Tag: School District
Phoenixville Area School District Hosts Groundbreaking Ceremony for its new Elementary School in East Pikeland Township
On Friday, December 8th, Phoenixville Area School District hosted its commemorative groundbreaking ceremony to kick off the construction phase of their new elementary school located on Hares Hill Road in East Pikeland Township, PA. The 98,500 SF facility will house 700 students from grades 2 through 6, alleviating overcrowding at the middle school by moving 6th grade students to the new building. This will be the first elementary school in East Pikeland since the previous school’s closing, and the Township residents are thrilled to welcome a new school to their community.
The school’s layout takes advantage of the existing terrain, creating a balanced, multilevel facility. Upon entering the school, the interior boasts an impressive Learning Stair, where students can socialize and participate in a collaborative learning environment. The Learning Stair leads to a specialized STEAM area on the second floor where the Art room, STEM room, and Media Center are located. One of the building’s key design features is an enclosed courtyard, providing a secure indoor-outdoor space for students to learn and play. The entire configuration of the facility promotes collaboration and a forward-looking educational experience.
SG understands the future of education involves new teaching methods emphasizing the importance of sustainability. With this in mind, solar panels will be installed on all south-facing and flat roofs, and a panel will be located in the courtyard for students to observe the benefits of this energy source. Additionally, through a rainwater collection system, students discover the benefits of collecting and reusing water for their courtyard gardens.
The community showed tremendous support at the groundbreaking ceremony, including students, parents, faculty, and staff, who echoed the excitement shown throughout the planning and design process. This new elementary school will be a landmark for Phoenixville Area School District, and SG is proud to have collaborated with the District on this achievement. The school is projected to open in the Fall of 2025.
To see more of our K-12 projects, click here.
Governor Mifflin School District Celebrates New Athletic Community Center Opening
On Saturday, December 2, Governor Mifflin School District hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony to unveil their new Governor Mifflin Athletic Community Center (GMACC). Designed by SCHRADERGROUP (SG), the 68,000 SF GMACC features state-of-the-art athletic spaces, middle and high school classrooms, and an abundance of amenities. Located in the heart of the existing secondary school campus, the GMACC is more than a sports arena; it is part of a comprehensive plan to address space needs at the middle and high school by converting former physical education spaces to next-generation learning environments.
This community facility will not only serve the Governor Mifflin students and staff, but will be available for community use. At the core of the facility is the main competition gymnasium complete with multi-level bleachers seating up to 2,000 people. The publicly accessible fitness room at the main floor level features gym equipment for people of all ages and skill levels. To support physical education and athletics, locker rooms with specialized equipment-drying amenities and team rooms have direct access to the adjacent sports fields. On the upper level, a track borders the perimeter of the main gymnasium, and this floor also includes the wrestling room, multipurpose room, and a classroom for health education. The new center boasts a state-of-the-art sports medicine training room with taping tables and ice baths for injury treatment. There is also a fully stocked concession stand for sporting events.
The GMACC was conceived by the community, for the community. SG facilitated a community workshop process that put vision into motion for not only the GMACC, but for the future of Governor Mifflin School District. This facility serves as a commitment to community engagement, health, and wellness. More than just a sports facility, it is an anchor for the community and a place where the School District’s services seamlessly integrate with public life. The residents and students now have a new facility to connect, participate in sports and group activities, and achieve personal fitness goals. We at SG are very pleased to have been part of this process and to see this vision materialize for the district.
To see more SG athletic projects, click here.
Construction Advances for Great Valley School District’s New 5/6 Center
Great Valley School District is in the construction phase of its upcoming 5/6 Center. The new facility accommodates the district’s growing enrollment and provides unique spaces for students in this transitional age group to receive an education tailored to their needs. Recent construction progress on the exterior includes stone veneer finishing at the main entrance, wall and tile installation, metal roofing, and aluminum curtain wall and glazing installation.
Located on the same site as KD Markley Elementary School, the 5/6 Center creates a cohesive campus with improved circulation, dedicated bus drop-offs, and new playfields. The parent drop-off loop connects and serves both schools to alleviate congestion.
On the interior, classrooms, hallways, and learning stairs are emerging amidst the building’s evolving infrastructure. STEM spaces occupy what was the original 1939 schoolhouse, with the historic façade opening to the new library and media center. A set of Learning Stairs integrates the library, media center, Maker Lab, and flexible presentation space for fluid efficiency in conducting and presenting research. An atrium-style dining commons, with a second set of Learning Stairs, provides flexibility for dining and stage performances.
Those involved in the project, including the students and faculty, eagerly anticipate the new facility’s opening in the Fall of 2024. Construction momentum displays tangible success and instills excitement for the future.
