Rudolph Gordon School (K-8), Greenville County Schools
Greenville County Schools converted Rudolph Gordon Elementary School into a K-8 facility and dramatically expanded capacity to 1,600 students, an increase of 750 seats. The district’s project-based learning environment with an emphasis on teamwork, group projects, and workforce technology was the design inspiration.
A new, two-story building with a secure glass entry connects two academic wings. A 12,000 SF addition to the early education through kindergarten wing created space for kindergarten through fourth graders. The new 140,000 SF building houses fifth through eighth graders.
To maximize the project-based capabilities of the curriculum, pods of six classrooms are in each of the four grade areas. Operable petitions allow the space to open up around a shared workspace for group projects. The central commons area allows for instruction, for small and large groups, break-out study spaces, with soft flexible seating. Each pod has two manufacturing labs that provides students access to equipment similar to that found in the region’s numerous advanced manufacturing businesses, including 3D printers, worktables, compressed air hoses, and exhaust fans. Roll-up style garage doors allow manufacturers to drive equipment in and out of the labs as needed.
A secure courtyard is located between the academic wings. The outdoor space provides areas for gathering and instruction.
Athletic facilities include a football/soccer field with a track, tennis courts, a baseball field, and a softball field. Reconfigured drives created separate drop-off loops for the lower and upper grades as well as a bus loop.
Extensive use of glass throughout Rudolph Gordon School creates transparency and the modern aesthetic desired by the district. Cutting edge technology is integrated throughout the learning communities, including teacher and administrative support spaces.