Building Bridges of Success   May 8-10, 2019
Building Bridges of Success: For Learners, Educators, and Facilitators
Hilton Vancouver Washington
Vancouver, WA

WEDNESDAY, MAY 8, 2019 | 4:30 PM – 6:00 PM
Workshop:  Getting to Zero Energy Schools
Amy Cortese, Program Director, New Buildings Institute
Ruwan Jayaweera, PAE Consulting Engineers
Stefee Knudsen, Hacker Architects

Zero energy schools are being delivered on conventional budgets and schedules. These buildings offer students and teachers healthy and productive learning spaces and deliver cost avoidance on utility expenses. This panel will weave the experiences and lessons learned of districts and technical experts as they share steps to success in designing, constructing and operating school facilities that produce as much energy as they consume. Participants will walk away with an understanding of the overall process, technical design features and practices from others who are on the path to making zero energy a reality in schools.

Learning Objectives:
  • Describe the current status of zero energy schools across North America.
  • Understand the process associated with designing, constructing and operating a school to zero net energy.
  • Through group discussions and access to experts, utilize lessons learned and approaches uncovered through high performance school research and used by other school districts on the path to zero.
  • Apply planning and technical tools needed to achieve successful zero net energy project planning, financing, design, construction, and operations.
Workshop: Intersecting Neuroscience Research on Learning and Memory with Environment Design to Enhance Student Learning
Page Dettmann, PhD., MeTEoR

Education is an applied science that benefits from being grounded in empirical research of how the brain learns. This evidence-based information helps educators with the design of innovative learning experiences that engage students and lead to successful learning. Emerging research now is linking the science of learning to a school’s physical design. Features of a school environment can have a significant impact on student learning success. Neuroscientists are studying how the environment triggers the brain for learning, supports absorption of information, provides retrieval cues, activates the senses, and helps learning occur more rapidly and with greater retention. The session will present a bi-directional conversation between education and architecture to translate what we currently know about the science of learning to the design of school facilities. The overall focus will examine how the scientific principles of innovative teaching and learning can be highly supported by the design of school spaces. Our conversation will outline key principles about how students learn, apply those principles to a new mindset for teaching and learning, and further apply the principles to their direct influence on environmental design.

Learning Objectives:
  • Participants will gain knowledge on how learning and memory work and the effects of color on memory
  • Participants will become aware of the impact of environmental factors on learning and memory
  • Participants will become familiar with the key brain structures and systems involved in learning and the effect of shapes in the built environment on the learning process
  • Participants will learn about the role of key brain structures and emotions in learning and the intricate relationships among environmental, social, and individual factors
  • Participants will gain cutting-edge knowledge about learning and memory, brain function, neuroscience, and environments.
Workshop: Climate Change Education in Washington Schools
Meredith Lohr, Executive Director, Washington Green Schools
Stacy Meyer, Science Coordinator, Education Service District 112

Educators across Washington are learning how to bring climate science into their classrooms with professional development from Washington Green Schools, ESD 112, and UW’s Climate Impacts Group, and with funding from OSPI. In seminars on local topics such as wildfires, floods and droughts, and agriculture, teachers access current data and resources and explore how to make climate change relevant in their schools. In this session, we will share the state of climate education in Washington and discuss how sustainability projects in schools can help combat climate change.

Learning Objectives:
  • Understand the state of climate education efforts in schools and how OSPI is investing in teacher professional development
  • Learn best practices for engaging teachers and schools in climate change education, including integrating academic standards
  • Explore local, relevant impacts of climate change on students and schools in Washington
  • Engage in discussion about school action projects that get students involved in climate solutions
THURSDAY, MAY 9, 2019 | 8:30 AM – 9:30 AM
Session 1A:  A Tale of Two Schools: Engaging Community and Uncovering a True Culture of Teaching and Learning
Michael McGavock, Principal, McGranahan Architects
Aaron Winston, Project Architect, McGranahan Architects
Brian Derbes, Teacher, Tacoma Public Schools

