Programs & Events

Previous Conferences & Symposia > 2014 Annual Conference

Sunday Session Presentations

Sunday, October 5, 2014     11:15 am – 12:15 pm

20/20: Evidence-Based Retrofit Strategies for Smart Schools

Ihab Elzeyadi, Ph.D., FEIA, LEED BD+C, Professor of Architecture/Director, High Performance Environments Lab, University of Oregon
John Weekes, AIA, Principal, DOWA-IBI Group

Existing classrooms and educational spaces are problematic. They approximately consume 30% of our electricity, generate 35% of our waste, use 8% of water resources and are responsible for 20% of green house gas (GHC) and carbon dioxide emissions. While, the new construction sector of the building industry has benefited from products and green building strategies to produce high performance sustainable schools, existing classrooms, however, have been largely ignored. This problem is magnified due to the large number of existing educational spaces, generally a product of the past 30-50 years, that are energy and environmentally unconscious. In the US alone these inefficient classroom spaces exceeds 20 billion square foot. This presentation describes a research project to generate evidence-based design guidelines for schools based on field studies, parametric simulations, and meta-analysis. Since many of the new building products and sustainable technologies are not applicable to existing classrooms retrofits, this paper reports on the results of a research project that we have completed to target this problem through the development of evidence based design guidelines for retrofitting existing educational spaces from a triple bottom-line P3 approach of linking retrofit strategies to their impact on people, profit, and planet. Specifically, the guidelines were developed to aid architects and engineers in green retrofits of existing schools for optimized energy consumption while enhancing students' health and academic performance. This presentation provides a synopsis of the Green Classroom Toolbox (GCT) project and a road map for its future application and adoption for green retrofitting of existing schools. The objectives of this project are to develop evidence-based design guidelines for retrofitting existing educational spaces that are based on carbon neutrality metrics and student achievements and well-being outcomes. The basis of these guidelines is extensive energy modeling analysis of 30 retrofit best practices and strategies for the six most common elementary school prototypes in the eight ASHRAE main climate zones. The results of our energy simulation data is further analyzed with regards to an extensive meta-analysis of more than 300 prior studies related to the impacts of the thirty best practices on students' performance and health. One of the significant targets of this project is to link green retrofit best practices with their energy and carbon emission reductions as well as their impact on human health and student achievements. In addition to presenting the evidence based design guidelines, case studies of their application in schools around the country will be presented to offer the audience a practical knowledge of applying these strategies in K-12 schools. The hope is to provide decisions support tool for practitioners and school principals that would help them prioritize and evaluate green classroom retrofit strategies in a comprehensive way.


  • Develop clear understanding of evidence-based design guidelines of green classrooms retrofits
  • Learn through comparative analysis the difference between retrofits and new school construction
  • Employ integrated design and applied research to inform practice /performance assessment of green schools
  • Learn innovative research methods and the value of parametric modelling tools and their application in green schools research and practice

Why Auto Mechanics Matters

Jean-Claude Brizard, College Board
John Chadwick, Arlington Public Schools
Derk Jeffrey, SHW Group

Few factors influence the creation of architecture for education more profoundly than the role played by superintendents, administrators and educators in the design process. Collectively, these individuals possess the depth of understanding – and the vision – -to articulate new and meaningful learning experiences for their students. And though the voice (and support) of the school board and community at-large is crucial to a successful project, it is the convictions held by these individuals that give rise to new models of teaching and learning. This is especially true for the Career and Technical Education. In response to the accelerated change and evolution occurring in both education and economic sectors, preparing our students to succeed in life means we must help them to also understand the relevance of their learning. CTE programs do this, as they bridge core academics to the rigor of real-world applications. Yet for many, CTE courses remain heavily focused on the imparting of specific job skills for workforce-bound students, thereby "closing the door" to a college-ready pathway. This approach unnecessarily limits the opportunity afforded by CTE programs to capture – and inspire – the richness of diversity, creativity and career aspirations represented by all students.


