On Oct. 16, Education Secretary Rod Paige announced that the U.S. Department of Education (ED) web site has been redesigned to improve its organization and function for all users and to give users interested in customizing the web site the option to personalize it. The new site includes several improvements and adds new features. Information has been reorganized and can be reached through multiple paths, including these five categories: grants and contracts, financial aid for students, education resources, research and statistics, and policy. Customized pages have been created for teachers, principals, parents and families, students, higher-education institutions, grantees, and technical assistance providers. Visitors may personalize the site to see the latest information about their favorite topics. They can also sign up for weekly updates announcing new additions to the site. An improved search function will produce results that are more relevant and reliable. The redesigned site also offers an alphabetical index of the best starting points for research on the site and includes a site map to provide a bird’s-eye view. The new site will continue to display news regarding department activities, including press releases, speeches, reports and studies, research syntheses, and connections to the ED Pubs online ordering system. The site also continues to publish the “Guide to ED Programs,” which describes department programs and offers background and contact information for potential participants. The department’s technology page (www.ed.gov/Technology) remains as well; our only complaint is that it no longer can be accessed directly from the site’s home page.
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