James D. MacConnell Award

The MacConnell Award celebrates comprehensive projects that address a detailed and specific planning process resulting in a facility that supports the educational goals of the district, the needs of a community and is student-centered for active and dynamic learning. It addresses all components of the criteria in an exceptional manner. The James D. MacConnell award is the most prestigious of all the Association's Awards – and is awarded to the most distinctive submission. There is one winning project and several finalists identified. Projects that are submitted for the MacConnell award, but are not named as Finalists, will also be entered in the Project Awards categories, which category is at the jury’s discretion.
  • James D. MacConnell Award Finalists
    Projects submitted to the MacConnell Award program will be reviewed by the MacConnell Jury and a few of these projects will be awarded the title of James D. MacConnell Award Finalist.

  • James D. MacConnell Award Winner
    MacConnell Award Finalist teams will be invited to submit a video and to be interviewed by the MacConnell Jury. All Finalist videos will be played at the LearningSCAPES Conference. One of the Finalists will be named the James D. MacConnell Award winner at the LearningSCAPES Conference.

Core Values of the Association to be recognized and articulated in the dossier:
  • Learners First: Projects should recognize the importance students and place their needs as the top priority. The planning and design should demonstrate a student-centered environment.
  • Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion: The design process deliberately and authentically engaged all voices and perspectives.
  • Innovation: The project achieves innovation through the exploration of opportunities at the intersection of learning and place.
  • Collaboration, Collegiality, Connection: The planning & design process of the project was collaborative and connected to achieve a result that serves multiple goals and stakeholders.
  • Respect: The project embraces and demonstrates new ideas and diverse perspectives.
  • Place Matters: The project exemplifies an alignment of teaching and learning with the physical environment.

Criteria

The MacConnell jury will use the following scoring criteria and weights to evaluate each submission.

  1. School & Community Research and Engagement (25 points)
    1. Describe the Community
    2. Identify stakeholders
    3. Name challenges
    4. Describe available assets
    5. Describe value of process and project to community at large
    6. Describe how the engagement fostered Justice, Equity Diversity and Inclusion
    7. Include relevant portions of Educational Specifications and Visioning documents throughout the dossier
    8. Process graphics and relevant diagrams are welcome
  2. Educational Environment (25 points)
    1. Explain the educational vision and goals of the school.
    2. Describe & illustrate how the environment supports the curriculum
    3. Describe & illustrate how the environment supports a variety of learning & teaching styles
    4. Describe & illustrate how the environment is adaptable and flexible
    5. Describe innovative aspects of the educational environment
    6. Address and articulate A4LE Core Values throughout the dossier
  3. Results of Process (25 points)
    1. Explain how the project achieves educational goals and objectives
    2. Explain how the project achieves school district goals
    3. Explain how the project achieves community goals
    4. Explain any unintended results and achievements of the process & project
    5. Explain how the project provides value and good stewardship of financial resources
  4. Physical Environment (25 points)
    1. Describe & illustrate the physical attributes of the environment
    2. Describe & illustrate how the facility fits within the larger context of the community
    3. Describe & illustrate how the project inspires and motivates
    4. Describe innovative aspects of the physical environment
    5. Describe how the physical environment fosters Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
    6. Describe how the physical environment fosters sustainability and wellness
    7. Include Site Plan, Floor Plans and Images

Submittal Requirements

All projects must have been completed within the last 5 years.

Online registration and identification of the following must be done prior to sending the application materials.

  • Identify project (project name, location, district, configuration, etc.)
  • Identify key firms / individuals of the process

Project Dossier

PDF file, not to exceed 25 pages. Include as many photographs and/or images as necessary to illustrate and describe the process and overall project. Please avoid solicitation of any particular brand or firm involved in the project. Contents of each section are suggested to provide the jury adequate material to apply the scoring criteria.

The dossier should include the following sections:
  • Executive Summary—describe the overall goals and outcomes of the project
  • Scope of Work and Budget
  • School & Community Research and / or Engagement
    • Describe the Community
    • Identify stakeholders
    • Name challenges
    • Describe available assets
    • Describe value of process and project to community at large
  • Educational Environment Design
    • Explain the educational vision and goals of the school
    • Depict & illustrate how the designed environment supports the curriculum
    • Depict & illustrate how the designed environment supports a variety of learning & teaching styles
    • Depict & illustrate how the environment is adaptable and flexible
  • Results of the Process & Project
    • Describe & illustrate how the project achieves educational goals and objectives
    • Describe & illustrate how the project achieves school district goals
    • Describe & illustrate how the project achieves community goals
    • Describe & illustrate any unintended results and achievements of the process & project
  • Physical Environment Design
    • Depict & illustrate the site plan
    • Depict & illustrate the physical attributes of the environment
    • Depict & illustrate how the facility fits within the larger context of the community
    • Describe & illustrate how the project inspires and motivates
  • Sustainability and Wellness
    • Describe & illustrate the energy-efficiency within the solution
    • Describe & illustrate durable and green materials relating to maintenance
    • Describe & illustrate the healthy environmental aspects

Design Exhibit Submittal Requirements

Display in the Design Exhibit at LearningSCAPES is included in the registration fee for the Planning & Design Awards.

  • Submit two PDF files of a 20x40 display; one with a company logo and one without.
  • Name the files the project name with appendix as follows:
    • ProjectName_Display.pdf
      1. Firm information may not be included
      2. School, District, Location may be identified
      3. This file will be used by the jury
    • ProjectName_Display_Logo.pdf
      1. Firm information and logo may be included
      2. School, District, Location should be identified
      3. This file will be used to print the display board for LearningSCAPES exhibit
  • Graphics should illustrate the key components of the project.
  • Boards can include text to tell the story and/or draw focus and attention to a particular component of the project.
  • Include a brief description of the scope of project and budget.
  • Photo Release Form. Please complete, sign, and include the photo release form in the submittal transmission. One release per project.
  • Display boards of MacConnell Finalists, Project Award winners and Special Commendations will be marked with ribbons in the Design Exhibit.

Award Acceptance

Pricing

MacConnell Award
Member 1 Project $800
Member 2 Projects $1,050
Member 3 Projects $1,300
Non-Member 1 Project $1,000
Non-Member 2 Projects $1,250
Non-Member 3 Projects $1,500

All projects submitted will be required to submit a 20x40 project display panel for the LearningSCAPES Conference. Pricing includes the display board.

Submissions should be sent to Michelle Mitchell at [email protected]

2024 registration coming in March.

Timeline

Key Dates
May 31 Registration Due
June 9 Application Materials Due
June – July Jury Review
July 21 MacConnell Finalists Named
September 11-15 Finalist Interviews
September 22 Finalist Videos Due
October 12-15 Award Ceremony, MacConnell Winner Named
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October 16-19, 2024
Portland, OR

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