  • Share a brief history and continuum of CTE in the US
  • Summarize global imperatives driving change in education
  • Discuss policy and practice initiatives that benefit every school district
  • Offer suggestions for the planning and design of flexible and CTE spaces

View presentation [11.3 MB]

Mind Shift! The Intersection of Science, Educators, Technology, and Design

Shannon Needham, Barrie School
Chester Bartels, Clockwork
Peter C. Lippman, EIW Architects

Ever dreamed of designing research-based spaces where learners explore concepts in a truly flexible and deliberately inspiring and curiosity-inducing environment rich with technological opportunity? This interactive presentation and workshop will challenge participants to collaborate and design spaces that: (1) are informed by the emerging field of Educational Neuroscience; (2) capitalize on fluid spaces and elements; and (3) deliberately use technology to make the space accessible to a variety of learners across the globe. Potentially, these spaces will allow teachers from a variety of disciplines to experiment with their own learning preferences in order to understand how to facilitate learning for children and adults in a rapidly changing and increasingly collaborative/global educational landscape. Workshop participants will explore how teacher expertise and learner experience intersect with the spaces that are designed to inspire us toward programs and pedagogy better suited to prepare learners for work and life. The end goal of the session is to offer a framework for designing learning spaces that capitalizes both on the trade knowledge of teachers and on the research in the developing field of Educational Neuroscience.


  • Define the field of Educational Neuroscience by reviewing the history of its development and examining its current impact on education, including professional development and teacher training.
  • Review the research regarding the intersection between research in Educational Neuroscience and space design.
  • Examine the role of teachers and technology in the success of designed spaces.
  • Provide examples and ideas for “lab” spaces designed using principles of Educational Neuroscience in which teachers learn and explore learning in order to inform their own pedagogical choices.

View presentation [5.6 MB]

Looking Back to Look Forward

Benjamin Gardner, Dekker/Perich/Sabatini
Julie Walleisa, Dekker/Perich/Sabatini

We will use 3 case studies of K-12 schools designed 20-40 years ago as the basis for a discussion about which design principles have stood the test of time, and what lessons can be drawn from the limitations of the original design vision and changes made to the schools over time. Issues examined through these case study examples will include lessons about building organization, classroom size and configuration, space use, materials, sustainable performance, and identity.


  • Participants will be able to identify design strategies common in schools from 20-40 years ago.
  • Participants will be able to describe methods of post-occupancy analysis of existing schools and select appropriate methods for different evaluation needs.
  • Participants will be able to compare results of the examples analyzed and formulate their own hypothesis.
  • Participants will be able to apply the lessons from this analysis to inform their own school design efforts.

View presentation [4.6 MB]

High-rise to High School – Taking Schools Vertical

Ngugi Mathu, Collins Cooper Carusi Architects

With the lack of available land in urban city centers, large urban school districts have been forced to seek out creative ways to accommodate growth and expansion of school facilities. In some cases, existing urban sites and buildings never imagined as school facilities become available. This session will offer a case study examining how Atlanta Public Schools had the vision and forethought to transform an existing 11-story office building into a 2400-student high school. We will analyze the design principles employed by the architectural team in adapting a high-rise office building to the unique requirements of a high school facility including building organization, student safety and vertical movement. We will also explore the operational challenges the school district and administration has faced during their inaugural year.


  • Understanding Life Safety & Security In High-Rise Schools
  • Understanding How School Organization Is Affected By a High-Rise Building Typology
  • Understanding The Impacts Of Vertical Movement of Students In A High-Rise School
  • Understanding The Operational Challenges In High-Rise Schools

Engaging Middle School Students in Hands-on Science and Engineering through Sustainable Design Thinking

Alec Holser, Opsis architecture
Michael Becker, Hood River Middle School
Hood River Middle School Students, Hood River Middle School

How do we design curriculum and facilities that reach out and connect young adults to provide engaging experiences in science and engineering that will be critical for creating a sustainable future? Using the Hood River Middle School FACS Food and Conservation Science program and the LEED Platinum/ Net-Zero Energy Science and Music building as a platform for understanding, conference participants will work with an exceptional group of middle school students in a hands-on group design workshop to create a fully integrated learning eco-system. The facilities architect, engineer and the program's teacher will provide the technical framework, while students facilitate side by side with conference participants in groups to discover how connections between systems are the foundation of integrated design.


