Carver Elementary School

Replacing two academic buildings lacking a distinct organizational concept, the new Carver Elementary School design transforms the site into a campus with an energy-efficient building connected to community space, playscapes, and outdoor learning environments.


Carver, MA


112,350 sf


PK – 5




NE-CHPS verified

Energy Use Reduction

29% from baseline code

“I really was blown away at the inventiveness that was brought into the school, the out-of-the-box thinking. This school is a tremendous learning environment for the students.”

Ron Clarke | Former Member, Carver Board of Selectmen

To maintain a small-school feel and support the community’s educational philosophy—keeping grade levels clustered together—grades PK-2 occupy the first floor of three academic wings, and grades 3-5 are housed on the second floor. A vibrant central circulation spine that doubles as a learning commons connects the three academic wings, forming the school’s “E-shaped” massing.

Designed to accommodate the school’s Response to Intervention program, the spine contains small group rooms—which educators use throughout the day to teach specific skills—as well as teacher workspaces, support areas, story nooks, whole grade gathering areas, and public core spaces. Project areas located at the threshold of each academic wing provide grade-level flexible space for collaborative, hands-on project work.

“Interiors are modern and clean while still providing appropriate furnishings and color palettes for elementary school age students.”

Jury Comments | Learning By Design

Commitment to Sustainability

The high-performance, NE-CHPS verified school includes numerous sustainable design strategies. A wide range of outdoor learning and play environments; flooring made from natural, durable materials; an air quality system that utilizes tempered air as a more energy-efficient alternative to air conditioning; triple-glazed windows; and an extensive stormwater infiltration system all contribute to the school’s holistic sustainable design.

  • Citation of Excellence, Learning By Design Spring Educational Facilities Design Awards, 2019
  • Outstanding Design, American School & University Architectural Portfolio Awards, 2020
  • Photography, Ed Wonsek