Following the 2013 bond, Tacoma Public Schools created “A Vision for the Elementary Learning Environment: Guidelines for Building Planning and Design.” Envisioned as an alternative to traditional educational specifications, the Guidelines were created to aid the District in creating a “culture that wraps around our kids so they are learning all day, every day, and throughout the year.” This District philosophy invites architects to think holistically about their designs, to look at community assets and attributes before planning the spaces needed on site, to engage and empower the community in and around the school, and to create a place that truly reflects the culture while meeting the specific needs of students and neighbors. McGranahan Architects was given the unique opportunity to design two concurrent elementary schools under this vision. In addition to a 500-student population, Birney Elementary School also serves deaf and hard-of-hearing students from 13 districts and has the largest pre-K program in Tacoma. Grant Center for the Expressive Arts is Tacoma's arts-infused magnet school, serving 400 students. Located on opposite sides of the city, each school seemed to stand alone. As the design teams for each school explored the two neighborhoods and compared the opportunities within each school with the District’s Visioning Guidelines, a single question arose: “What can Grant and Birney learn from each other and how can we facilitate a deep discussion?” Join us for a discussion about how purposeful and respectful community engagement shaped the designs of each school around the characteristics and perspectives of residents and school personnel. We'll share how design teams were given creative freedom and time to explore deep questions with each community during pre-design, both separately and together. By leaning in to the existing cultural concerns of each school, we quickly found that bringing these two diverse communities together to cross-pollinate ideas and inspiration proved to be the most exciting and fruitful conversations. Discover how McGranahan Architects’ Birney and Grant design teams learned from and challenged each other, creating a richer, more interesting, and more inclusive design for both schools that we could never have created with either team alone.

Learning Objectives:
  • Examine activities designed to reveal the underlying culture of Birney Elementary and Grant Center for the Expressive Arts through community engagement
  • Discover how designing two elementary schools on the same timeline within one district allowed for both communities to work together to co-create their schools
  • Analyze the influence that cross pollination of ideas, between the communities of two different elementary schools, had on the final design solutions
  • Compare the design of Birney Elementary School and Grant Center for the Expressive Arts against the pedagogical model of each school
Session 1B: Equity and Inclusion: Real Strategies to Support Each Learner
Abby Dacey, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Associate Principal, Mahlum
RachelAuerbach, AIA, LEED AP, Associate, Mahlum
Susan Steinbrenner, Executive Director of Facilities, Evergreen Public Schools

Equity and inclusion are key priorities for school districts in our region. These topics can be difficult to discuss or define, much less incorporate into building design. This session, a condensed version of a community workshop developed with Evergreen Public Schools to inform their $695 million bond program, will help dispel those difficulties. Participants will expand their concept of equity and inclusion to consider behavioral, cognitive, physical, cultural, and social factors. Using real student stories, participants will practice moving from abstract conversations to concrete design strategies. This session will help architects, educators, and facility planners remove barriers to student learning and create buildings that support each learner.

Learning Objectives:
  • Facilitate clear discussions with Districts, facility planners, and their community based on existing District policies on equity and inclusion.
  • Develop a shared vocabulary about equity and inclusion using the framework presented in the workshop.
  • Create aspirational goals for how a building can support equity and inclusion by using real student stories.
  • Define design strategies for equity and inclusion that can be implemented in existing and new schools by responding to the specific goals that the community has developed
Session 1C: "Are you sitting down for this?!" Critical Research Guiding Interior Design in Canada
Sheila Hammond, Principal, Ecole Salish Secondary School, Surrey School District #36
Lennie Scott-Webber, PhD, NCIDQ, AIA, Affiliate Principal, INSYNC: Education Research + Design
Rick Deck, Director of Corporate Servics, Surrey SD
Noah Greenberg, AIA, LEED AP, Principal, DLR Group

In 2017, a large Canadian school district saw a conference presentation on research which caused them to pause and consider a large secondary school project at the last hour. The team’s big picture goals were in motion and construction was almost complete – yet they saw a vision based on this new knowledge and had the courage to stop and change course with their furniture selection and interior design methodology. How often does that happen and how could interiors better support our vision of Next Generation Learning? This story and how it unfolded involves the school district team members (new principal, director of capital projects, and director of procurement) and their partnership with an architecture and interior design firm and research consultant to rethink and thus redesign the experience for the educators and the students. A panel discussion will:
  1. tell the story,
  2. share the process and the research insights guiding that process,
  3. the design outcomes and reflections on timeline implications,
  4. the challenges and lessons learned when working across the border, and
  5. the next steps working towards a Research-Guided Design Principles protocol.

