January 08, 2020
Dear Methacton Community,
The Methacton Board of School Directors at their January 7, 2020 work session were presented an update on the design concept phase of the new Arrowhead Elementary School project. Mike Kelly from KCBA Architects of Hatfield Pa., provided the Board with an update on the project process that also addressed several challenges including the anticipated student growth in this area of the district, as well as the state of the existing building. He shared that through several meetings with teachers, support staff, and administrators, as well as considering feedback from community survey, his team was able to present a design concept commensurate with the identified needs while retaining focus on parity with the other three elementary schools in the district.
Highlights of the presentation include:
A. The structure is proposed as a two-story school building compared to the current single-floor design of Arrowhead.
B. The administration will plan for delivering the academic program while absent the 4 modular classrooms currently comprising grade 3 as a result of the new building needing to occupy that space. This is crucial to having the best long term placement of the building on the property and avoids the setback and existing tree line area of the property well.
C. There are planned separate entrances for car and bus traffic providing for greater safety on arrival and departures.
D. The entrance will be organized to best manage student arrival and control access while grouping the administrative offices, nursing, and school counselor spaces to better coordinate services for students and families.
E. A Library /STEM learning space will provide opportunity to be in the center of the building, but with walls to better support the needs of students.
F. Additional storage for student musical instruments is slated.
G. The gymnasium and grass field areas are being designed to allow for community and youth sports and activities.
The Board of School Directors recommended that areas such as the gymnasium, outdoor grass fields, and cafeteria have alternate options to ensure that appropriate community use can occur and that we can accommodate the proposed student projection. The 84,000 sq. ft. building, with a current estimated total costs of $33,787,820, is being proposed to move forward to the design development phase. In this phase, the architect will begin detailing the estimated costs, develop design documents, and hold parent and additional public meetings to inform and gather feedback on the project.
The administration will continue to keep our school community and the public apprised of any future meetings related to the Arrowhead Forward process.
Dr. David Zerbe
Superintendent of Schools