In the late 1980s, the Perry Local School District in Ohio enlisted our firm to rethink the entirety of its educational campus and create a learning environment ready for the 21st century. In association with the firm of Burgess & Niple, we planned the wooded site that would encompass the high school, middle school, and elementary school to be arranged in a quadrangle, with the schools and an athletic facility in each quarter. Each school fits into a natural clearing, enjoying scenic views of the surrounding woodlands, and the site is distinguished by mature trees and the Red Mill Creek.
The design team, led by Ralph Johnson, incorporated sustainable concepts, even before these ideas were standard in the profession. The project helped to pioneer careful consideration of daylighting and access to nature to enhance wellbeing among students and staff. Today, the campus continues to nurture its students and community through amenities such as the pools, athletic facilities, and the state-of-the-art Goodwin Theatre that are open to Perry residents. Because of its interconnected grounds with all schools residing in the Education Village, the campus creates a sense of ownership and place that nurtures young minds as they grow up and transition through grade levels all on one site.