Learning Objectives:
  • Develop an appreciation for how the research shared impacted the decision-making process and established a new vision.
  • Understand the risks taken by the school team’s leadership to change course at the last minute when they saw a new vision impacted by research, and the recognize how the implications at varying steps of the design and construction timeline could impact the final learning environment.
  • Recognize how a fast-paced solutions were identified and executed by a fully integrated team with one goal: to make the learning experience for students and educators fit the realities of a Next Generation Learning Environment.
  • Holistically articulate the impact of interior design, research, and FF&E on teaching and learning in order to facilitate a dialogue that uncovers the unique needs and long-range goals of an educational institution and its stakeholders.
THURSDAY, MAY 9, 2019 | 9:45 AM – 10:45 AM
Seminar 2A: Schools as Community Catalyst
Rebecca Baibak, AIA, NCARB, REFP, LEED AP, Principal, Integrus Architecture
Matt Feldmeyer, RA, Facilities Project Manager – Capital Projects Office, Renton School District No. 403
Brianne Tomlin, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP, Project Architect, Integrus Architecture

As the density in cities grows, so do the needs for civic facilities that serve the population throughout the year. Restrictive sites, needs for year round community spaces, and city’s need to create a cohesive and identifiable urban center. This session will explore how in Renton, Washington (just outside Seattle) the new downtown Sartori Elementary School is serving as a new prototype for school campuses to support high-density development, eliminating the need for a larger project site. In addition, the vertical design creates more open space available to students and the surrounding community for recreational use. It is located in a designated Regional Growth Center, that will collaboratively serve 650 students, combining a community based elementary school with a magnet STEM program. Through a highly collaborative process the functions on the site, and within the facility step in the right direction toward achieving the city’s vision, so that the city center and downtown become “a cohesive, identifiable urban center where people live, work, learn, play and visit.”

Learning Objectives:
  • Understand how a city’s growth plan are symbiotic with development of an urban school.
  • Explore the varying considerations, challenging the status quo, in elementary school design to better support collaborative use of spaces as the lines between a community center and elementary school blur.
  • Explore how schools and communities can create stronger ties through experiential learning curriculum.
  • Develop critical analysis through the evaluation of a real world example where the opportunities and challenges in bringing forward innovative ideas in site design, curriculum, and shared use overlap.
Session 2B: History Can Save Us: Carbon Footprint and the Renovation of Historic Schools
Kristian Kicinski, AIA, WELL AP, LEED AP BD+C, Associate Principal, Bassetti Architects
Jen Sohm Project Design Manager, Portland Public Schools
Katrina Shum Miller, Sustainability Advocate, Lensa Consulting
Joe Echeverri, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Bassetti Architects

View presentation »

The most sustainable building is the one you already have. Learn how Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) data could influence future decisions on reusing historic facilities and how LCA is becoming an important tool in understanding a building’s carbon footprint. As the operational efficiency of our buildings improves, embodied carbon emissions generated during the manufacture and construction process become a much larger portion of the overall footprint. Hear perspectives from facilities managers, architects, and experts in sustainability about the benefits and challenges of adapting historic buildings into centers of 21st century learning.

Learning Objectives:
  • Understand the carbon footprint and environmental impacts of new school construction and the potential impact reductions available through the adaptive reuse of historic school structures.
  • Learn strategies for adapting historic school facilities with traditional classrooms into 21st century learning environments.
  • Understand how the use of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodologies and tools can influence the future planning and design of historic school reuse projects.
  • Identify the potential challenges of reusing historic school structures, and understand strategies for overcoming those challenges.
Seminar 2C: Feeling Safe: Exploring the full Spectrum of Safety and Security in Educational Environments
Dr. Gustavo Balderas, Superintendent, Eugene School District
Rene Berndt, Associate Principal, AIA, LEED AP, Mahlum Architects, Inc
Jeremy Rear ,Associate, AIA, NCARB, Mahlum Architects, Inc

Schools are institutions where minds are nurtured and learners are inspired through discovery. Only if learners feel safe and well are they able to focus on the complex social-emotional, intellectual, and physical development. Parents, educators and learners demand that districts address safety concerns, and the success of a learning environment greatly depends on how well those safety concerns are translated into strategies. What does it mean to “feel safe”? What conditions and events are being considered when we talk about safety? This session will allow school districts to broaden their understanding of concepts relating to safety and security in environmental design. The presenters will begin by introducing a full spectrum of safety and security around EXTERNAL THREATS, INTERNAL THREATS, SELF-HARM, THREATS TO PROPERTY and ENVIRONMENTAL THREATS. The presenters will share aspirations addressing each topic. In small work groups, participants will develop specific strategies around these aspirations. This process will create a common vocabulary and understanding around all aspects of safety. The workshop will conclude with presenters sharing two recently-completed projects, each responding to a different set of safety concerns: Taphòytha’ Hall at Umpqua Community College is the community response to an armed intruder incident with multiple casualties. Roosevelt Middle School in the Eugene School District aims to prevent the occurrence of bullying, vandalism and self-harm in a teenage learning environment.

