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Sun Prairie Area School District – Elementary Schools

Create two new elementary schools at the same time where learning occurs naturally + at any place inside or outside the schools

Due to continued community growth, the District’s existing elementary schools had reached capacity and it was determined that two new elementary schools at the same time were needed for anticipated continued enrollment growth. Identically designed, the schools are two miles apart and have different color palettes to support their individual brands. 

The learning environments are configured into eight-room “ecosystems” to accommodate multiple grade levels. Each ecosystem has its own theme and includes classrooms, small group rooms, learning alcoves, a makerspace and a shared classroom library within its central collaboration area. Also included are areas for staff collaboration and student services, as well as restrooms, lockers and storage areas.

The schools were designed around four drivers – Learning is Central, Diversity, Authentic Engagement and Leaders of Innovation – and resulted in highly flexible environments where learning can happen anywhere. Movable walls allow for co-teaching and expanding the classroom, and the furniture design supports different needs and learning styles, allowing teachers to transform their spaces to fit their students’ needs.

The schools utilize 75% less energy than a typical elementary school due to geothermal heating and cooling systems, LED use as well as solar panels. Participating in the Focus on Energy's Design Assistance program while building the schools, the District received an incentive payment of more than $350,000 form Focus on Energy and Sun Prairie Utilities.