To see more of our K-12 projects, click here.
Hazleton School District Hosts Three Celebratory Ribbon-Cutting Ceremonies to Honor New Construction Projects
Hazleton Area School District experienced tremendous growth, and over the past few weeks, unveiled its three latest projects: the Hazleton Area Academy, the Cyber Academy, and the Arts and Humanities Academy. These new academies not only address capacity issues, but add to the quality of education for students throughout the District. Each new facility had ribbon-cutting ceremonies commemorating these significant milestones, and SCHRADERGROUP (SG) is honored to have worked alongside the dedicated people who help contribute to student success.
The first ribbon-cutting celebrated the opening of the Hazleton Area Academy, the old site of the Hazle Township Early Learning Center, and it currently offers early intervention and pre-K enrollment, plus VITAL House independent living and lifestyle training for young adults with disabilities. Totaling 40,000 SF of renovation, this center utilizes a repurposed portion of the school to serve young students. SG worked alongside the District in crafting a design that provides essential tools and spaces for developing minds, student growth, and engagement. The Hazleton Area Academy features transitional spaces for early learners, adaptable café spaces to introduce the students to elementary-level dining, and a flexible indoor recreation area. VITAL House includes a classroom area and fully accessible simulated apartment living.
As for the Cyber Academy, the ribbon-cutting ceremony recognized its K-12 project opening. The Cyber Academy is a unique 8,200 SF facility in the Laurel Mall, catering to the demand for online learning. SG utilized state-of-the-art technology within the 22 interactive teaching offices. The Cyber Academy emphasizes the versatility and accessibility of virtual learning and activities. It boasts a student conference and testing area, a 1,200 SF EA Sports Arena, a student-run retail store, and a secure reception area with flexible meeting spaces. Students can now participate in virtual classes and clubs and can even earn a Hazleton Area School District diploma.
State representatives, news outlets, and the community attended the third ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Arts and Humanities Academy. The total area measures over 44,000 SF and is located in the CANO Industrial Business Park. Featuring a theater, dance studio, and vocal studio, the academy caters to students in grades 9-12 who want to further their artistic passions. SG designed the facility to accommodate performing arts, news, video, and other communications outlets.
Hazleton Area School District is a long-standing client of SG, and we are happy to contribute to bright futures for the next generation of students, faculty, and staff throughout the District.
West View Elementary School Completes Construction Topping-Off Milestone of New Addition
The construction team at North Hills School District’s West View Elementary recently installed the final steel beam, advancing the progress of its new addition. The installation of the final beam represents the hard work and dedication all the teams have put forward, furthering the construction process. Built in 1925, West View originally served as the first junior high school in the nation, now housing upwards of four hundred students as an elementary school.
The school’s new addition, designed by SCHRADERGROUP (SG), will be 113,000 SF and feature administrative, nursing, and classroom spaces on the first floor, with additional classrooms and an expanded library equipped with a STEAM classroom on the second floor. This added space will provide ample room for students to grow and succeed in their education.
Team members and school administrators signed the steel beams with pride and well wishes for the future of the students and the school. The addition’s projected finish date is January 2024, while additional renovations are set to coincide with West View’s centennial anniversary in 2025.
West View’s topping-off ceremony represents tangible progress toward the future of learning. SG proudly worked with the school district and the leadership of the elementary school on this new addition. We are honored to create a practical and essential space where students can further their knowledge and achieve their academic goals. SG considered the best technology, sustainable features, and updates to streamline the way students move, collaborate, and learn within the space.
To learn more about our K-12 projects, click here.
Photos c/o North Hills School District – Facebook
SCHRADERGROUP Facilitates North Penn High School’s Additions and Renovation Planning Workshop
The North Penn School District (NPSD) held the first of three Community Workshops on July 17, 2023, for the proposed renovations and additions to the North Penn High School. SCHRADERGROUP facilitated the Workshop attended by over 50 individuals including Board members, District administration, staff, parents, students, community members, and Township officials.
Involving the key stakeholders is an integral part of SG’s collaborative design process. What is unique to this particular planning workshop is it is an important step in developing a design for the referendum for the taxpayers of NPSD to approve electoral debt for the project in January 2024.
The design process to date has included virtual and actual building tours of local, regional and national “Next Generation” schools. David Schrader began the Workshop with an overview of the building tours and program of the spaces. Building blocks representing each of the spaces were provided to each of the 6 teams to begin the conversation of room adjacencies and relationships of the building to the site. This is the first step to begin developing concepts that will continue to be refined over the next several months.
