How can I customize the look of my school Web site? There are four ways in which you can customize your school Web portal.
(1) Choose a color scheme of no more than two colors – for example, red and white, yellow and black, etc. – consistent with your school colors if you have any. If your school doesn’t have official colors and you want to leave the choice up to our graphics department, please state that in your request.
(2) Choose either a “modern” or “classic” template. The modern template has rounded corners and a dark background, as seen here, for example. The classic template has square corners and a white background, as seen here.
(3) Include a photograph of the front of your school with your customization request. This photo will be put on the home page of your school portal and will replace the picture of 52 Chambers Street that is the current placeholder. See here for more information about the specifications of your school photo.
(4) Include your school’s logo with your request. This should be a digital image (jpg, gif, png, etc.) of your school’s logo that our Graphics Department will incorporate into your school banner. If you don't have a school logo, you can just omit this step.
Once you have completed the four steps outlined above, please send an e-mail to email@example.com that includes your color scheme, template choice (modern or classic), a photo of your school and school logo. Please allow 4-6 weeks for processing. You will receive an e-mail letting you know when the customization is complete.How do I get started?To begin adding content and photographs to your school Web site, you need to be designated as a Webmaster by your school’s principal. You will need to receive CMS Training. CMS stands for Content Management Server – it is a tool developed by Microsoft to facilitate Web publishing. You can attend an in-person training class, watch one of our training videos, or teach yourself by going through the CMS Training Manual [add link]. Once you have completed CMS Training, visit the Customer Service Portal to request access to CMS on the authoring server (http://authoring.nycboe.net/). We will also need to receive confirmation from your principal that you are a designated Webmaster.
What is the “authoring server?”The authoring server, located at http://authoring.nycboe.net/ , is a site where all CMS content is added. It is a mirror of the main production site ( http://schools.nyc.gov/ ), and can only be accessed through the administrative network (sometimes called VLAN2). In the future, we hope to make the site accessible via the Internet, but for now you must use a school computer on the administrative network. Once you submit and approve content on the authoring server, it is reflected live on the production site.
What is CMS?CMS stands for Content Management Server – it is a tool developed by Microsoft to make Web publishing easily available without having to learn HTML, CSS or other Web languages.How do I get CMS Training?Please contact your network leader to arrange training. You can access the manual here.
How do I log in to edit my school site?
To log in to edit your school site, first go to the authoring site located at http://authoring.nycboe.net/ – then navigate to your school using the School Search tool. Then click the “Sign In” link at the top of the page, and sign in using your Outlook username and password. Note: you will need to put central\ in front of your username – for example, if your name is Jon Doe and your username is jdoe, you would type central\jdoe in the box for your username.
I have completed training, but still don’t have access–what’s wrong?
Please allow 5-7 business days between the time you complete your CMS Training and the time you are able to log in to the authoring server. If you are still experiencing difficulty after seven business days, please submit a troubleshooting request through our Customer Service Portal [link].What is a channel?A channel is a link in the left navigation panel that takes you to a Web page on your site. For example, starting at the top of the navigation panel on a school homepage, Overview, Photo Album and Policy & Regulations are all channels.
What is a posting summary page?
When you click on a channel link, the page you arrive at is called a posting summary page. A posting summary page contains optional introductory text and a listing of links to postings. For example, using school Q056 as an example, when you click the Overview channel, it takes you to a posting summary page with four links on it (as of 12/07 these include Our Mission, Special Programs, Extracurricular Activities and Our Community).What is a posting?A posting is user created content on a Web page residing in a specific channel. Again using Q056 as an example, when you click the Overview channel, it takes you to a posting summary page with four links on it. Each one of these links takes you to a specific page with content created by an author – these pages are called postings.
What is the difference between a channel, posting summary page and a posting?
A channel is a top-level link on the left navigation. For example, starting at the top of the navigation panel, Overview, Photo Album and Policy & Regulations are all channels. These are under the About Us heading, which is a category heading. A posting summary page provides links to all the postings under a given channel.A posting is an individual page created by an author under a specific channel.How can I add new channels to my site?You cannot add custom channels to your school portal. You can, however, activate channels that are not currently visible on your site. To do this, go into authoring site and switch to edit mode. In edit mode, you will notice that the list of channels in the left navigation is much longer than what you see on the live site. There are nearly 40 channels available for you to use – chances are that any content you need to post will find an appropriate place under one of these channels. Once you post content in any of these channels and approve it, the new channel will appear live in production.
Can I post links to external sites?
Yes–just remember that as Webmaster it is your responsibility to make sure that all outside links on your site are appropriate for children. Keep in mind that you must be aware not only of outside links you post, but of any links accessible from those sites via links or popups. Be selective about the links you post. Links to sites outside the schools.nyc.gov site should be targeted to open in a new window, whereas links within schools.nyc.gov should open in the same [did we get a final answer from legal on this?] window.
How can I find my school Web site?Your school Web portal is easily accessible from the home page of the DOE Web site located at http://schools.nyc.gov/. Simply enter your school name or number in the “School Search” tool (in the Name or Location box), and click go. This will take you to a search results page which should include a link to your school Web portal. Keep in mind that the proper location code for your school consists of a borough letter followed by a number (i.e., Q046 or M030).
Can more than one person at a school edit and contribute content to the school Web site?
Yes. As long as everyone posting content has been approved by the principal, multiple people contributing and/or approving is fine. You can also designate people to be able to submit content, but not approve. You must specify this difference in privileges when submitting your request for CMS authoring access. All users will have approval rights by default unless otherwise noted.Can I make edits to the school Web site from home?At this time, edits to your school portal cannot be made from home. You must be on an administrative computer (sometimes referred to as VLAN2) in order to access the authoring Web site.
Can a parent help with school Web site updates?Parents can provide content or photographs for school Web sites. However, they cannot actually post material on the site. Only DOE employees can receive access to school sites.
What are the requirements for the photograph of the school that appears on the homepage of my school Web site?The photo must be of the front of the school building. Unless you have release forms to use student(s) pictures, this picture should not contain any students, only the building itself.
Can I post pictures of students on our school portal?You must have a release form signed and filed for each student photo you wish to post.
Where can I get a release form to use photos of students on the Web site?You can obtain media release forms in nine different languages from the Media Relations Office Web page.
How can I correct information on my school Web site (such as names or phone numbers) that is inaccurate?Details about your school can be updated on the authoring Web site when you are in edit mode. Just click the “Update” button next to the field you want to update, and you will be taken to the appropriate form to update that field.
I submitted materials to customize my school already, but my site has not yet been customized. What can I do?Please allow 4-6 weeks for your school customizations (i.e., color scheme, logo, template choice and school photo) are reflected on your Web site. From time to time customizations may take a little bit longer if we are backlogged with requests. If you are experiencing long delays, you can contact the Web Management Services team through the Customer Support Portal.