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Past Events

Virtual Tour

March 12, 2021
12:00 – 1:00 PM Eastern Time

Eliot Innovation School
Eliot Innovation School
The Eliot Innovation School at 585 Commercial Street serves grades 5-8, and is part of a three-building campus in Boston’s North End. The project involved the transformation and adaptive reuse of a former FDA testing facility turned office building, into a contemporary educational facility. The program includes: classrooms, cafeteria, breakout nooks, a media center, co-located robotics technology and art classrooms. Additionally, spaces are provided for various teaching specialists who move between the multiple Eliot Innovation School locations.

The extensive renovation promotes student engagement and collaboration at every turn. Grand views and thoughtful details bring classrooms, art and technology spaces, and a media center make the entire building a space for learning. History plays a significant part in the design as large windows frame the Boston Harbor, Zakim Bridge, Old North Church and the USS Constitution.

Learning Objectives:
  1. Understand the complexities surrounding the educational program for the Eliot Innovation School which consists of 3 school buildings on 1 site in the City of Boston.
  2. Understand the process of transforming an existing building that has served many purposes before being converted to an educational facility.
  3. Learn about the construction challenges of building adjacent to Boston Harbor
  4. Highlights from the Post-Occupancy Evaluation to learn what works best and what can be modified to meet the educational needs.

Members: FREE | Non-members: $20

Virtual Tour

February 12, 2021
12:00 – 1:00 PM Eastern Time

Saugus Middle / High School
Sited along bustling Route 1, and near the historic Saugus Iron Works, the new Saugus Middle/High School supports forward-thinking education and celebrates the town’s rich history of innovation. The 271,000 sf facility brings together 1,360 middle and high school students in a STEAM-driven complex of fabrication labs, collaboration spaces, and project areas that offer hands-on opportunities for exploratory learning. Grade-level classroom pods establish small learning communities within the school, each featuring a clear identity reinforced by dynamic and colorful super graphics honoring Saugus’ pioneering industries in ice, iron, and lobstering. Multi-story lightwells provide a visual connection between grade levels to foster a sense of shared space and experience, helping the next generation of students to learn and grow.

Members FREE | Non-members $20

Last day to register is February 11 at 9:00 PM Eastern

Sponsored by:

Monthly Design Shares

Schools of the Future Please join the New England Chapter for the first installment of monthly design shares on the second Friday of each month at Noon!

At the A4LE 2012 World Congress on Education, Ron Lamarre of Lavallee Brensinger Architects presented a concept for the Classroom of the Future based on the thesis of Anytime, Anywhere Learning. Years later, William Gould of ARTiK Art & Architecture presented Shifting the Paradigm: A Vision for Learning in 2035 at the A4LE 2018 LearningScapes Conference. Both concepts consider the power of technology and the role it plays in our current and future learning experiences. Amidst the 2020-21 Covid Pandemic educational planners are taking an active role in redefining the learning environment to consider health and wellness while continuing to elevate educational outcomes.

Join our New England Chapter, in cooperation with the BSA K12 Educational Facilities Committee, as we present ARTiK Art & Architecture's video thesis on Schools of the Future emphasizing Anytime, Anywhere Learning – from Anyone for Everyone.

Schools of the Future – Design Presentation
January 8, 2021
12:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

February's presentation will include a tour by HMFH Architects led by Tina Stanislaski and Gary Brock on February 12 at Noon. Details to follow.

Zoom Discussion

August 13, 2020
4:00 PM

View presentation »
Access Passcode: pGJjz!5P

Chapter Members,
Thank you for everyone who participated in the Zoom Happy Hour and Discussion about CTE/CTC and Vocational Education. A special thanks for HMFH and Kaestle Boos Associates for sharing two exciting projects. Once we can meet in person, I look forward to touring these two projects! If you missed our call, please feel free to review the presentations in the Members Forum for the New England Chapter in the Library here.

Outdoor Learning Environments Project Share
Modernization of the Garrison Elementary School, completed in 2017, aimed to upgrade facilities and create a nurturing learning environment. It was focused on fortifying fundamental relationships already embedded in the school's plan – between building and street, building and schoolyard, and building and student. Garrison Elementary serves a diverse, highly involved community that advocated fiercely for the school. We prioritized community engagement to produce a school which reflected the community's identity and aspirations – both indoor and outdoor.

Architects: BELL and Newman. Landscape Architects: LAB.

Learning Goals:
  • Understand several current best practices in outdoor learning environment design
  • Understand several of the most pressing practical concerns in outdoor learning environment design
  • Understand the process of integrating best practices and practical concerns in outdoor learning environment design
  • CEU will be offered

Register in advance for this meeting:

Future discussion topics will include:
  • Safety and Security
  • Special Education
  • FFE
If you have a project you would like to highlight, please reach out to [email protected].

