Virco PlanSCAPE® Creates Flexible Learning Spaces for New K-8 School
Located on the bayside of U.S. 1 at mile marker 89 in Florida, Plantation Key School opened its new two-story building in January 2019 to K-8th grade students. The principal had a specific vision for the building - flexible learning spaces that integrated new technology and 21st century learning tools - something the old building did not have. With the goal to incorporate as many types of furniture in the classroom and collaborative spaces to support all types of learning, Plantation Key School turned to Virco to help bring their visions into reality.
The principal had a unique outlook for the classrooms and offices for Plantation Key School. She wanted instructors to teach in multiple ways in multiple learning spaces with timeless pieces that would not grow outdated. She envisioned classroom furniture that could be easily reconfigured to provide “station-to-station” group learning or easily separated for more individual learning.
The PlanSCAPE team got to work and designed classrooms that could seamlessly transition from the classroom into the common areas and hallways. Classrooms were furnished with ergonomic, flexible seating that could easily be moved by students or teachers and desks that adjust from sitting to stand-up height that work alone or nest together. Colors of seating and laminates were selected to complement the school’s colors, creating visually inviting spaces.
When it came time for delivery and installation, the location of the school provided an interesting
challenge. The school was located on a two-lane road in the Florida Keys. The Virco Installation and Sales Team met for pre-delivery meetings with the contractor and the county to coordinate a smooth delivery and discuss any potential obstacles. As a result, Plantation Key School was able to open on-time and on budget with furniture solutions that met their vision for flexible learning spaces with Virco's contract available through OMNIA Partners, Public Sector.
Classroom spaces flow freely into the common areas and hallways. Each grade level is a mix of ZUMA® Series Lab Stools, Cantilever Chairs, Choose-To-Move Chairs, Rocking Chairs and Task Chairs with ZUMA® Series Desks for collaborative learning. Some classrooms included soft seating with anti-microbial vinyl for additional seating choices.
With new technology for its students, the school developed STEM spaces, including a marine-science-lab, outdoor lakeside amphitheater and dock and a “Science-On-a-Sphere” lab that uses projectors to display aspects of the earth on a large globe. The lab was furnished with stadium-style soft seating and a mobile lectern so students and the instructor could work anywhere in the lab.
The Cafeteria, also known as Learning Piazza, serves as both a cafeteria and an auditorium. The space was furnished with Mobile Convertible Bench Tables that can be converted from a dining table to bench configuration with a full backrest.
The Media Center was created to be the hub of the school and needed to be as versatile as possible to serve both its elementary and middle school students. The space was furnished with mobile bookcases, fun-shaped activity tables at 30” and café height, as well as soft seating options to make this space fit all its needs.
The Virco team was amazing. They were on time, flexible and shared their expertise. They walked us through the entire process each time. They returned our phone calls immediately and emails were always answered. They provided hours of input based on the vision we had for the school. The team’s professional and passionate dedication to the process helped us make the right choices.
Our #1 goal was to incorporate as many types of furniture in classrooms and collaborative spaces that met students’ needs. We were very interested in flexible seating with as many options as possible. This was important as we incorporated more and more seating choices for the students. The furniture choices met our goals. The design and colors are complementary to our building. The teachers love the furniture on wheels. The students love the flexible seating. It has made a positive impact on our school culture.
Virco PlanSCAPE exceeded our expectations with the ability to bring ideas to the table that were in line with the vision for PKS. The tools that they used provided the visual component to clearly demonstrate where furniture was going to be placed and the ability to maximize space. The Virco team was very helpful so we did not over order, and our spaces are functional and beautiful. The expertise of the Virco PlanSCAPE team saved us time and money because they really listened to our vision.
Lisa Taylor, Principal, Plantation Key School