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Hurley Public School Taps IBM Search Software to Unleash Learning Resources for Students, Teachers and Parents


Hurley Public School in South Dakota today announced that it has selected IBM (NYSE: IBM) search software to help students, parents and the local community find and access educational information, homework assignments, board meeting minutes, or even conduct library searches from among the school’s 30 Web sites and online resources.

Hurley Public School tapped the free IBM OmniFind Yahoo! Edition enterprise search software to power a new search environment that helps users precisely target and gather information that can be used to improve student education, increase parent involvement, and facilitate community awareness of the school’s activities.

With numerous administration, staff and student Web sites, as well as information in different formats available online -- from student handbooks to school board meeting agendas -- Hurley Public School needed a tool to make it easy to index and search all of this information.

“Advancing our school’s technology is a priority for us as we provide new ways to access learning and keep parents and our community involved in education,” said Shane Voss, superintendent, Hurley Public School. “As a very small school in South Dakota, we try to make every budget dollar count. IBM OmniFind Yahoo! Edition enabled us to get up and running with advanced enterprise and site search, and best of all, it was free.”

The school also delivers a customized environment for Web search based on whether a user is a staff member or a student. This enables the school to provide important links such as to Yahoo!, calendaring or even specialized educational resources appropriate to the user. IBM OmniFind Yahoo! Edition also gives educators a powerful tool to ensure that students easily find the most relevant information for their studies. By using its search statistics, site administrators can see what users are looking for and tune the IBM search software in response. For example, if high school students are studying fusion in their physics class, the IBM search software can be tuned to ensure the most content-rich and relevant sites about this topic are delivered.

Hurley Public School relies heavily on open source software and was previously using an open source indexing system that didn’t deliver the performance and insight required.

“In all we do, we are trying to help people think and find the information they need, as well as provide the best and most accurate results possible,” said Voss. “We want to make every technology tool that we can bring together available to students and staff, whether they are outside the building or inside. Our customized user interface, enabling advanced search and even library search through IBM OmniFind Yahoo! Edition, helps us accomplish this goal.”


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