I look forward to seeing you all next month.


Zoom Happy Hour

Thursday, June 11, 2020
4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Please join the New England Chapter for a Zoom Happy Hour! Meet your leaders, provide input on future events, and discuss topics of interest and challenges with A4LE peers. We encourage all of our chapter members to join us for this event and engage with the chapter.

POSTPONED – Chapter Tour

Tuesday, March 24, 2020
4:00 PM

Eliot Innovation School
585 Commercial Street, Boston, MA 02109

Antico Forno
93 Salem Street, Boston, MA 02113

This is a free event. Please RSVP.

Eliot Innovation School
Please join the New England Chapter on March 24th at 4:00 pm for a tour of Eliot Innovation School in Boston’s North End followed by a social gathering at the Antico Forno.

The Eliot Innovation School serves grades K-8 and in a 3-building city campus that serves over 700 students. The tour will take place at the recently completed facility that serves grades 5-8 which features 18 classrooms, a cafeteria, four breakout nooks, a media center, co-located robotics technology and art classrooms and dedicated storage for musical instruments, as music instruction is done with teaching specialists within the classrooms. Additionally, spaces are provided for various teaching specialists who move between the multiple Eliot Innovation School locations.

Please note, there is a Bruins game later that evening so special event parking rates apply at many of the nearby parking garages. It is recommended to use public transportation or park just north of Boston at Assembly Row in Somerville and take the Orange Line three stops to North Station.

Chapter Tour

January 30, 2020
4:00 PM

Salem High School and Career Technical Education
44 Geremonty Dr., Salem, NH 03079

Copper Door in Salem
41 S Broadway, Salem, NH 03079

This is a free event. Please RSVP.

Salem High School
Please join the A4LE New England Chapter for a tour of Salem High School and Career Technical Education followed by a social gathering at the Copper Door in Salem.

The 50-year old comprehensive Salem High School and Career Technical Education Center has been expanded and integrated to provide 1,200 students with a state-of-the-art educational environment. Core academic, performance, art, and music areas have been blended with CTE programs of Biotechnology, Television Productions, Veterinary Sciences, Automotive Technology, and Computer Aided Design; as well as extra-curricular programs of AFJROTC, Journalism, Filmmaking, Drama, Health Occupations, Debate, and Athletics.

Chapter Tour

October 15, 2019
4:00 PM

Perry and Marty Granoff Center for the Creative Arts
154 Angell Street
Providence, RI 02906

Flatbread Company
161 Cushing Street
Providence, RI 02906

Please join the Association for Learning Environments and AIA Rhode Island for a tour of the Perry and Marty Granoff Center for the Creative Arts followed by a Social Gathering at Flatbread Pizza.

The Perry and Marty Granoff Center for the Creative Arts at Brown University is a 38,815 square-foot, three-story, interdisciplinary arts center at the heart of the College Hill campus, designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro.

Granoff Granoff
The facility is an interdisciplinary arts center that fosters innovation, research, collaboration, creativity, and education among the arts, humanities, and sciences. The facility embodies the educational philosophy at the heart of Brown University which emphasizes cross-departmental teaching and learning and interdisciplinary collaboration. The building serves as a physical manifestation of the educational pedagogy and the University’s commitment to excellence.

AIA Rhode Island
The tour is open to all and hosted in collaboration between Association for Learning Environments New England Chapter and AIA Rhode Island.

This is a free event. Please RSVP.

Chapter Event

Tuesday, June 25, 2019
4:00 – 6:00 pm
Steelcase Showroom Boston
101 Seaport Boulevard, Suite 600
Boston, MA 02210

Educator Panel Discussion: Challenge Accepted, Using Architecture to Address the Educational Challenges of the Future
This is a FREE event, please RSVP!

Chapter Tour & Networking Event

Thursday, May 3, 2018
2:30 pm
Lester J. Gates Middle School
460 First Parish Road, Scituate, MA

Please join us for a tour of the new Gates Middle School and a panel discussion with teachers and students about their project-based learning facility. A networking event at the Mill will follow. Read an article about the Gates Middle School library – What Do You Mean There's No Library? Embracing Ultimate Open Concept in a New Building

Members & Non-Members: $20.00
School Districts: FREE

2:30 PM Arrival
2:30 PM - 3:15 PM Project Overview and Round Table Discussion with Teachers and Students
3:15 PM - 4:00 PM Tour
4:00 PM - 4:30 PM Follow-up Discussion with Principal and Tour Guides
4:30 PM - 6:00 PM Networking Event at the Mill

Event Sponsor

Special Chapter Event

Saturday, April 28, 2018
8:00 am – 12:30 pm
Crowne Plaza Hotel Providence-Warwick
801 Greenwich Avenue, Warwick, RI

    3 LU/HSW

The Process of Knowing Symposium

21st Century Learning Environments in Rhode Island: Think. Plan. Build.
Providence Don’t miss this opportunity to learn, explore and examine best practices to improve school project planning, public engagement, and design and construction delivery platforms in the State of Rhode Island.


