AERO Education Finder
May 24, 2009 7:40 AM   Subscribe

AERO Education Finder
An online database of alternative schools and out-of-the-box learning resources by the Alternative Education Resource Organization.

This is one of the recent projects of the Alternative Education Resource Organization (AERO). I've been involved with the NGO for 10 years helping out on and off (mostly off) and it's the #1 charity I give to every six months. They started working on the online version of their database a few years ago then I stepped in to take over the programming last year where the Indian programmers "left it". AERO developed the huge starter-database of alternatives present in the website: over 20 years of research went into gathering 12,000 plus alternatives. If you are considering an alternative school for your child, search this database to find one near you (or anywhere else). Right now it's still free to use (you can get basic information without signup but you do need to register to get complete information). If your favorite alternative school is not listed, you can add it!
posted by peter_meta_kbd (3 comments total)

I just played with this a bit, using the map finder to try and locate a nearby alternate school, and I'm not trying to dump on it, but it really has a lot of advertising on it that seems unnecessary, especially for a non-profit. The front page is choked with too much text that doesn't seem to say anything but promote your web design sites.

Why not make the four navigation options on the front page pretty much the entire front page? And why hide them behind icons?

I'd suggest the front page looks like so:
Map Search
(sentence or two explaining it)

Form Search
(sentence or two explaining it)

About the Service
(sentence or two explaining)

Register form with a bit of text below that you currently show.
Then I'd say remove all the weird keyword links and text off the front page as well as all the google ads because it makes the site look cheap, untrustworthy, and like some sort of linkfarm.
posted by mathowie at 7:46 AM on May 24, 2009

Thanks for the feedback. You're absolutely right. Great suggestions for the front page. Their budget so far allowed us to complete the backend and launch it, but so far almost no work on the beautification and usability. I'll contact them about this.
posted by peter_meta_kbd at 3:34 PM on May 24, 2009

ooo yay!
posted by divabat at 4:18 AM on May 26, 2009

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