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School District Master Planning

Comprehensive master planning of educational facilities must provide an objective district-wide tool for educationally appropriate capital resource management. A master plan must properly assess present and future trends in learning as they apply efficiently and effectively to all facilities in a school district.

Comprehensive district-wide master planning also becomes a fundamental first step in building community support and successfully passing a bond referendum. A master plan must be logical to the average citizen, educationally inspiring, architecturally practical, futuristically flexible, and accomplishable within a realistic budget. FH&A is experienced and successful in all of these elements of a successful master plan.

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Individual School Master Planning

An individual school specific master plan should precede any proposed design and construction project. Too often, a master plan simply consists of identifying currently perceived unmet needs for classrooms, storage, or community use facilities. This is a short-sighted perspective of building resource management.

An individual school master plan should thoroughly consider enrollments, current educational methods, trends for program delivery into the future, and the most efficient and effective use of all current educational spaces. Only then can a properly balanced long term solution be identified and applied to the entire facility. Such an approach is often more cost effective and can be phased in a manner that is much more affordable and sensible to the community and staff.

A building master plan can be simple and quick to complete in the short term, while ultimately saving time and money in the long term. Knowing your options from an objective outside perspective is not always easy to accept, but results in much more informed decision-making by all concerned.

Proper participation in the process by staff and community keeps the vision in the forefront and avoids room-by-room personalized decision-making that can miss the “big picture”, a common problem of starting design too early and without forethought.

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Educational Specifications

Often considered a pre-design document by architects required for a building design, a complete educational specification should begin and end with a full understanding of curriculum, technology, scheduling, enrollments, and the psychology of learning.   An educational specification must accurately include:

  • Educational vision statement
  • Summary list and size of all spaces
  • Detailed functional relationship diagrams
  • Complete building-wide summary
  • Preliminary cost estimates

Dr. Hill has graduate degrees in both education and design to make this document more practical, functional, and educationally focused throughout.

Educational specifications can be as detailed as needed, or focused to address the most complex areas, such as small learning communities, science laboratories, technology education/careers, or seamless technology use. Always, such analysis should begin with educational delivery and move to functional design. This approach builds upon what educators are already doing well, and not just adopting trendy, but short lived design solutions.

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Community Involvement Workshops – Building Consensus

Successful community involvement is essential to understanding options and making appropriate decisions at all levels of the organizational structure – citizens, staff, and administration.

Based on a thorough understanding of local culture and programs, Franklin Hill & Associates will customize a specific local community workshop process that is very successful in establishing community support. This requires an understanding of education first, and then practical and efficient facility utilization.

FH&A involvement has been influential to numerous successful national bond referendum programs.

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Bond Referendum Marketing

During these challenging economic times, passing a successful bond referendum can be very difficult. FH&A has been very successful in assessing educational needs and presenting solutions in a manner that is logical, practical, and educationally valid. Dr. Hill understands the psychology of change and learning as well as the practical options available during these difficult economic times.

Franklin Hill & Associates has a tremendous track record in posturing school districts successfully for all forms of financial support by the community.

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