Expansion of this small regional school into a middle-high school produced a better educational model at a more cost effective price.
- Students 560
- Grades 6-12
- Size 126,000 ft2
When the district’s 6th grade students were relocated from the two elementary schools into the new Tahanto Regional Middle/High School, it allowed for a true middle school pedagogy, affording more co-curricular spaces than would have been possible in separate small schools, but necessitated a design that separates younger and older students. To accomplish this the building has two entrances and separate middle and high school wings connected to a Main Street along which shared facilities are arranged. Glass walls in the central dining commons and at other points on the Street open to the exterior, while the use of natural, warm materials both inside and out reflect the Central Massachusetts school’s rural setting.
The new school responds gracefully to its heavily forested, environmentally sensitive site on the Wachusetts Reservoir, the second largest body of water in Massachusetts. The school’s design achieves Collaborative for High Performance Schools (MA-CHPS) certification and is sited to optimize views, incorporate extensive daylighting throughout, as well as solar screens, solar shading, and clerestory windows.