Learning Objectives:
  • Attendees will be able to describe the full spectrum of safety and security concerns
  • Attendees will be able to discuss aspirations around aspects of safety and security
  • Attendees will be able to develop design strategies that address aspects of safety and security
  • Attendees will be able to implement design strategies that address safety and security
Seminar 3A: Removing barriers and creating bridges to student success through targeted instruction, relational culture and welcoming environment
Miriam Mickelson, Executive Director of Teaching and Learning, Snohomish School District
Shawn Stevenson, Executive Director of Academic Services, Snohomish School District
Dave Sage, Director of Facilities Management and School Safety, Snohomish School District

One size fits all instruction may be efficient for teachers, but it does not address the individual student’s learning needs. Instruction systems structured to meet individual or small group needs based on multi-tiered support systems (MTSS) responds to the student more accurately. MTSS provides student focused or targeted instruction. Along with MTSS, instruction must be sensitive and respond to student learning barriers as a result of trauma the student suffers outside of the school day. Training of instructors to incorporate trauma informed approach is needed to remove barriers and build bridges of success. If students do not feel they are in a safe learning environment, then a barrier has been created to impede student success. Creating an environment where students feel safe to share, be at ease, and be transparent, is not created by school security measures. More importantly, it is the culture, relationships, connections, and cleanliness that removes the barriers to create a safe environment. Lastly, the physical spaces should support the educational program, goals and instructional methodologies and district space and service standards. Examples of how spaces can promote instructional and cultural norms will be provided.

Learning Objectives:
  • Present a brief overview of Multi-Tiered Systems of Support and how its implementation supports the Snohomish School District's academic mission, instructional priorities and values
  • Discuss how trauma-informed practice helps staff members meet the academic and socio-emotional needs of students
  • Identify attributes of positive cultural environments that foster safe schools
  • Provide examples of physical spaces that support MTSS, trauma informed, equity and relational and connected school cultures
Seminar 3B: Intentional by Design: Scalable Equity & Performance
Michael Baranick, Senior Associate, Hargis Engineers
Richard Best, Director, Capital Projects and Planning, Seattle Public Schools
Brian Cawley, Principal, Hargis Engineers

Seattle Public Schools set out on an ambitious endeavor to renovate, modernize or replace 17 schools over a six year period, while carrying out 37 other safety improvement projects across the district as part of the BEX IV program. At this same time, the district was introducing new leadership, responding to a surge in enrollment, implementing a newly adopted Green Building resolution, and grappling with construction escalation costs. So how did they produce seven award-winning schools that celebrated local culture while exceeding performance goals and instilling equity across the capital program?

Learning Objectives:
  • Evaluate a capital program’s objectives, planning tools in place and the input needed from key stakeholders to execute a multi-site, simultaneous deployment plan
  • Compare and contrast local cultural influence on design outcomes
  • Explore how environmental and technological variables can influence energy efficiency outcome
  • Understand how post-occupancy evaluation and corrective measure can impact the building performance
Seminar 3C: The Music Room: K-12 Music Pedagogy and How it Informs Design
Whitney Henion, Capital Projects Lead, Vancouver Public Schools
Greg Henion, Band Director, Camas Public Schools

What to kids “do” in a music class? What are the activities? How is it different at each level (ES, MS, HS) and do they really need all that storage? What’s the difference between band, orchestra and choir rooms at each level of education and how would the room be different for each function? What if they have a specialty program, like mariachi, steel drums, hand drumming or a piano lab? How does the program change the requirements of the room? What questions should you ask the music specialists and how can you interpret their needs. Have you ever had a music teacher tell you that they don’t want the kids’ voices to get lost in the room? How can you get 65 kids into an instrument storage room and back into their seats in 4 minutes? What about the size and shape of each room? What materials will you use on the walls and ceilings? Get into the gritty details of why band rooms need double doors without a mullion, who needs a flat floor, who needs risers and the age old question: carpet or VCT? We will cover what typical music curriculum requires at each grade level and how to design a room that supports those needs. At the end of this session, attendees should have a tool box of questions to ask the specialists and understand the implications of those answers and how they apply to the design and construction of a music facility.

Learning Objectives:
  • Participants will learn about typical music education pedagogy at elementary, middle and high school grades.
  • Participants will learn about typical music education pedagogy for Band, Choir, Orchestra, General Music, Specialty programs and how those will affect the design of the room.
  • Participants will leave with a kit of questions and a dialogue framework to take to their next music and arts client and understand the impacts of those answers
  • Participants will understand the implications of music programs within K-12 educational facilities.
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LearningSCAPES 2019


October 3-6, 2019
Hyatt Regency Orange County
Anaheim, CA