Littlestown Area School District wanted to bolster their central campus by providing shared resources through a new combined secondary school. They also wanted to expand early childhood education programming. By upgrading facilities to be equitable for all, the District hoped to prepare students for life in the 21st century. A district wide feasibility study was the first step towards realizing their objectives. It also provided a firm plan for moving forward.
District Wide Feasibility Study
The feasibility study assessed the District’s school buildings: one elementary school, one middle school, and one high school. The facilities evaluated a total of 440,000+ SF on over 114 acres of property and serve approximately 2,200 students. The assessment indicated that the middle school required numerous improvements to meet current facility and educational needs. The evaluation also revealed that the high school had additional capacity available for curriculum use but needed renovations typical for a building of its age.
Starting the Process with Community Involvement
From the outset, the Design Team and School District directly engaged the Littlestown community as a part of the feasibility study. A community survey, focus group sessions and staff discussions aided information gathering. Enrollment projection analysis, building capacity evaluation, assessment of the existing facilities, and Steering Committee input in addition to the community feedback were used in compiling the study.
From Feasibility Study to Long-Range Plans
Seven options developed for District review included a mix of architectural scenarios:
- combined middle school / high school
- new middle school built next to high school
- new high school with middle school moving to the existing high school
After reviewing study results and further discussion, the District implemented a long-range plan for updating the facilities. The plan includes additions and renovations to the existing high school building to create a new secondary school. Once the secondary school updates are complete, the middle school building will be used in a different capacity. The feasibility study also presented options for its use. The plan also includes direction for upgrades to athletic facilities, the central maintenance building and the mechanical systems at the District’s elementary school.