The Teaching Channel (TCH) is a thriving online community where teachers can watch, share, and learn diverse techniques to help every student grow. Its website began as a homegrown platform for sharing inspiring teaching practices – but with a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, it quickly grew into a knowledge hub hosting more than 4,000 videos, along with conversations and private uploads between millions of active users.
Always looking to improve, the Teaching Channel saw areas where its current website could perform better – due to its overwhelming popularity, its website had grown quickly, and had expanded beyond its ability to effectively support its user and content base. Additionally, the design could benefit from a refresh, and tweaks to the architecture and publishing backend would make it more intuitive and easier to use.
Like many organizations, TCH faced challenges that were borne out of its success. Its current website was having difficulty functioning at the enterprise level the organization required, and as a result, performance was struggling. Additionally, making updates and site changes was slower and more cumbersome than necessary. The site needed an overhaul – and it needed all of its 11 million assets moved to their new home within four months, in time for the new school season.
TCH tapped Sourcetop to lead its project. Sourcetop built the new site in Drupal and transitioned TCH to Acquia's cloud solution, giving them the support and stability they needed. Sourcetop upgraded the site’s design, integrated JWPlayer for videos, and developed a much more user-friendly publishing backend, including an intuitive page builder tool using Drupal’s Panelizer and multi-tenancy for members who belong to two or more schools or districts.
With the new architecture in place, Sourcetop planned and executed the migration of more than 11 million assets and users onto more cost-effective storage. TCH’s old website stayed up in read-only mode during this migration – effectively experiencing zero downtime – and the new website was up and running the next day.
Launched just four months after the initial kickoff meeting, the Teaching Channel’s new site has vastly improved its users’ experience, and helped launch exciting new partnerships with other educational companies. The new website is fully responsive, SEO-friendly, and was delivered on time and under budget.