About the project
North Shore State School is a model school designed to actively facilitate the experience of community, inclusivity and provide varied modes of learning.
The North Shore State School vision guided our master planning and building design approach:
At North Shore State School community, we aspire to build an inclusive and supportive learning environment in which students, develop, learn and achieve the necessary skills and knowledge to positively and effectively contribute to the world in which they live.
“Conrad Gargett are iconic. They are very good at what they do, with a broad base of knowledge, in particular, with large scale community works and public commercial spaces. I have confidence in their ability to meet crazy timelines, willingness to tolerate our often and frequent changes, be client focused, good listeners, challenge the norm, and come up with smart innovative design solutions. I always felt that nothing was going to be too big a challenge for them.”
—Chris Jones, Portfolio Delivery,
Infrastructure Services Branch, Department of Education
North Shore State School is located on a greenfield site within Stockland’s North Shore Development. With connections to the surrounding residential precinct, safe pedestrian and bicycle movement is facilitated by access routes that are separated from vehicle movements. To accommodate expected growth, future expansion is considered for modular buildings and zones are preserved for a future Kindergarten and potential community facilities.
This single campus primary school provides education for students prep – grade six. The cohorts are arranged in two sub-school structures and learning precincts on the site; the junior school: prep – grade three and senior school: grade four – six. At the heart of the school is the ‘Great Court’, a generous landscaped space connecting the two precincts, providing play and outdoor learning areas that encourage interaction between the junior and senior schools.
The learning precincts are supported by a hierarchy of spaces that transition from public to private. The administration, information services and public facilities are located at the front and centre of the school aimed to provide opportunities for the school and broader community to meet.
Within each learning precinct are learning villages, designed to group each year level cohort around a central shared learning space. These villages include of flexible General Learning Areas (GLAs) that promote varied, safe and inviting learning environments.
A village design concept has guided the master planning of the GLAs. Teachers are empowered with flexible configurations that can cater for up to eight classes working together, indoors or outdoors in a weather protected environment. All GLAs have the ability to maintain a single room learning environment or convert to a dual learning space via an operable wall. Additionally, through large folding doors, these GLAs connect with the central practical learning space.
“Conrad Gargett has definitely broken the mould of our standard General Learning Area layout, an open but securable environment; the central green area is very inviting.”
—Deborah Ryder, Project Briefing and Business Case Development, Infrastructure Services Branch, Department of Education
A total of four learning villages are arranged along a spine running the length of the campus creating a ‘learning lane’. The connections between each village are designed to facilitate learning opportunities between year level cohorts. Building detailing, varied material textures and coloured wayfinding are positioned and considered to connect and enhance the student experience.
Inclusive pedagogy is at the forefront of design for each learning village; access, technology and the needs of diverse learners is addressed. In line with current best practice, quiet rooms are included in each village; a space where students can retreat when required.
Cooperative partnerships and allied specialist services such as speech pathology and occupational therapy, for example, are integrated into the building administration space, further establishing the school as a community hub of education and development excellence.
Supporting a social and collegiate workplace, each village provides staff with student free spaces and facilitates the highest quality learning experiences with staff and student amenities, kitchen preparation areas, staff collaboration, staffrooms, designated student eating areas and central community learning areas.
“The North Shore State School community has benefited from the amazing design and layout provided to us by Conrad Gargett that directly reflects the needs of Education in North Queensland. The village design concept allows for the integration of classes in the same year level in a safe and inviting learning environment. North Shore State School is privileged to be the recipient of this unique, creative and innovative design.”
—Patrick McDonnell, Principal, North Shore State School
- Location, orientation and building designs optimise environmental advantages; reducing heat gains and losses through passive design principles
- Incorporates energy efficient technologies for services and equipment
- Considers the indoor environment for staff and student health wellbeing optimising the learning experience
- Incorporates water saving, harvesting and recycling systems
- Connects the role of the school and its environmental landscape as an educational learning resource
- The oval has been located to the east and landscaped zones to east-west to capture cooling breezes through the site
- Brick veneer construction offers an improved energy performance
- Pre-finished, robust materials mitigate maintenance and associated costs