Superintendent Steve Dackin told the Reynoldsburg Board of Education Nov. 16 he wants to improve communications with the community through a redesigned district website.

Superintendent Steve Dackin told the Reynoldsburg Board of Education Nov. 16 he wants to improve communications with the community through a redesigned district website.

"We want to put together a plan that ensures that we're enable to engage our parents in two-way communication that shares the things that we do and also provides a feedback loop to the district so we can use that data to improve our organization," Dackin said.

He said it's a good time to examine the communication plan because by the time current renovations and construction of two new schools are completed, the district will include 12 buildings.

"We've almost doubled our building capacity in the school district and in response to that need, we are developing a comprehensive communications plan," Dackin said.

District spokesperson Tricia Moore said the plan is being designed after an audit of communications was conducted throughout the district.

"The communication plan is in the design phase now, but it's to develop some consistencies in communication districtwide," Moore said.

She said goals include increasing the community's understanding of Reynoldsburg schools' value, successes and goals; increasing understanding by the board, staff and administration about the community's perceptions of the district; and how to overcome any obstacles.

Additional goals are to provide an avenue for continuing two-way communication between the school district and the community, and to enhance the overall image of Reynoldsburg schools.

"One of the most visible things will be the design of a logo and a new slogan," Moore said. "These are pieces sometimes we call them branding, marketing pieces that really is what gives us a professional and unified look."

Moore said this "branding" will be seen on a redesign of the district's website, which is scheduled to launch at the first of the year. In addition to its changed look, she said the site will offer tools that schools can use to communicate with parents and other tools parents can use to decide how they want to receive information.

"With the new website, parents will be able to sign up for weekly newsletters and get their news where they can follow us on a social networking site," she said. "They can choose how it gets to them, so if they want to receive it all at once in a regular, one-hit email or if they want to come see it when they are ready to or when they're doing their online socializing, there will be more than one avenue.

"We talk a lot about doing more with less and this is another one of those cases where we're asking our district to be better and more efficient at the same time, where you don't have more resources to put into the delivery of communications." she said.

Dackin said his hopes are that the redesigned website will improve overall communication between buildings and parents.

"To me, it came as a result as we started getting bigger and we were struggling with even communication between buildings," he said. "Also, part of it is we're in a different era. When we were small, communication could be much more personalized to a particular building and it was a give-and-take and now, you've got social networking out there.

"Parents and community members are expecting different modalities of communication and we have never really embraced those things before," Dackin said.

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