  • Attendees will meet an exceptional group of young students who completed an intensive design/build process that immersed them in the science and engineering disciplines.
  • Attendees will gain perspective on how sustainable architecture can influence educational curriculum and captivate the interests and imaginations of a diverse student body.
  • Attendees will explore ways they can use building and landscape architecture to create a living laboratory
  • Attendees will learn about the specific technical innovative sustainable design strategies to achieve a net-zero educational facility

View presentation [6.5 MB]

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

The Nation's High Performing Schools: Strategies You Can Implement Today

Marty Sims, SHW Group
Jonathan Aldis, SHW Group

Take a one hour field trip through four of the most non-traditional education programs in the country and walk away with ideas that will change the way you think about education. In this virtual tour you will meet the principals, hear from students, see the schools, and explore the educational programs that are better engaging students and resulting in higher attendance, test scores, community engagement, and graduation rates. See how they are also reducing discipline referrals, teacher turnover, and teacher/student absenteeism.


  • Analyze what some of the most innovative programs in the country are doing and how they are having a significant impact on students
  • Discover 6 powerful underlying principles that can be used anywhere
  • Learn what learners value in educational environments
  • Learn how these programs empower their learners and build confidence

Working Together on Common Ground

Rick Molitor, Superintendent, Jefferson County School District
Darryl Smith, Director of Human Services, Jefferson County School District
Laurie Danzuka, Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs and School Board Member
Dave Fishel, Construction Management, Wenaha Group
Renee Alexander, AIA, Principal, BBT Architects

Over 25 years in the making, Oregon's Jefferson County School District and Confederated Tribes of Warm (CTWS) joined together to design and build a K-8 Academy that will serve the children living on the Warm Springs Reservation. This is one of the first examples in the U.S. of a public school district and Native American tribes working together as a unified team to design a school that blends tribal culture with advanced learning technologies and opportunities. The District passed a construction bond in May 2012, of which approximately $10,736,300 was set aside for the construction of the new K-8 building located in Warm Springs. Through a Memorandum of Agreement and an Interagency Education Agreement between the Jefferson County School District 509J, the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs will provide 50% of the total project budget of $21,472,600 for the construction. The school is approximately 80,000 square feet with supporting athletic facilities on approximately 20 acres of land. The Tribes funded a portion of the construction costs using a loan from the USDA Rural Loan Program. Another major goal of this project was to create jobs and support businesses, especially on the reservation. With support of the Tribal Council, nearly 45% of the team members who worked on the Warm Springs K-8 project were Tribal employees. Following stringent contract requirements, this project was utilized by the Tribes to help ensure significant Tribal employment in all Tribal Employment Programs.

The District
Jefferson County School District 509-J in Oregon serves the communities of Madras, Warm Springs Reservation, Metolius and Antelope with seven schools, and includes 2,900 students in grades K-12 and 400 staff members. The district is proudly among the most culturally diverse in Oregon with equal populations of Native America, Hispanic, and Caucasian students.

The Tribes
The Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs (CTWS) is a federally recognized group of Indian tribes located in north central Oregon. The Reservation consists of 640,000 acres and is home to three (3) tribes: the Warm Springs, Wasco, and Paiute, with each Tribe having their own diverse history and heritage. Currently there are approximately 5,062 enrolled Tribal members, 838

Tribal employees, and a population of approximately 4,130 living in the community. The Reservation is 104 miles south of Portland and 60 miles north of Bend, with tribal headquarters located just off Highway 26 in the community of Warm Springs.


  • Learn about the success of two agencies coming together as equals after 25 years of discussion and strife
  • Hear how dedication and determination provided a successful employment program, put Tribal members back to work, and exposed them to trades and careers through the construction of this project.
  • See how the many interactive Tribal Community Meetings helped create the cultural images and ideas embedded in the design.
  • Hear from key members and how this project has been a turning point for the district and the tribes.

The ACES Research Project: School Design Factors Which Influence Student Achievement

Greg Monberg, AIA, CEFP, LEED AP, Fanning Howey

What do principals' assessments say about the impact of facilities on student performance? Hear the results of a year-long survey of Illinois K-12 school principals that identified key factors which impact education. While the discussion regarding data-driven planning and design often centers around topics such as daylighting, thermal comfort, and acoustics, the Academic Commissioning of Environments of Schools (ACES) research project suggests that there are other key factors in a school facility's impact on student performance. Audience members will learn about these factors and will understand how to apply the survey results in ways that maximize student performance and achieve the greatest ROI on facility improvement initiatives in their own communities. The findings of the research project will be brought to life with real-world examples of how the identified elements are positively impacting learning in schools across the nation.


