Campostella K-8 School


The new Southside STEM Academy at Campostella is a 1147 student, one to three story, K-8 school located on the previous site of Campostella Elementary School. The building consists of a three-story academic wing, a two-story area with the Administration on the first floor and Media Center above, and a one-story wing consisting of a Cafeteria, K-5 Gym, Art Classrooms, Nature Classroom, Music classrooms, Main Gymnasium, Locker Rooms, Heath classrooms, Kitchen and service rooms.

The design of the new school is organized around the STEM school concept and is broken down into three grade levels on each floor, with Grades 6-8 occupying the top floor of the Academic Wing. Each grade level is broken down again into a house consisting of learning studios, flexible classrooms, small group breakout spaces, STEM activity area, prep rooms, storage rooms, and teacher workrooms.

The STEM approach allows students to stay within their house for a majority of the school day and minimizes the need for other grade levels to circulate through the grade level house. This approach allows the students of each grade to enjoy a more collaborative learning process by taking advantage of all available space in their respective grade level houses. Additionally, this approach provides students, teachers and administration with the familiarity that is enjoyed in a smaller school setting.

The one story exploratory wing contains academic programs that are common to all grade levels and therefore need to be easily accessible by all grades. This wing contains such classes as Art, Music, Nature, Health, Physical Education, as well as the Cafeteria/K-5 Gym space. A Lecture Hall is located next to the main entrance, off the main gathering lobby. This location allows the space to easily be used after hours for public functions. The Media Center is centrally located to promote student use and is also located on the second floor, at the top of the monumental stairs, for possible public use after hours. The Main Gymnasium will seat approximately 250 when the bleachers are in the open position. A K-5 Gymnasium is provided as an additional teaching station for younger students and for other sporting events. A Nature classroom has been provided as a part of the K-8 STEM program. The room has an exterior door to access the wetlands nearby on the site. This classroom is designed to connect the interior school with the outdoor learning space the site provides. The Technology package provides for a state-of-the-art facility.

The building infrastructure supports both wireless and hardwire applications. All classrooms are designed to operate in a wireless network environment. In addition, each educational space is equipped with an LCD projector and interactive whiteboard. Classrooms include windows designed for providing daylight into the classrooms. The introduction of natural reflected light into the classrooms, while improving the academic experience, will also reduce building energy costs by reducing the need for artificial lighting during primary daytime use.

Norfolk Public Schools

Norfolk, VA

In Association with RRMM Architects