Catering to co-educational students from Reception through Grade 6, dwp’s design of St John the Baptist Catholic Primary School saw the creation of a learning environment that promotes connection and joy.
The existing school was renovated and extended, with the works to be delivered in stages. The first stage saw an existing two-story building reinvigorated, with the integration of color inside and out disrupting the streetscape.
The angular form of the building channels the parish church, with nature referenced through the implementation of perforated metal balustrades, color selections, oriented strand board detailing and signage. The tree patterns on the balcony railing provide shade on the ground floor.
The outdoor spaces are imagined as a series of formal and informal learning spaces, with ever-changing aluminum fins resembling tree trunks and oversized downspouts creating interest. Outdoor seating allows for outdoor classes and social activities.
A new breakout space has been created that connects nine classrooms and encourages creativity. Learning pods and reading nooks provide students with places to study or a sanctuary depending on their preference. A teaching kitchen, additional classrooms, a gym and relaxation areas have all been reserved for later stages.
Materials have been selected with durability in mind, with louvered windows and sliding glass doors allowing for cross ventilation. The south-facing clerestory windows ensure that the classrooms are filled with natural light.