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Planning tomorrow's learning environment...


FH&A HISTORY ... 25 Years of Futurism

Some think a “Futurist” is some kind of a psychic. Not true!

“A futurist is a person who sees the PRESENT very clearly, and can effectively project it forward in deeds and actions.”

Successful “Futurism” MUST answer the following questions:

  • What is the current situation?
  • Does the trend really improve learning in the proposed circumstance?
  • Will the trend last?
  • Is the trend right for the intended community?
  • Will staff adopt it successfully and with vigor?
  • Does it make economic sense?
  • Is the resultant design solution practical & flexible?

Each “futuristic” recommendation must be tested against whether the trend will continue and whether it will be embraced successfully by others.

We believe our predictions have been accurate, practical, and are still used today!

The Largest School in the World

Adapting Autism Pedagogy for ALL Students - Kuwait Special Needs School, Kuwait City

Educational futurist and facility planner for the world’s larges special needs educational complex for the Ministry of Education, Kuwait.

All students are special, and the fundamental demands essential to autism learning can and should be beneficially applicable and applied to all student learning and school environments.

Successful planning for the future must be based on a legitimate understanding of existing circumstances and educational trends.  Then, appropriate trends must be conceptualized in practical designs that will be successful in new or remodeled schools.

Mitigate the “Brain Drain” in Ghana, Africa | Presentation to the World Bank

Education is about people and social systems.  Sometimes the building is irrelevant!

This presentation to a World Bank conference in Ghana, Africa required seeing the opportunities to structure social change and thus reducing the “brain drain” through a unique combination of factors: enhanced domestic/migratory educational understanding, considering student financial incentives to remain in country, understanding the fundamental social systems of the village and individual family structure, and utilization of distance learning technologies.

Planning for educational future trends in developing countries requires a practical knowledge of education placed within the context of regional economic and social conditions.  This is the ultimate responsibility of the global educational futurist and planner.

Planning for “New Urbanism” after Hurricane Katrina - Louisiana

Our schools are part of a larger community. 

As an urban planner, Hill’s work on a middle/high school project in Lafayette Louisiana became part of the Sugar Mill Pond community and will share facilities with the residential community and support stability of real estate values.

When planning for the future, each incremental step must be tested against whether the trend continues and whether the idea will be successfully employed by others.

Health Care Training: The emerging international workforce

Health care worker shortages are impacting the world.  The US alone has a 1,600,000 nurse shortfall.

FHA assisted in planning future training facilities for thousands of foreign nurses to ultimately supplement international medical profession demands.  Countries included the Philippines and Ghana.

Facility planning focused on unique cultural elements that impact learning style, modality, and technology use.

Science Laboratory Design Impacts Cognitive Learning & Student Performance

Dr. Hill researched science laboratory designs and suggests that student grades may be negatively impacted by where the student sits.  This research further correlates the relationship between design, learning, and educational equity.

Design Impacts on Cognitive Learning - Legal Questions of Equity

Hill completes multi-year research on the Impact of Design on Cognitive Learning, which reveals that students may seriously misinterpret information because of the design of the learning environment.

Brookfield Zoo Immersion K-12 School Chicago, Illinois.

On-site zoo school links with adjacent habitats and Florida based Mote Marine Dolphin Institute.  Unique planning for multi-screen and multi-media learning in science laboratory facilities will allow integration of data management, social studies, distance learning, wireless data collection devices, and local business partnerships.

ENLOE “Magnet High School of America” Site Planning Impact on Achievement

The site Master Plan for the Enloe “Magnet High School of America” in Raleigh suggests a correlation between student performance and the over-all building design and site master plan.

Low achieving students and gifted students appear to receive reduced educational opportunity because of the building design – “The Learning GAP”. 

The Master Plan solution addresses and solved this problem.

Community Planning for Children – Enrenco Station, Oregon

Schools are planned to meet the needs of the children and the community. 

FH&A reversed the question during his planning of the Enrenco Station community in Oregon.  Hill asked, “How can the community itself be planned to better meet the emerging 21 Century needs of children?”