  • Learn about key facility factors that impact the quality of education (based on surveys of Illinois school principals).
  • Understand how these factors translate to receiving the maximum ROI on future facility projects.
  • Understand the research-based methodology use to reach these conclusions.
  • Examine real-life examples of your facilities are using this research to improve education across the country.

View presentation [2.4 MB]

Reinventing the School for Students with Special Needs

Brian Parker, AIA, CEFP, MHTN Architects
Gary R Payne AIA, Davis School District, Administrator of Facilities Management
Jennifer Novoa, Principal Vista Education Campus, Davis School District

The Vista Education Campus serves secondary and post-secondary aged students ranging from those with severe medical and intellectual disabilities to those whose disabilities fall within the mild-moderate range. It is an active learning environment that supports students that have many diverse learning needs. The spaces in the building accommodate many different teaching methodologies and transition-related activities. There are spaces for collaboration and group activities, traditional classroom activities, and spaces that support independent learning and individualized instruction. Rather than design a school that looked like an institutional 1960's elementary school, the district wanted to elevate the design of their school for students with special needs by using the best current thinking on school design and apply it to meet their needs. The Vista Education Campus is a flexible learning environment that supports collaboration, interaction, learning by doing and discovery. It is a paradigm shifting example of what a school specifically designed to support student with special needs can become. Through careful understanding of student and educator needs, each element in the school contributes to deliberately reinventing how a special needs facility can enhance the learning experience for each student. This session will outline the process of reinventing a school for students with special needs. The traditional programming and visioning process led to questioning and rethinking everything we see in a typical school for students with special needs. The result is a new concept of what a school needs to be in order to help students with special needs achieve. The session will also outline the specific features designed to promote the transition to independent, responsible adulthood and will describe how student achievement and behavior has improved in the new facility.


  • Identify a new paradigm in designing schools for students with special needs
  • Define the many school features and design elements that will support students with moderate to severe physical disabilities
  • Develop an understanding of the various characteristics students with special needs may have and how careful facility design can provide comfort and inspire learning
  • Explore revolutionary special needs facility that implements 21st century methodologies to empower students with special needs, and how careful design can promote improvement in student behavior and achievement

View presentation [2.4 MB]

Post Occupancy Evaluation – a Classic Detective Game

Julie Hendricks, Kirksey Architecture
Colley Hodges, Kirksey Architecture

Buildings across the country are underperforming relative to the goals they were designed to meet. Problems can result from a host of causes including unexpected occupant usage, untrained maintenance staff, malfunctioning technology, and design errors. Post-occupancy evaluations (POEs) are an effective and increasingly popular method to uncover performance problems and then research, understand, and address their causes. Parameters including energy performance, indoor air quality, thermal comfort, illuminance, and acoustical performance are often assessed by taking measurements over a given time period and evaluating their meaning. However, it isn't always immediately clear what secrets those POE measurements have revealed—interpreting the results requires deductive reasoning and synthesized knowledge of building systems. Drawing on our experience with post-occupancy studies on eight completed buildings, we have developed a classic detective game to walk attendees through how to conduct a POE study, evaluate the results, and understand the significance of acting on those results. In this game, participants will be introduced to several schools with known problems that are the subjects of POE studies. Each attendee will be randomly given a color-coded envelope with a clue that will help them form a team and uncover the cause of the problem with a particular school. One set of envelopes will include an image and description of a POE tool (for example, a CO2 monitor), along with a range of optimal values for that tool. Another set of envelopes will include a measurement yielded by a particular tool (for example, 650 ppm) in a particular building. Using corresponding envelope colors as their guide, attendees will seek out their counterpart—the measurement that came from their tool, or the tool that yielded their measurement. Each school will have multiple measurement and tool clues, which means each school will end up with a team of participants who will collaborate to discuss the data collected and deduce the "hidden cause" of their school's problem. They will then report their conclusion and describe their deliberation process to the entire group, and the facilitators will let them know if they've found the correct answer.


