Hazleton Area School District Case Study


Hazleton Area School District Partners with School Specialty® for Design and Furnishing of Flexible Learning Spaces

If the previous few years have taught us something, it’s that the times of delivering a “one-size-fits-all” training are lengthy gone. Every little one has distinctive studying wants, and fashionable studying environments have to be versatile and adaptable sufficient to assist these varied educational and social-emotional necessities.

“These days, we have to offer many different options to meet the needs of our students,” says Dr. Patrick Patte, Assistant to the Superintendent of Schools for the Hazleton Area School District, a rural public college system in central Pennsylvania.

Hazleton is without doubt one of the fastest-growing college districts within the state. Just a few years in the past, the district served 11,500 college students. Now, that quantity tops 13,000.

The children suppose these new studying areas are terrific. The school rooms are vibrant and alluring. The furnishings may be very purposeful and may accommodate many actions. It’s additionally very sturdy and might be cleaned simply, which is necessary when utilized by youngsters of this age.”

Dr. Patrick Patte

To accommodate this speedy development, whereas additionally giving college students many choices for his or her training, Hazleton opened two new educational amenities in fall 2023. The district bought a former TV studio and renovated the constructing to function a pre-kindergarten and particular training house known as Hazleton Area Academy. It additionally leased house in an area mall to deal with the Hazleton Area Cyber Academy, an internet tutorial program with house for stay testing, esports, and face-to-face conferences.

Designed and furnished with the assistance of School Specialty®, these distinctive studying areas had been created with most engagement, utility, and suppleness in thoughts—permitting educators within the district to satisfy a variety of pupil wants.

As college methods found throughout the pandemic, some college students thrive in an internet atmosphere. The Hazleton Area Cyber Academy offers college students the choice to obtain synchronous or asynchronous instruction on-line.

To present a bodily location for college students, the district leased house in an area shopping center. “Students can come in for testing, one-on-one help, or for certain in-person activities,” Patte says. “This helps create a sense of community for them. Because it’s located in the mall, the facility is easily accessible through public transportation.”

The house is furnished with tables and stackable chairs that may be moved round simply and arrange in versatile configurations that change relying on the wants at any given time.

There can also be an esports room the place college students can collect to play esports, outfitted with particular person gaming stations, a large-screen monitor, and versatile seating for spectators. This space can be utilized to host visitor audio system for college students as nicely.

Offices and administration areas mirror the design and aesthetics of the Cyber Academy.

Hazleton Area Academy

Unlike many Pennsylvania districts, which depend on native Intermediate Units for his or her particular training providers, Hazleton gives its personal special-ed instruction.

Hazleton Area Academy hosts the district’s Early Intervention particular training program for kids ages 3 to five, in addition to Aspire, which continues the training of particular wants college students after highschool. These older college students study necessary life expertise in a sequence of school rooms furnished just like the rooms of a home, with a residing space, a eating space, and so forth.

In addition, the brand new constructing homes the district’s Pre-Ok Counts program, which serves youngsters who’re English learners or who qualify free of charge preschool based mostly on their monetary standing. For many households, personal pre-Ok packages usually are not all the time reasonably priced, and Pre-Ok Counts ensures these youngsters have the muse they should be profitable.

The pre-Ok and Early Intervention school rooms are furnished with movable desks from Classroom Select that match collectively in varied geometric shapes, to allow them to be configured to assist completely different group sizes and actions. There are additionally frequent studying areas on every ground, outfitted with comfortable, comfy seating in several types to provide college students many decisions.

“The kids think these new learning spaces are terrific,” Patte says. “The classrooms are bright and inviting. The furniture is very functional and can accommodate many activities. It’s also very durable and can be cleaned easily, which is important when used by children of this age.”

Young youngsters, particularly those that have particular studying wants, usually want quiet areas the place they’ll settle down and regulate their feelings. A sensory room outfitted with objects designed to stimulate youngsters’s senses, akin to sensory ground tiles from Abilitations, takes care of those wants.

Additionally, a well-equipped and age-appropriate basement gymnasium with a climbing wall aptly takes care of the necessity to work off extra vitality in a clear and secure setting.

Supporting Many Needs

In designing and furnishing these new studying amenities, the district turned to School Specialty for assist. School Specialty designer Susan Thornes listened to the district’s wants and designed areas which can be extremely versatile and adaptable for a lot of makes use of.

“School Specialty was a great help,” Patte says. “They’ve helped us create learning spaces that meet a wide variety of student needs. In today’s ever-changing environment, we need to be able to pivot quickly. With these new facilities, we can easily change the layout in just a few minutes to support many different learning needs.”


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