Jacksonville Middle School, Jacksonville SD #117

Jacksonville, IL

The school’s goal is to support the individual learner and enable every student to succeed. The building is designed to support student development by enabling multiple learning styles, dynamic teaching methods, social development, and student wellness in a safe and comfortable environment that will support current and future technologies. 

The community commons, at the heart of the building opens into the auditorium for community theater groups and can be separated from the academic wings as desired. A new gymnasium addition with adjacent fitness center and health lab will also be easily accessible to the public. Elements such as day-lighting, color, and materials are designed to stimulate the learner based on research and evidence for success. Current students were also encouraged to be a part of the design process.

The facility will acknowledge the history of the school district and incorporate key aspects into the building design, primarily with environmental graphics. The new design will transform an unused courtyard into an integral, outdoor learning space. The site will also undergo a major shift in vehicle and pedestrian traffic patterns to increase safety and security on site. Current entrances to the 14 acre site will be moved. Parent drop off areas will be separated from bus traffic and access to the main entrance will be more clear and visible. 

The budget required the selection of materials, systems, and site improvements to be balanced with sustainability, durability, and operational goals. Since energy efficient design is important to the fiscal health of the district, energy and resource conservation measures are integral to the design.