8:00 – 8:45 AM Registration and Breakfast Buffet
9:00 – 9:15 AM Welcome and Opening Remarks
Dr. Ken Wagner, Commissioner of Education, State of Rhode Island
9:15 – 9:45 AM Change is Possible
Robert Hendricks, III, ALEP, Educational Legacy Planning
9:45 – 10:15 AM Career Pathways
Lorraine B. Finnegan, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, MCPPO, Principal, Vice President, Director of K-12 Studio, SMMA

How can communities and schools respond to new pedagogy to provide students’ opportunities to develop the skills necessary to be college or career ready?

Traditionally Centers for technical education have been perceived as serving students uninterested or incapable of learning in a “standard” high school environment – pulling students from various geographic locales into a centralized environment. As college costs continue to rise and as career ready education and gains interest and as vocational programs draw a broader student and parent interest we see an evolution of the traditional CTC school which is not necessarily producing “tradesmen” and as today’s academic high schools integrate head to hand skills for deeper and social emotional learning as many students by desire or necessity desire to remain “closer to home”. These skills are bringing what goes on in the respective classrooms closer together and in the process bringing the students enrolled in the programs closer together. Both models are in fact moving closer to a comprehensive model of learning.

Connecting vocations to creative expression and learning pathways – the arts and providing exposure to skills that transform a vocational job to a career and/or business mindset – linking to civic values best taught thru the humanities and conducted in the social environment of a school at the heart of a community.

STEM field curricula through PBL and hands on learning are the skills that need to be developed in the early years to prepare students for deeper learning in secondary education - As noted by Indra Krishnamurthy Nooryi Pepsi CEO STEM related skills are foundational and easier to learn at younger ages than later in life and can serve and support a fuller life and career path as a student’s exposure is widened.

How can learning environments contribute and facilitate these goals?

Learning Objectives:
  1. How shared academic and CTE environments can benefit all students
  2. Exposure to varied career opportunities and reducing the stigma of a vocation – importance of the exploratory model.
  3. How adjacencies of academic and CTE can be accomplished
  4. How the Next Generation Science Standards impact learning environments for elementary and middle school grades
10:15 – 10:45 AM Healthy and Sustainable Learning Environments
Chin Lin, Senior Associate, HMFH Architects

Learning environments significantly impact both our ability to learn and overall health; when designed thoughtfully, these environments can improve learning capability and health by using elements in lighting, acoustics, and other design choices. Efficient lighting design balances student exposure to natural daylight with artificial lighting to support a healthy circadian rhythm, and environments with low noise levels allow students to better understand their teachers, while preventing individuals with audio sensitivities from experiencing noise-induced anxiety. Similarly, attention to indoor air quality through the selection of certain building materials can reduce asthma triggers. This workshop explores the ways in which design can maximize the potential of current technology in lighting, acoustics, and other building elements, to create environments that enhance learning, reduce absenteeism, and improve health.
10:45 – 11:15 AM Visualizing the Transformed Learning Environment: Empowering the Educator
Philip R. Conte, AIA, NCARB, Principal / Project Manager, StudioJAED

The important factors that contribute to improved performance in classroom environments such as Light, Temperature, Air Quality, Ownership, Flexibility, Complexity, and Color can be optimally adapted with input and data from those that will be teaching and learning in that space. As designers, if we can create a virtual space to engage these users in the immersive environment, then those who are challenged with visualization using 2-dimensional representations may become our most valuable contributors.

Changing spatial arrangements, color schemes and furniture placement on demand and being able to walk through the space, seeing these changes, will empower educators to better understand the space and how it could shape the delivery of their curriculum. Virtual Reality is not just an advanced media product that enables representation and simulation of reality, but rather becomes an expansion of spatial understanding. By extension of the mental experience, educators can expand the creative imagination of the entire design team. Additionally, life safety elements of a building‘s composition can be explored, shared, and better designed with the use of virtual reality experiences. An example of this is enhancing the wayfinding for fire escape routes and training for active shooter events. With the use of virtual reality, staff and first responders can test simulations in a safe and controlled pre-build.

