I am a teacher in a Secondary School and I have been set the task of designing a new up to date school website. As a lot of school website are very unimpressive I want to make sure ours looks professional and modern.
Unfortuantely my web dev. skills are certainly not modern. I have experience of creating simple websites using DreamWeaver. I have got 2 days per week until Christmas to get a new website created.
Could someone give me advice on what software I should be looking at creating this in. As my skills are limited maybe with some templates and good code libraries I can call on rather than developing everything from scratch.
I can get educational discounts on things like the Adobe suites so software cost is not too much of an issue. Also any advice on what software to use so that non-technical staff can be tasked with updating news feeds etc?
If all you know is some basic Dreamweaver, you may struggle to develop a professional, comprehensive website for your school. May I ask what you teach and why you have been chosen for the job? With respect, it sounds as if you're not a web developer, so why have the school not gone for a web development company and/or professional team/individual?
What software you use to create the website depends on what the website is going to do. Anyway, I'd recommend using the Joomla! content management system for your website over any other CMS available, provided you're only going to need things like school information displayed, information about teachers/students/timetables/etc. Joomla! is easy-to-use, and can be learnt by the non-technical staff in a week or two with a little practice.
DREAMWEAVER is an excellent tool for creating/editing web sites. The best way to use Dreamweaver is in Split-screen mode, which gives you the Code screen on left and Display on right. Don't be one of those goofers who don't want to touch HTML/CSS code so make use the code screen to write your code.
Dreamweaver gives you lots of helpful tidbits. Once you develop a working layout for your pages, you can create your own template with editable sections for content that varies from page-to-page. Getting stuck in another person's template is bad news.