  • Participants will understand the reasons for conducting a POE study and some typical methodologies.
  • Participants will be able to list specific types of on-site measurements that may be taken during a POE and why they are significant.
  • Participants will be able to identify typical benchmarks of building performance based on on-site measurements.
  • Participants will be able to connect the results of on-site measurements to underlying problems in building performance.

View presentation [4.8 MB]

Owner Project Requirements – The Missing Link Between Performance and Design

Joel C Davis, MBA, MENG
Doug Smith, PE, LEED AP, CSBA, MENG Analysis

Why do new and renovated K-12 Schools frequently perform below expectations? Largely because of the missing link: Essential feedback from O&M to the planning and design process with an Owner Project Requirements (OPR) document. Typical project design kick-off meeting between a district's capital projects group and selected A/E design team may read like this: The client calls for an energy-efficient, low-maintenance school that captures the imagination. The design team says "will do!" and creates an award-winning facility to inspire education and learning. Building systems are selected, but when cost estimates arrive, the project is over-budget – and often comprises occur at the point of systems performance. It may be that the mechanical penthouse is reduced in size to the point there is no room to turn a wrench; the penthouse elevator may be replaced with manually-rigged fan wheel and motor replacements; the Energy Star double low-E operable windows are reduced to code minimum fixed windows; and the result is a facility with poor energy performance from systems that are impossible to maintain.

The Missing Link: An OPR document for each project developed in advance of design team selection, with the OPR criteria serving as part of the design proposal scoring. OPR requirements should be specific, measurable, and achievable. They should add to the facility's energy efficiency and reduce overall maintenance costs.

Imagination and creativity while inspiring the soul should not overshadow comfort, operation, and maintenance. Every district can have what it wants, but will never get that for which it has not asked – the OPR provides an industry proven tool to ask for performance. The OPR establishes total cost of ownership and provides the essential criteria to determine at the beginning of the project how the school will perform over time. The OPR provides district facilities management professionals clear, direct input on capital project planning and design process to ensure the integrity of what matters most – providing high quality facilities to educate our young people, while remaining good stewards of the public trust and taxpayer dollars.


  • Perspectives on integrated design and project delivery
  • Traditional methods of O&M input and the facility planning/design process;
  • Commissioning requirements for code, sustainability benchmarks, and energy efficiency programs;
  • The brave new world of OPRs and total cost of ownership

2:45 pm – 3:45 pm

Classroom Technology

Steve Kelly, Glumac

The topic of integrating technology into the classroom has long elicited a number of questions from teachers and facilities planners alike: Should each classroom be configured the same? Is integrating new technology affordable? How can we help easily facilitate the adoption of new technologies with senior staff? It's a conversation fraught with several myths that have stifled the true benefit advanced technologies can have on the learning environment. In my conversations with educators and students alike, I've seen the best of what technology can bring to the classroom and the immense impact it can have on students' learning outcomes when implemented in a sensible and usable way. What I plan to discuss and demonstrate are the real-world benefits of having every student connected, how to ensure new technologies are manageable and usable across the entire staff, and the challenges and payoffs in the design of a fixed classroom versus an open classroom. By the end of this session, I'll have illustrated how technology can be both versatile and accessible, and will finally dispel the myth that all classrooms must be configured the same!


  • Dispel the myth that each classroom must be configured the same.Learn the challenges and benefits of 1-to-1 and the BYOD movement for facility and IT planners.
  • Demonstrate how we can help facilitate the adoption of new technologies with senior staff.
  • High sustainability will ensure that the execution is not a one-time effort; needed repeatedly in the future.
  • Find out how our districts create their culture of conservation.

Why call it a 'Library?'

