Accessibility Consulting for Public and Private Schools
Between 2017 and 2018, there was a 177% increase in website accessibility lawsuits. Many educational institutions, including public school districts and individual schools (both public and private), are among the entities most commonly receiving accessibility complaints and being included in web accessibility lawsuits. As schools have transitioned to distance learning or hybrid educational models to protect against COVID-19, the U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights has released guidelines for public schools that emphasize the importance of accessible technology for students with disabilities.
Choosing the right content management system in which to build your school’s or district’s website(s) is a complex decision as you need to weigh a variety of features with costs. It’s important that schools regard accessibility as a key feature of their website and not an afterthought, but it’s not uncommon for districts to have websites built in older platforms prior to the 2018 refresh of the federal statute governing information and communication technology software, Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which adopted Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) as the legal standard for website accessibility for any federally funded organizations or programs.
If you’re concerned that your current website is using outdated standards and is not fully accessible, Equalize Digital is here to help. We’ll work to protect your school or district from ADA-related lawsuits by ensuring that your website, software, and digital content are accessible to people of all abilities and can train your staff to maintain accessibility post remediation.
- Ensure that customers can access and navigate your school’s or district’s website and apps.
- Maintain compliance with WCAG 2.1, ADA, and Section 508 accessibility guidelines and laws.
- Reach all students and families, especially those at risk of being left behind.
- Understand how people with disabilities use the internet.
Make Your Website Accessible
Comprehensive audits and user testing to determine your compliance gaps. We’ll help you identify areas that need improvement – whether in code or content.
Equalize Digital is your partner to resolve all accessibility errors and ensure your website meets WCAG 2.1, Section 508, and ADA standards.
From providing training for your team to ongoing website assessments, we’ll verify your website stays compliant with current accessibility laws and standards.
Web Accessibility Services That Fit K-12 Schools’ Needs
Whether you need urgent accessibility remediation or are planning a new website or application for your school or district and want to ensure it is accessible to people of all abilities, our team of expert consultants and accessibility-focused developers are here to help.
We understand the unique complexities that are included in working on government-funded projects and look forward to helping you achieve your website accessibility goals.
Learn How to Make Your School’s Website Accessible
Equalize Digital is more than an accessibility audit and remediation company. We build training into our audit, remediation, and new website development processes to help ensure that your website stays accessible after its remediation or launch. Our goal is not just to be your remediators, but to be your teachers so that by the end of our engagement you’ll have a solid understanding of website accessibility basics. We want you to be empowered to enter new content on your website or create new designs in an accessible manner.
If you would like to learn more about website accessibility, please inquire about our training services or visit these helpful resources for higher education website accessibility.
Office of Civil Rights Webinar on Website Accessibility & Online Learning
This short video provides an excellent overview of the laws related to website accessibility that are relevant to public schools and how they apply during times of online learning.
Additional Resources for Learning More About Accessibility Requirements
Ready to get started?
Whether you’re concerned about accessibility compliance or you want to completely overhaul your school’s or district’s web presence, our team is ready to help you ensure your website is usable by people of all abilities.
To get started or learn more about how we work, call us at (512) 942-5858 or visit our contact page to request more information from our sales team.
K-12 Website Accessibility FAQs
In our experience, unless you are already extensively focusing on website accessibility, there are likely accessibility issues present on your current website that need to be fixed. Nearly all websites and applications have accessibility problems because, unfortunately, we have not yet reached a point where all designers and developers make accessibility a priority.
If you’re not sure that our services are right for you, we recommend getting one of our free risk assessments. These assessments tell you:
- If there are any errors present on your website.
- How we can help and the fastest path to remediation.
You can request a risk assessment at no charge on our accessibility audits page.
If you request a risk assessment, you’ll be able to schedule a meeting to go over your assessment at a time that makes sense for you. Typically we have your risk assessment complete and are available to meet to discuss it within 24 hours.
Our initial accessibility audits generally take 5 business days from the date you sign up and pay your deposit.
Remediation timelines are unique for every client depending upon several items, including the number of problems present on the site and the budget available for fixes. Our goal is to remediate all issues as quickly as possible, and some clients choose to have an intense remediation phase over several weeks following the audit. Other clients may elect to enter a remediation plan that stretches over many months due to the number of problems that need to be addressed, the number of pages requiring manual review, and their budget.
Yes. Our team has developed accessible websites and web applications and has provided accessibility consulting for both charter schools and public schools. Additionally, we have higher education website accessibility experience and have provided accessibility services to large public universities, government agencies, and federally funded programs.
Our COO, Chris Hinds, previously worked in K-12 dining, running school meal programs in districts in Wyoming and Colorado. Chris has worked in rural high-FRL school districts and currently serves on his local school board. This background brings a unique understanding about how public school districts run, not commonly found at web consulting firms.
As an agency, we are familiar with the intricacies of working on a website that is paid for by state or federal dollars and that there may be additional contractual items that need to be included in the terms of service or certain milestones that need to be met in order for payment to be released.
Yes, we do occasionally submit responses to RFPs for new website projects depending upon the scope of the project and timeline. If your department or institution has an RFP that you would like us to review and respond to, please email it to sales [at] equalizedigital.com. Please note, we do have a strong preference toward responding to RFPs that list a budget.
Yes. If you have your own in-house developers but need a trained accessibility expert to assist with auditing and providing support as your development team remediates issues, we can help.
For companies with an internal development team, we can craft custom remediation and monitoring support plans which includes access to our scanning dashboard and reports, as well as time for training and support as your developers work through issues. We can also coordinate user testing sessions with our blind and visually impaired testers. Please contact us for additional information.
Yes, in addition to our accessibility auditing and remediation services, we also offer accessible website design and development services for k-12 schools and school districts, including hosting and supporting websites post launch as desired by the school or district.