Editor's Note (The View From Here)

New Schools, Old Schools, Safe Schools

GROUNDBREAKING NEWS

As I was working on the News & Views section of this issue, I noticed that I had about nine press releases or articles about groundbreaking ceremonies for PK-12 facilities. (In fact, two more came in while I was finishing this column.) Unfortunately, we did not have enough space to publish every one of them. My point is this: If my memory serves me correctly, it has been nearly 10 years since I have had the problem of not enough space to publish news about project starts. Is this an indication of an increase in school construction projects or simply a coincidence that all of the groundbreaking news came in the same few weeks this year? Let’s hope it is the former and not the latter.

Taking Care of What We Have — The U.S. Department of Education estimates that the average school building in our country is 44 years old. Our cover story focuses on one of those schools, and how, through a modernization project, the facility has not only been brought up to 21stcentury standards, but it now has an extended lifespan of 30 to 50 years and the revitalization of the school has renewed the spirit of its community.

The Education Budget — In this month’s Washington Update column, Fritz Edelstein provides details and some clarification concerning education and related funding in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2017. This column is a very abbreviated version of his Washington Update that ran in our Facilities & Design Newsletter a couple of weeks ago. You can access that version on our website, webSPM.com.

Safe & Secure — The special section in this issue focuses on keeping our schools safe and secure. Mike Dorn writes about how building design and the use of smart technology can help prevent instances of sexual abuse and molestation. The second article in the section, written by two architects from Bailey Edwards, give examples of how they used design elements, during a facility conversion, to create a more secure environment.

A Reminder — Our next issue is dated July/August, so you won’t receive another issue of School Planning & Management until August.

Enjoy your summer.

This article originally appeared in the June 2017 issue of School Planning & Management.

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Has interest in sustainability initiatives—from alternative energy and water conservation to “green” landscaping, recycling, fossil-fuel divestment, local sourcing, and more—waned in your district?


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