The Irvine Public Schools Foundation (IPSF) is responsible for managing the after school program for all 26 schools in the district. Using their website, volunteers at each school enter class schedules, enroll children in the classes and assign teachers to these classes.
IPSF gave us a call one August day. Their new school year was starting in 36 days and their original web developer had sent them an ultimatum that they will be required to pay $10,000.00 per month for access to the web site their entire business ran on. They had 30 days to comply or their service would be shut off (6 days before the start of the enrollment period).
This is when they called Universal Net...
First, we examined their contract and sure enough they did not own the copyright to their own web site.
Did you know that if you have a web site built or art created or text written. Unless the copyright is assigned to you in the agreement, you do not own it. It doesn't matter how much you paid, unless rights are assigned, the content remains the property of the author.
So back to the IPSF web site...
There was a lot of functionality to this web site. A lot of information needed to be gathered and because we're dealing with children, there is a lot of sensitive information that needed to be protected. Then there is the fact that the site had to be built and running in about 32 days (before the enrollment start date).
We designed and built a complete new site on Microsoft technology using Microsoft SQL server and created a custom website from scratch with all the original functionality in 31 days. They were able to begin enrollment on time and while they began enrollment, we continued to add new functionality to the site that supported them in providing even better service like the ability for executive administrators to print .pdf reports on the status of the payments, enrollment and other status. Even the ability for executive administrators to emulate a school level administrator to help out with enrollment overflow.
As time has gone on we allow parents to pay for courses online rather than send a check to school with their child. Parents can manage their children's profile. When a student graduates, the student is taken out of the active system but his/her history status remains. Then we added the ability to run more than one program. Summer school or band camp for example.
So in the end, there are two web sites. The one IPSF uses to run their organization with full rights and a nominal hosting fee and another that isn't being used at all!