Mani Ardalan Farhadi, Associate AA, LEED AP, Steinberg Architects
Janet Terranova, Monte Vista High School

Have you been asked recently whether books and libraries will still be needed in the future? When a visionary donor stepped up to finance a 'library' project at a public high school in the California Bay Area, our team was asked this very question at the interview. We will be querying the audience and asking for your feedback as we present the evolution we undertook with Monte Vista High School towards finding the answers. By taking into account the traditional needs of the librarian, the construction concerns of the District facilities, the technological demands of the IT department, the idealist vision of the donor, the inventive foresight of the School Administration and the inquisitive suggestions of the students, we collaborated to design a 'library of the future.' Explore with us the unusual assignment of creating what came to be a 'learning commons' and hub of activity that ultimately transformed the campus experience for every student and educator on the campus. We will share with you our Post-Occupancy research when we ventured back on campus to observe the results of implementing this once-in-a-lifetime project.


  • Investigate the history of library transformation from the bygone analog era to the digital age for the next generation.
  • Engage with School Administration, Librarian, District, IT, Donor and Students to create an experience never imagined on campus.
  • Maximize the functions, spaces, and furniture adaptability for flexible programs within a public high school learning commons.
  • Evaluate the Post-Occupancy project utilization, obtain feedback and find unexpected outcomes.

View presentation [5.9 MB]

The Next Steve Jobs: Unleashing the Great Minds of Tomorrow with Innovative Science Education Paradigm and Design Creativity

Sonnet Hui, LEED AP, Steinberg Architects
David Hart, AIA, LEED AP, Steinberg Architects

Are we prepared to welcome the next generation of thinkers, innovators, entrepreneurs, creators and disrupters into our school environments? Independent K-12 education sits at the center of a strong, sustainable future for our country because of its adaptability to changing circumstances and environments. The Sage Hill School's next-generation Science Center promotes discovery through interdisciplinary collaboration and active inquiry-based classroom experiences. It fuels innovative teaching and builds on the fundamentals of science to benefit not only its students but also those in the greater community through partnerships with universities, non-profit organizations, and local businesses. Learn how innovation and creative design thinking was used as the basis for design, fundraising, construction delivery and curriculum development, thus approaching education holistically. With the unveiling of the Exploratorium, Phase II of the Science Center, Sage Hill strives to give students a safe place to explore, create and most importantly, to fail. This "Makerspace" challenges, inspires, and prepares students for an open-ended future by nurturing 21st century learners who thrive on interdisciplinary collaboration, and global citizens who respect and give back to the world community. The result: students with the confidence to use their talents to initiate positive and groundbreaking solutions to virtually any type of problem. Come experience firsthand design thinking in action and let your imagination translate into meaningful initiatives in education.


  • Next Generation Learning Environments
  • Programming, Planning and Design/Programming Paradigms
  • Community Input/Ownership and Feedback
  • Engagement, Motivation and Challenging Educators in the Planning Process

View presentation [1.8 MB]

The Convergence of Planning, Architecture, and Engineering to Support the "Reinvention" of Seaford High School

Richard D. Moretti, StudioJAED
Roy Whitaker, Seaford School District
Philip Conte, StudioJAED

The Seaford School District was struggling to retain high school students within the District since many were opting to attend technical schools or choice out of the District to other nearby private and public high schools. In order to reverse this trend and to assure the best possible educational opportunities for high school age students within the Seaford School District, a comprehensive "reinvention" of Seaford High School was undertaken by the District, financed primarily with significant Federal "Race to the Top" funding. This case study examines and chronicles the engagement by StudioJAED Architects & Engineers with the District in the planning and design of renovations and additions to Seaford High School to support that "reinvention." Early on, the District determined that the "schools-within-a-school" concept was an effective option so as to allow a variety of opportunities for students dependent upon their needs and interests. They settled on four Academies which included a New Tech Academy(after the New Tech Network model), an Entrepreneurship Academy, a Military Academy, and an International Baccalaureate Academy. Although funding for the curricular implementation came from "Race to the Top," capital improvement funding would have to occur through the passage of a bond referendum. This seminar chronicles and exemplifies the efforts undertaken by the District and StudioJAED to effect a comprehensive capital improvement plan to assure that the facility would support teaching and learning in the four Academies. These efforts included:

  • Referendum planning and support
  • Investigation of curricular requirements
  • Investigation of facility requirements to support teaching and learning
  • Early and continuing collaboration among planners, architects, and engineers in designing integrated systems that support teaching and learning
  • Early and continuing collaboration between the design team and the Seaford School District
  • Peer review to assure adherence to a design model that supports teaching and learning
  • An analysis of feedback from facility users