SG’s mission is to design educational facilities that precisely meet clients’ needs, with a strong emphasis on collaborative decision-making involving key stakeholders. Their client-driven approach begins with a thorough assessment of existing conditions and relies on a consensus-based planning process, fostering creative and effective solutions. They prioritize inclusive workshops to ensure input and information sharing from all parties, resulting in designs that exceed user expectations.
Please click the photo above to see the entire process of the workshop, with full commentary and transcripts.
“The main takeaway of this workshop was to get some big picture ideas that we can take away and turn into a facility concept to move towards (North Penn High School’s) referendum concept.” – David Schrader
To see more K-12 projects done by SCHRADERGROUP, please visit our website here.
SCHRADERGROUP: Enhancing Your Community with Next Generation Learning Environments
WE BELIEVE ACADEMIC DESIGN TRULY IS THE DESIGN FOR THE FUTURE
Over 19 years as a firm, SCHRADERGROUP (SG) completed over 200 projects in design for education and devoted the majority of its practice to learning environments. We are focused on creating learning environments specific to your vision for developing the leaders and thinkers for tomorrow.
Our Partners and Associates have over three decades of experience in academic facility design and are involved with school associations locally, nationally, and internationally (PASBO, DVASBO, NSBA, PSBA, A4LE, and others.) With this experience, the SG leadership continues to be committed to academic design to ensure the best experience for you.
SG employs 40+ full-time professional staff and is a full-service architecture firm offering planning and design services in the areas of architecture, structural engineering, planning, interior design, and construction administration. SG has the capacity to design over $400 million in construction projects per year.
The SG team works diligently to deliver projects in the most timely and cost effective manner and offers solutions that will satisfy programming standards of facilities nationally. With this effort, the stage is set for a design that will be entirely appropriate to its setting while satisfying the ergonomic needs of the using agencies.
Check out our a few of our K-12 Projects here.
Downloads of our K-12 flyer, brochure, and SOQ are available here.
And downloads of our tour book and brochure on our star project, Upper Merion Area High School, are available here.
Upper Merion Area School District’s Upper Merion Area High School Recognized as an Outstanding Project in American School & University’s Fall 2022 Architectural Portfolio
SCHRADERGROUP (SG) is proud to announce that our recently completed project, Upper Merion Area School District’s new Upper Merion Area High School, has received an Outstanding Project Award from American School & University for its Fall 2022 Architectural Portfolio.
SG is excited to have another project featured in this prestigious publication. We have thoroughly enjoyed working with Upper Merion Area School District (UMASD) and are honored to have this excellent school featured in this issue.
American School and University (AS&U) is a magazine dedicated to the planning, design, construction, retrofit, operations, maintenance, and management of education facilities. It is intended to showcase the latest trends, technologies, and strategies driving educational facilities and the market.
AS&U honors educational design projects each year through multiple design competitions. One of these competitions is the Architectural Portfolio, the premier showcase celebrating the best in education design.
After a complete community-engaged master planning process and subsequent successful new elementary school projects, Upper Merion Area School District (UMASD) began the process of creating a flagship facility to house the upper secondary programs for the District. A thorough process was utilized, including multiple user meetings and tours of state-of-the-art facilities throughout the United States.
The intent behind the facility is to provide career and higher education level spaces for the students of UMASD to engage in the 21st-century learning activities of “research, develop, and present!” Multiple hi-tech industry workspaces as well as contemporary higher education spaces were studied in the process of the development of this unique facility.
The 345,000 SF facility is connected to the existing middle school through the athletic and performing arts facilities to provide a full secondary campus. The resulting facility provides enriching opportunities for students from the traditional 6th-grade through 12th-grade ages.
A true “student commons” is the heart of the facility and will be an “all-day” area for multiple activities. The commons is a two-story open space with learning resources located on the second level to enhance the research and project-based components mixed with dining and food-based opportunities on the ground floor. After hours, the “commons” space will provide pre- and post-activity support for both the athletic as well as the performing arts complexes. A full competition gymnasium and competition swimming venue is the connector to the middle school. The performing arts complex provides a complete 650-seat theater with a balcony and all supporting performing arts spaces.
Student services, technology distribution, and support spaces are located between the commons space and the academic area. A three-story academic wing supports the core academic programs with a STEAM-based center, multiple project and team-based spaces, and a three-story learning stair. The learning stair connects all core programs vertically to enhance the cross-pollination of learning activities. Transparency is a key aspect of the facility’s design and is utilized to promote the visual connection between each of the learning activities.
The new facility was constructed while the existing high school on site was still occupied. The existing facility is currently being demolished, and new playing fields will be constructed in its place.
