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Re-Imagining School Design: Adaptation & Transformation of Healthy Learning Environments

April 9, 2021 @ 9:00 am - April 30, 2021 @ 12:00 pm

$40 – $200

AIANYS in collaboration with NYS School Facilities Association presents a four-part webinar series addressing key areas of adapting and transforming school design by examining past and present design best practices and explore ways to leverage existing or new buildings to create healthy learning environments.

The series will discuss how to elevate the role of design in the creation of these environments through innovative best practices and science-based metrics. The program was set in motion to heighten awareness and focus on adapting design, build, renovation and transform schools for the betterment of its users and the community.

Target Audience: Architects, Facilities Directors, Contractors, Engineers, School Administrators (superintendents, principals, teachers, business officials, school board members)

Registration Fees

AIA Member: $40/person/webinar or $125/person for entire series
Non-Member: $65/person/webinar or $200/person for entire series

Continuing Education Credit Each webinar will be submitted for 3 LU/HSW’s.


Learn More about the Series


Part 1: Creating a Healthy Environment-Best Practices on Improving Air Quality, Light and Wellness

Part 2: Design Structure-What Will Schools Look Like?

Part 3: School Safety-Looking Beyond the Hardware

Part 4: Where Do We Go from Here?


Part 1: Creating a Healthy Environment-Best Practices on Improving Air Quality, Light and Wellness

April 9 – 9:00am-12:00pm

A. Global Perspective on Environmental and Spatial Design Best Practices (9:00am-10:30am)
Based on their collective, actual experience and research, Christine Bruckner, FAIA, and Greg James, PhD, will share their expertise in sustainability and wellness in design. They will also discuss the value of using building energy modeling and simulation to improve air quality and energy conservation in projects. Participants will be encouraged to share their solutions, experiences, and successes.

Moderator: Illya Azaroff, FAIA, AIANYS President

• Dr. Christine Bruckner, FAIA, Director, M Mosher Associates
• Gregory James, PhD, CEA, Associate/Project Manager, Jaros, Baum & Bolles

B. Local Perspective: What Does the Day-to-Day Operation Look Like (10:30am-12:00pm)

Our program panelists will discuss the current and future implementation efforts based on the experiences of the recent pandemic. Participants will share and discuss their ideas on how to move forward. A three-legged stool analogy of dealing with scheduling, technology and space will be used to focus the discussion on what districts are facing currently and in the future.

Moderator: Illya Azaroff, FAIA, AIANYS President

Program Panel:
• Tom Ferrara, PE, Director of Facilities III, Syracuse City School District
• Tom Ritzenthaler, AIA, Vice President, CSArch
• Ann Rolland, FAIA, Partner, fx collaborative
• Christopher Gray, Project Executive, Turner Construction

Learning Objectives:
1. Explain what research and solutions in the global realm lend themselves to safe school design.
2. Describe best practices used in Japan and other countries that could work for disease control in school design.
3. Assess and adapt the suggested solutions to day-to-day problems to modify and upgrade future or current school designs.
4. Analyze how schedule, technology and space can affect a school districts during the pandemic.


Part 2: Design Structure-What Will Schools Look Like?

April 16 – 9:00am-12:00pm

Kelly Hayes McAlonie, FAIA, will facilitate the panel in an exploration of what schools will look like in the post-pandemic world and beyond. The discussion will begin with a brief historical perspective and a look at the future of school design.

The particular focus will be on the enhancement of the learning environment using learner-centered design and how to develop a collaborative approach involving educators, architects, teachers, facilities directors, and other stakeholders. Further discussions will include the importance of heating and cooling, natural light and ventilation, how best address code and compliance issues now and in the future and identifying technology best practices and how to best integrate them into the design.

Moderator: Kelly Hayes McAlonie, FAIA, Director of Campus Planning, University at Buffalo

Program Panel:
• Sarah Dirsa, AIA, Principal, KG+D Architects
• James Drew, AIA, Health & Safety Coordinator, TST BOCES
• Dr. Oliver Robinson, Superintendent, Shenendehowa CSD
• Tom Rauscher, President, Archi-Technology, LLC
• Paul McDonnell, AIA, Vice President of Education, AIANYS
• R. Jeffrey Straub, AIA, Principal | Studio Director, Crabtree, Rohrbaugh & Associates & AIAPA School Construction Subcommittee Chair

Learning Objectives:
1. Enhance the learning environment needed in schools today.
2. Create inclusive and accessible schools, that are meeting student’s needs and supporting a safe environment.
3. Evaluate what code and funding issues need to be addressed in effective, healthy, and safe design strategies.
4. Describe what technology’s role in what schools look like, what new technology is coming down the line, and how it will affect the health, safety, and welfare of schools.


Part 3: School Safety-Looking Beyond the Hardware>

April 23 – 9:00am-12:00pm

Hardware and technology utilized by schools joined with design are necessary to maintain a safe educational environment. Our panel of experts will focus on design solutions to evaluate what is happening now and holistically plan space to ensure safety moving forward. They will demonstrate how architects, school administrators, facilities directors and law enforcement can best work together to create a sense of belonging and emotional security for students.

Moderator: Tom Czyz, CEO/Founder, Armoured One

Program Panel:
• Craig A. Vedder, Technical Sergeant, Project Coordinator, School and Community Outreach Unit, NYS Trooper
• Kevin Eberle, EdD, Principal, Buffalo Public Schools
• Andrew Petsche, PhD, NYS Licensed Psychologist and NYS Certified School Psychologist
• Kirk Narburgh, FAIA, CEO/Managing Partner, King + King Architects
• Carl Thurnau, PE, Director of Facilities, City School of New Rochelle

Learning Objectives:
1. Illustrate design solutions for holistic spaces and elevation of school design.
2. Develop communications and plans on how architects, school administrators, facilities directors and law enforcement can work as a team to create safe spaces and environments for students and the community.
3. Apply recommendations from experts to assist students with their mental health through the spaces created in schools.
4. Describe ways to retrofit existing spaces to support health, safety, and welfare in schools.


Part 4: Where Do We Go from Here?

April 30 – 9:00am-12:00pm

Building off Parts 1, 2 & 3 of the Re-Imagining School Design series as the centerpiece for this discussion, the panel will have an open dialogue on the successes achieved by the group. It will examine the increased importance of school facilities in the community and how to best maintain the buildings effectively.

Moderator: Paul McDonnell, AIA, AIANYS Vice President of Education

Program Panel:
• Michael Nieminen, FAIA, Partner, Kliment Halsband Architects & Chair of AIA Committee on Architecture for Education
• Matt Erwin, Director of Facilities, North Syracuse CSD
• Russ Davidson, FAIA, President, KG+D Architects

Learning Objectives:
1. Discuss major takeaways from parts 1 through 3 on how to keep schools safe for students and the community.
2. Explain how NYS legislation impacts the health, safety, and welfare of buildings.
3. Identify how the increased use of school buildings in a community affect the maintenance of those buildings.
4. Explain how the community impacts the elements of designing and retrofitting buildings.




April 9, 2021 @ 9:00 am
April 30, 2021 @ 12:00 pm
$40 – $200
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