays off the theme of “expansion” — that a young mind is always growing. As the homepage says,”boundaries disappear and horizons widen,” when students arrive, and its site captures that notion perfectly. Bursts of color and star-like graphics cover the latest campus news and the KCS experience, making this site a joy to explore.
Virginia Beach City Public Schools
The big images in the streamlined navigation make browsing the district site a breeze, and
by incorporating the district’s themes, colors, and branding, it’s an excellent example of how to bring over branding onto individual school sites, while still allowing each school its individual identity and feel.
St. John's Episcopal Parish Day School
Look closely and you’ll see a rendering of St. John’s future campus take the spotlight of this microsite’s header. The current campus and planned vision for St. John’s is outlined well on this microsite — a smart option to collect testimonials, communications, and host campaign updates to support major campaigns like this one.
Congratulations to all the schools that launched their theme designs this month — we’re excited to see what these schools will accomplish!
- Teton County School District 1
- Blairstown Elementary School
- Boardman Local Schools
- Vandalia-Butler City School District
- Northridge Local Schools
- Troup County Schools
- Belgrade School District 44
- Duluth Independent School District 709
- Jackson County Public Schools
- Pleasanton Unified School District
- QAIS: Quebec Association of Independent Schools
- Oklahoma Schools Advisory Council
- Bellevue City School District
- Seaside Neighborhood School
- State Support Team Region 16
- Spencer County Public Schools
- Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah District
- Aurora City School District
- The Phelps School
- Orondo School District 13
- Network International School
- Spencer County Public Schools
- Eastwood Local
- West Noble School Corporation
- Boyd County School District
- Durant School District I-72
- Christian School Association of Greater Harrisburg
- Dallas Lutheran School
- George Stevens Academy
- Hebron Schools
- Madison County School District
- Northern Berkshire Vocational Regional School District
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Connor has spent the last decade within the field of marketing and communications, working with independent schools and colleges throughout New England. As Finalsite’s Senior Content Marketing Manager, Connor plans and executes marketing strategies and digital content across the web. A former photojournalist, he has a passion for digital media, storytelling, coffee, and creating content that connects.