A unique site feature is an underground stream bisecting the site. The project chooses to highlight that challenge by exposing the stream at its outfall within a new outdoor amphitheater and teaching area. This outdoor space enhances internal building program opportunities by connecting them to the exterior. The stream provides for science-based learning activities directly on campus. The new facility allows the students of UMASD to have tremendous additional learning opportunities.
You can view our entry in the Fall 2022 Architectural Portfolio issue of American School & University on page 73 here.
Learn more about the Upper Merion Area High School here.
SG is proud to have partnered with Upper Merion Area School District. Learn more about this great school district here.
SCHRADERGROUP Presents at the 2022 EDspaces Convention in Portland, Oregon
SCHRADERGROUP (SG) attended the EDspaces Education Conference from Wednesday, November 2nd to Friday, November 4th, 2022 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, OR. SG Managing Partner David Schrader and SG Associate Danie Hoffer represented SCHRADERGROUP at the conference.
EDspaces is a place where innovation transforms learning environments. Attendees learned about industry trends, fresh perspectives, and innovative case studies. Professionals from across the country attended to contribute to collective industry knowledge and to add their own voices to the conversation surrounding the future of learning.
EDspaces featured a curated, multi-track educational and professional development series of 60+ education sessions conducted in classrooms designed by visionary A+D firms that competed to share their innovative ideas for the future of learning.
David and Danie were joined by Upper Merion Area School District (UMASD) Superintendent Dr. John Toleno and Upper Merion Area High School (UMAHS) Principal Jonathan Bauer for a special “EDsession” focused on UMAHS. The session, titled, “Student-Focused Design to Inspire Personal Achievement – the Next Generation High School,” explored how technology, space, and pedagogy converge to impact student success. The session profiled how local businesses and industries inspired the design of the new High School in King of Prussia, a suburb of Philadelphia. The session included a discussion on the educational limitations of the existing traditional high school designed in the 1960s as compared to the design of the new high school. The new facility provides higher education level spaces to engage in interactive learning activities of “research, develop, and present!” Spaces integrated throughout offer opportunities in flexible spaces to complement how different students learn.
The presentation visually immersed participants in the design of the school with a fly-around of the building. Using 3-D modeling technology, this tool is used throughout the design process to engage the client and allow the end user to experience the space design from the very early design stages to the full design development including the interior finishes. Participants will experience the volume of the spaces and how students will move through the building.
In addition to the speaking opportunities, attendees were also invited to tour nearby next-generation learning facilities and to attend a symposium on educational disruption. Thank you to Discovery High School, James Faubion Elementary School, and Vancouver Innovation Technology & Arts Elementary School for letting us tour your wonderful schools!
SG was proud to attend this conference again and we are very excited to attend in Charlotte, NC in 2023!
To learn more about EDspaces, click here.
To learn more about SCHRADERGROUP’s commitment to creating 21st Century learning environments, click here.
SCHRADERGROUP Thanks Ed Kirkbride for Helping Shape SG Careers
SCHRADERGROUP (SG) would like to extend the sincerest “Thank You” to Edward E. Kirkbride, NCARB, REFP for the considerable impact he has had on multiple SG employees in their career.
Ed is an educational architectural consultant who had similar involvement in the Association for Learning Environments (A4LE), formerly the Council of Educational Facility Planners International (CEFPI). His work with the organization has brought cutting-edge educational facility concepts and programs to fellow professionals across the globe and he has been involved in the design and construction of a significant quantity of school facilities in his career.
“A very good friend and fellow architect, Ed Kirkbride, mentored both David and me in our careers as architects. I first interned with Ed when I was 18 years old while finishing my senior year in High School. Ed’s firm designed the addition to my High School – East Senior High School in West Chester. My mother very creatively set up a meeting for me to meet Ed since I had expressed an interest in architecture. I ended up working for him the summer following my senior year. I also worked for him a couple of other times while going to college and during my career. David and I started working together around 1992 for Ed while he managed the L. Robert Kimball Office in West Chester. We are both very grateful to have such a great friend and mentor in our lives!” said SG Project Manager Mark Hitchcock.
“My greatest business mentors have been friends who run other types of businesses. I enjoy seeing diverse business models and learning about their challenges and experiences. A mentor in the K-12 planning business, Ed Kirkbride, introduced me to the Association for Learning Environments and promoted me within that organization. I hope I left the organization just a little better off than when I joined it. Thank you, Ed Kirkbride,” said SG Managing Partner David Schrader.
Click here to learn more about SCHRADERGROUP’s work with K-12 school districts.
Click here to learn more about the Association for Learning Environments (A4LE).