Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools announced today it has launched a new Web site. The last major update was in 2002. CMS will utilize more multi-media functions such as videos, podcasting and blogs and hopes the new Web site will be more user friendly and faster.

The CMS press release:

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools has launched a new Web site design, with a focus on the individual surfing habits of the site visitor.

The CMS Communications department conducted months of research into how the former site was being used and which audiences were using it. The result is a Web site, launched to the public over the weekend, structured to be more user-friendly, by dividing the content into the following categories:

•       Parents
•       Newcomers
•       Schools
•       Volunteers and Partners
•       Jobs
•       Media

The new user-specific version of the CMS Web site, which contains thousands of pages of subject matter, is now improved with a sleek design and enhanced search capabilities, providing faster and easier navigation at the click of a mouse.

“This new site makes it easier for families and members of the community to find the information that is important to them,” said LaTarzja Henry, executive director of communications.

The CMS Web site is a key communication tool of the school district, providing the public with information on an array of topics. Distributing that information to visitors locally, nationally or anywhere around the world, in a timely matter, has been addressed with a function of the new Web site that allows authorized CMS staff members the ability to quickly update content on their specific page. A new content-expiration function assures information being viewed on the site is current.

Another improved function of the site allows for better inclusion of multi-media sources, such as video and audio clips, podcasting and blogging.

The CMS Information Technology department did extensive research to find the best content-management system to fit the district’s needs. The team coordinated with several dozen departments to get content updated and moved to the new site. They also trained hundreds of liaisons in those departments to update their Web site content. The CMS Web site design was last updated in July 2002.