Each of these areas will be investigated with an emphasis on the collaborative aspects, not only between the design team and the District, but also among the individual members of the design team. In addition, unique aspects of the planning process will be emphasized including a two-charrette collaborative design process that includes the development of educational specifications between the two charrettes. Furthermore, significant architectural and engineering innovations that were included in the design will be discussed, especially with regard to the synergism between the two. As an example, chilled beam technology will be delivering the HVAC to all areas within the building-chosen because of its high energy efficiency, but also because of the very quiet operation of each unit. Also discussed will be the unique break-out spaces designed into the corridors to afford individual and groups of students the opportunity to work in a non-classroom environment. These are two of several examples that will be chronicled. Finally, feedback received from the occupants of the building, including both staff and students, on how well the facility supports teaching and learning, will be offered and discussed.


  • To understand the benefits of using a two-charrette design process that includes the development of educational specifications between the two charrettes.
  • To understand the roles of engineering and architecture in supporting teaching and learning, especially in dealing with innovative curriculum models such has New Tech.
  • To understand how some of the newer energy developments, including CCHP (Combined Heating, Cooling, and Power), chilled beam technology, condensing boilers, etc. contribute to an overall effective and energy conscious design.
  • To understand the relationship among planning, architecture, and engineering that may assure a successful design effort.

Space Planning Like Google and Harvard

Monte Hunter, AIA, Parkhill Smith & Cooper

See how your district can plan facility space in a quick and cost effective manner using predictive analytics similar to Apple, Fidelity Investments, Google, Harvard University and IBM. This method forecasts how much space will be needed in your district to accommodate needs and emerging educational programs.


  • The use of predictive analytics in everyday life
  • How to use peer data to benchmark existing space
  • How to use predictive analytics in space planning
  • Justifying space needs using peer data & predictive analytics

View presentation [3.5 MB]

Play Nice – "Dealing With" Your Commissioning Authority

Jeff Yirak, P.E., LEED AP BD+C, O+M, Wood Harbinger, Inc
Paul Johnson, P.E., CSI, LEED AP BD+C, Wood Harbinger, Inc
Keith Johnson, AIA, LEED AP, DOWA-IBI Group

Can't we all get along? Join this discussion with a panel consisting of a commissioning authority, mechanical engineer, and architectural representative as we examine how to improve collaboration between the Owner, design team, and commissioning team. We're all working for the same goal (and same entity), but often we find ourselves out of alignment. Improving this relationship will benefit the project by improving functional, cost, and schedule performance. Specific topics include: Who should be the CxA? –Selecting the right CxA based on experience, qualifications, and certification. What does the CxA do? –WSSP, LEED & SEED program requirements for commissioning What does it mean for me? –Maximize value by re-tuning the relationship between the CxA and the design team. Hint: start early! Specific project examples will be provided to generate audience discussion.


  • Identify the minimum program requirements for commissioning schools.
  • Comprehensively review commissioning authority qualifications.
  • Integrate commissioning activities into the design, construction, and post-occupancy phases of a project.
  • Improve the value of commissioning on future projects by synergizing the relationship between the design team and the commissioning authority.

View presentation [107 KB]

Play for All: The Inclusive Play Movement in Alaska Blazes a Trail for Schools

Leah Boltz, Parks for All/Bettisworth North
Jonny Hayes, Bettisworth North

Alaska built its first fully inclusive Boundless Playground in Anchorage in 2013. Through a grassroots initiative called Parks for All, a group of kids with special needs inspired this community to go beyond ADA compliance to embrace the inclusive play movement and change Alaska's playscape. Parents, school staff and a group of 5th and 6th graders are now taking the inclusive play movement to their community schools, asking school districts to give ALL kids access to play. Parks for All's founder shares the story and lessons learned and gives facility planners a new perspective on inclusive play at school.


  • Learn the distinction between ADA requirements and inclusive playgrounds.
  • Learn the definitions of inclusive play, how we determine what is inclusive and why it is important to learning environments.
  • Learn public involvement, resources and planning tools for inclusive playgrounds. Includes case studies.
  • Learn strategies and funding opportunities for incorporating inclusive play into community schools.