The New GFS Website

by Owen Cheung

As many of you know, the GFS website was updated Wednesday, October 12. Members of the GFS community felt that the old website was, for lack of better words, “old”. It was the same design as it had been for many years and the product used lacked the power to make the site better. Last year, an anonymous donation was given towards the new website, which sparked the start of it.

The website was created in different phases, starting with picking the vendor to build the website. After searching for a group, the faculty chose Silverpoint, a company from Baltimore. The company came to our campus and interviewed students to get a feel for the community. Many students met at meetings and discussed the plans. I participated in some of them, along with other students in the Middle School. We talked about different features of the website, how we felt about the old one and how we reacted to it. Many of us felt that the website would be one’s first impression of the school, and of course we want a good first impression. Silverpoint took our views into account so they could create a good design.

Next the design was created and content from the old website was moved over. The website team has worked since the contract was signed in January, 2011 until the website was launched.

One of the most significant features include the Virtual Tour, which is a page of the website in which Bob Reinhardt (MS Art) created a beautiful map of the GFS campus. Each location of the campus has a special message saying something about it and it truly connects the website to the community.

My personal thoughts of the new website are about how the design captures the school. First off, it demonstrates the SPICES (the Quaker testimonies, simplicity, peace, integrity, community, equality, and stewardship). The site is simple, yet beautiful. It has great pictures of people in the community and it covers everything the school is about. I also believe that it does a good job of feeling alive. A recent Alum told Sarah Detwiler that the new site makes her feel like she is still a part of the community, even though she no longer goes to the school. The site gives a great, bold impact that I really like.

The website was a collaboration of the “Website Committee” (including Sarah Detwiler, Rhonda Levy, Dana Griffin, and Steve Kushner), the Silverpoint crew, and many other faculty members. I am sure I am not the only one thanking and congratulation these people for their hard work and dedication. And a very special thanks to Rhonda and Sarah.

Overall, the website is a great success. Everyone I have talked to has enjoyed the change. It represent the school very well and leaves a great impression.

Check out the New GFS Website now!