Virtual reality is evolving from 3-dimensional planned computer animations, as passive expressions of designed space, to interactive real-time explorations. Computer graphic visualization enhances the representational possibilities, enabling not just the visual senses, but providing the educator with direct involvement, interaction and exploration of the created space. Bringing this to the preliminary project phases allows the designer to economically gain user input prior to the expense of construction documentation, and on a timely basis to inform the entire design team early and often in the design process.
11:15 – 11:45 AM Transforming the Learning Environment: New vs. Renovation
Ron Lamarre, AIA, ALEP, ALA, LEED AP BD+C, Design Principal, Lavallee | Brensinger Architects

Transforming your learning environment starts with one of the most important discussions: “whether to renovate or build new”. Balancing the need for better learning places and spaces requires the greatest return on investment; meaning getting more for less. Considering today’s need for safe, secure, inspirational, and meaningful schools requires a wide range of visioning and prioritizing to get the “biggest bang for your buck”. This 30-minute conversation explores thoughtful criteria and procedures to aid in this important decision; and the consequences of the conclusion.
11:45 – 12:15 PM Project Timelines and Delivery Methods
William “Bill” Bryan, Senior Project Executive, Gilbane Building Company
12:15 – 12:30 PM Closing Remarks
Joseph da Silva, PhD, AIA, School Construction Coordinator, RIDE

Program Fee for A4LE Members: $25.00
Public Officials and Educators: FREE

The symposium will be facilitated by members/partners of the Association for Learning Environments and industry leaders in the K-12 market:
    Educational Legacy Planning
    Gilbane Building Company
    HFMH Architects
    Lavallee | Brensinger Architects
    SMMA Architecture | Engineering | InteriorDesign | Planning
    StudioJAED Architects Engineers Facility Solutions

Chapter Event

Thursday, March 15, 2018
7:30 am – 2:30 pm
Houlton Junior High School
MSAD 29 Houlton School District
3 Bird St, Houlton, ME 04730

Nationally Renowned Educational Leader Dr. William Daggett


Preparing Students for Their Future
Houlton Rules, regulations, teaching practices, and traditions that exist in today’s American education were created during the Second Industrial Revolution. As we attempt to meet the needs of today’s students, who have lived their entire lives in the technological/information-based Third Industrial Revolution, this system is being challenged. It’s about to be challenged even more as we enter the Fourth Industrial Revolution – a fusion of technologies that most can’t yet fathom. To be prepared for this changing world, today’s students need a future-focused education program that prepares them with a higher and different set of skills and knowledge than what is currently being taught. It can be done, but how?

In this presentation, Dr. Daggett will explain how these 20th century practices came about and describe why and how transformation is needed. He will share various strategies from the nation’s most rapidly improving schools that have successfully addressed these challenges to prepare all students for the world in which they will live and work.

About the Presenter
Bill Daggett, Ed.D., Founder and Chairman of the International Center for Leadership in Education, is recognized worldwide for his proven ability to move preK-12 education systems towards more rigorous and relevant skills and knowledge for all students. For 25 years, he has crisscrossed our nation, as well as the industrialized world, to lead school reform efforts to effectively prepare students for their future.

While an avid supporter of public education, he also challenges all of us to be more focused on our children’s future than on maintaining the schools of our youth. His insights and leadership has caused nearly every major education association in the country, hundreds of school districts, numerous political and business leaders, publishers, and others to seek out his advice and guidance.

Teachers and Ed Techs from the following districts: RSU 29, RSU 50, RSU 84, MSAD 70, Region 2 School of Applied Technology, Members of the New England Chapter of the Association for Learning Environments.

Mandatory sign-in for each district for purpose of certificates.

7:30 – 8:15 AM Breakfast
muffins, donuts, fruit salad, coffee, and juice
8:30 – 10:00 AM Dr. Daggett
10:00 – 10:20 AM Break
10:20 – 12:00 PM Presentation continues
12:00 – 1:00 PM Lunch
Please select your option when you register
Option 1: Lasagna with meat sauce, salad bar, roll, and dessert
Option 2: Vegetarian lasagna, salad bar, roll, and dessert
Option 3: Barbecue pulled pork over roll, salad bar, and dessert
1:00 – 2:30 PM Presentation

Member $25 | Non-Member $50

Deadline for registration and meal selection March 2, 2018.
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ALEP / Certificate Programs


Comprehensive industry education: ALEP, Advanced Academy and Vibrant Learning Environments


LEsolutions Online Awards


Visit our showcase of past online entry submissions


LearningSCAPES 2021


October 14-17, 2021
Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO