From the Resene News – issue 2/2009
Research rewards - Taihape Area School
The school caters for junior, middle and senior school students, with four classrooms accommodating each of the junior and middle school students and two storeyed space for the senior school students. The heart of the school is the Learning Street, which is a covered hub and atrium that links the three sections of the school and the administration block so that regardless of what Mother Nature has in mind, transitions between all areas are safe and dry from the weather.
The exterior of the new buildings are finished in Environmental Choice approved Resene Sonyx 101 waterborne semi-gloss tinted to Resene New Denim Blue (charcoal blue) and Resene Spanish White (complex neutral) with features of striking Resene Rhapsody (tan terracotta), an uplifting hue particularly on chilly winter mornings. Inside Resene Aquaclear clear waterborne urethane brings out the best in the timber finishes while protecting them from the everyday wear and tear of school life.
The greater site also incorporates sporting facilities of tennis, netball and basketball courts, soccer and hockey fields and shaded junior playgrounds. Indoors, a multi-purpose facility with an international standard timber sprung sports floor provides for netball, basketball, volleyball, badminton, tennis and gymnastics combined with an adjoining weights room. The stage features a 130 seat retractable stand for viewing games on the sports floor. The facility also doubles as a school and community meeting and production showcase space with seating capacity of 900.
The new concept follows extensive research in 2006 that identified four issues at Taihape Area School: low achievement, divided community, lack of Maori parent and community involvement and lack of curriculum depth. A review of facilities, services and structure has seen changes in leadership, teaching, opportunities for personalised learning, a broader range of learning options, improved relationships with the community and the development of the new high tech purpose built school. While the changes were not without cost, with the building development alone costing an estimated $18.5 million, the investment in the students and their future was considered critical to prepare the school and the students for future success.
Architect: Proarch Architects
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