This question turned the planning process on its ear to create “small living communities” for children, within the larger emerging urban/suburban community.

Public Private Partnership Schools – Canada
Burnaby Secondary School, Vancouver

FH&A planned Canada’s first Public Private Partnership schools (P-3) and totally restructured capital construction financing. This school was planned with IBM/BC Tel in Vancouver, B.C.  Design Architects:  Hotson Bakker Architects and Cornerstone Architects of Vancouver.

The “Learning Atrium” creates small learning community for career education | Copper Hills High Schools, Utah MHTN Architects

“Small Learning Communities” create a framework for learning, beyond general classrooms.  These high schools incorporated the first Learning Atrium for small business partnerships, technology education programs, and as a district-wide resource for middle and elementary students.  Projects were coordinated with the Kennecott Mine.

Copper Hills High Schools, Utah - MHTN Architects

Disney Celebration School creates “Small Learning Communities”

FH & A provided exclusive educational facility planning for the Disney Celebration School working with national experts:

  • David Johnson, Ph.D.
  • Robert Johnson, Ph.D.
  • Robert Slavens, Ph.D.
  • Bill Glasser, Ph.D.
  • Howard Gardner, PhD
  • Florida League of Teachers

This project creates the first “Small Schools” model for integrated learning neighborhoods. 

Hill integrates the school and campus plan into the Celebration community in coordination with Robert Stern, the project urban planner.

Design architect: William Rohn Architects, Boston.

Large Screen Science Projection Video & Lab Station Computers

Snoqualmie Valley’s Mt. Si High School was the nation’s first high school planned for large screen projection video technology in a science laboratory.  Computers are also networked to lab stations and also project information on the large screen.  This unique application is accomplished in a remodeled science laboratory and was funded through grants provided by the Weyerhaeuser Timber Company.

Creating  Schools as  “Learning Tools” 

Emerging technologies, particularly in the use of science based peripherals, allows students to measure information around the school itself.  Creative thinking in ceiling heights, plumbing, solar panels, and natural ventilation can make the school into a “Learning Tool”.

Nation’s First Futuristic High School planned with Corporate Involvement – Dr. Phillips High School, Orlando, Florida

Hill plans the first corporate partnership 21st century school in North American with assistance from:

  • Disney World
  • Sea World
  • NASA
  • General Electric
  • PBS Broadcasting
  • Florida Solar Energy Center

Dr. Phillips HS was initially planned to connect to the NASA shuttle Challenger, and for robotics and technology education to replace vocational education programs.

Dr. Philip’s High School became the most visited high school ever built in North America.

Hill was VP for Educational Planning with PDR Architects of Orlando, Florida.

Wind Tunneled Tested School, Florida Solar Energy Center

To meet energy conservation demands of the 1970’s and 80’s, Hill planned the Dr. Phillips High School which was wind-tunneled tested by the Florida Solar Energy Center to improve natural ventilation and conserve electricity. 

Over-head roof were re-designed to promote naturally drafted air through adjacent general classrooms in a unique energy conservation effort.

Design Award – Computers in Remodeled Classrooms

While computer labs were all the rage, American School & University awarded Dr. Hill the first citation for school design concepts that placed computers in remodeled general classrooms to provide immediate and integrated access to information technology within the core curriculum.

Nation’s First Lease Purchased Design/Built School Facility – Changes School Funding

Franklin Hill, as Director of Facilities Fiscal Planning for Duval County Schools in Jacksonville, Florida, helped manage the nation’s first lease-purchased design-build district administrative facility. This unique funding system became an early model in non-profit third-party financing, coordinated state financing, and long term lease purchase financing of public buildings.  It was later reflected in Hill’s work on Public Private Partnership (P-3) schools in Burnaby and Nova Scotia, Canada in 1987.

“Moth Balling Schools”

Due to declining enrollments, many school districts were selling downtown urban properties.  Franklin Hill authored a CEFPI article which discouraged selling of urban properties in favor of “Moth Balling” them for use years later.  Hill correctly predicted that urban centers would revitalize in the future; and districts would not be able to afford the escalating land costs.

For more information about our services and experience, contact us at (425) 466-5754.