Indian Trail Elementary
Canal Winchester, OH
Steed Hammond Paul
Merit Award
POE Citation

Program & POE A
POE - Detailed

Site Plan
Floor Plans

Grades K-3
1,000 Students
95,449 SF
95 SF/student
$95 per Sq. Ft.
146 Acres
Completion: 1999

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A short form post occupancy evaluation is included beneath the planning principles; a detailed POE is available at:
Indian Trail POE

Steed Hammond Paul Inc.
1014 Vine Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202
Principal-in-Charge: Thomas Fernandez, AIA

Associate firms and product data are listed below the POE at bottom.

School Information:
Indian Trail Elementary School  (K-3)
6767 Gender Road, Canal Winchester, OH 43110
Ms. Susan Bochnovich  Superintendent, 614-837-4533
Site Development Cost: $982,752
Date of POE: May 2000

Planning Principles:

1. How does the project enhance learning (and teaching), and support the needs of all learners?
Every classroom shares a teacher workspace/tutoring room. Students retreat to these workspaces for short tutoring or small-group learning sessions when needed.  The feature allows students to remain “connected” to class activities because glass windows do not completely remove them from the group-learning environment. Parent volunteers also take advantage of the workspace rooms when tutoring students during class. The students and volunteers are in full view of the teacher and that helps the students get their work done.

2. How does the design reinforce the school as a center of the community?
The school features two gymnasiums, one on either side of the large cafetorium to allow multiple community functions to take place at one time.  Operable, soundproof partitions separate the three areas or allow the formation of one large seating area for student or community activities and events.  Adult basketball, volleyball and intramural sports can take place in the gymnasiums, while board meetings and other community functions can be held on the stage. These areas are accessible after school hours and the classroom wings can be closed off.

3. Describe the planning/design process and who was involved.
Through the Schoolhouse of Quality® customer-focused planning and design process, Canal Winchester customers/stakeholders and other important target groups provided input towards the new Indian Trail Elementary School at a variety of different levels of detail.  This input was collected within the six Schoolhouse of Quality process principles…(1) Customer Driven, (2) Team Led, (3) Visual Documentation, (4) Customer Confirmation, (5) Design Implementation and (6) Customer Feedback.

Customer Driven

As a first step in the research process, elementary teachers, parents with children in elementary school and community residents without children in Canal Winchester Schools participated in focus group discussions.  These randomly recruited community members were brought together to qualitatively uncover and discuss very broad issues of importance/customer values that related to the new elementary school.  Approximately 30 people participated in this phase of the research.
      Based on the input uncovered in the focus group discussions, surveys were developed to quantify the importance of various customer values, as well as rate how well existing Canal Winchester Schools perform on those customer values.  Written surveys were completed among fifty-eight (58) teachers/staff.  Telephone surveys were completed throughout the district among eighty-four (84) parents with children in Canal Winchester schools and fifty-seven (57) community residents without children in Canal Winchester Schools.  A total of one hundred and ninety (190) people participated in this phase of the research.

Team Led

After developing a strong understanding of the community’s values and priorities, an expert building-wide design team made up of teachers, administrators, parents, community members and SHP designers was convened.  This team’s goal was to develop conceptual solutions to the customer values identified in the Customer Driven phase.   Approximately 18-20 people participated in this phase of the Schoolhouse of Quality planning and design process.
       Ten (10) smaller department-level design teams were convened to address issues related to the various functional components/departments of the new elementary school.   These teams consisted of 3-8 people per group.  The purpose of these groups was to provide more detailed input (design parameters) based on the conceptual solutions developed in the building-wide design team.

Visual Documentation/Customer Confirmation

The customer driven concepts and parameters identified in the previous phase were developed more fully and then presented to design team members in the form of 3D computer models, floor plans etc.
Customer Feedback
       After the new building was open and in use, feedback research was conducted with the target customer groups (teachers/staff, parents & community members).   The focus of the research was to obtain feedback about how well the new elementary school delivers on customer values/requirements, express what customers like and dislike about the building and uncover the overall community perception of the new facility.  A total of one hundred twenty-nine (129) people participated in the feedback research (over 400 people participated in the planning and design process; see for more details).

4. How does the project provide for health, safety and security, beyond standard approaches?
The school was designed with security and safety in mind.  To protect all occupants, the building is secured throughout the day with all exterior doors locked once the students arrive each morning.  Anyone who enters the school after that time must enter through the clearly visible visitors’ entrance that opens directly to the welcome center and adjacent administration area. The building was designed with a traditional plan layout with two wings and a core area.  The core area has all shared functions: administration, clinic, cafeteria, gymnasiums, stage, music classrooms and art and media center on the second floor.  This allowed us to break down the scale of the facility.  

5. How does the project enhance the use of all available resources?
The site was planned to have a second school opposite the current facility.  This allows for one entrance on the site for both schools.  We also planned for the same type of vehicular circulation to be used for the second school facility. The school also offers a spacious media center that has numerous reading rooms to provide students with a quiet study atmosphere.  Two art rooms, containing pottery kilns and plenty of storage space for supplies, were designed for creative learning.

6. What unique strategies allow for flexibility and adaptability to changing needs?
Planning the site for a second school at the same time the current facility illustrates the scale of changing needs we had to deal with.  From the time we started planning the current facility to when construction was complete the District knew the current facility would be full.  We had to develop a building floor plan that could be replicated in the second facility.  The second facility is currently in design and is scheduled to be completed for the 2001 school year.

Post Occupancy Evaluation (short form)
Each firm applying for the SCN & Design Share Awards program were asked to
provide comments from 2 stakeholders in each of 4 groups: 1) students, 2) parents, 3) educators and 4) community representatives.

Q 1: What do you think is the greatest asset about the design of the learning environment?

Student 1 & 2: Due to the age of the students in this school we normally do not ask them to participate in any form of research. See Educator 3

Parent 1: I like the large lunchroom and I like the big classrooms. (Mother)

Parent 2: I like the windows that provide natural lighting and open up the classrooms.  The hallways allow for easy flow of traffic by students. (Mother)

Parent 3: I like the way the floors are separated by grade levels.  The cafeteria is a multi-purpose room and not only for serving lunch. (Father)

Educator 1: I like that it is a friendly, homey, secure building. I also like the positive feelings generated by the students. (2nd Grade Teacher)

Educator 2: The art room is very functional.  Lots of room and storage.  I can see students no matter what they are doing and behavior is much better. (Art Teacher)

Educator 3: I love our school.  I like my room and I am glad of all the storage & individual lockers.  The computer room is great to have. The art, music, gyms & library are great too. (1st Grade Teacher)

Community Rep. 1: I really like the spacious rooms they have. (Female Community Member)

Community Rep. 2: I like that it is set back off the road where nobody could get to it except through the main entrance. (Female Community Member)

Q 2: What would you change about the design of this learning environment?

Student 1 & 2: Due to the age of the students in this school we normally do not ask them to participate in any form of research. See Educator 3.

Parent 1: I don’t like the ceiling in the cafeteria. (Mother)

Parent 2: I wish the classrooms for the special education classes were on the first floor.  That’s the only thing I don’t like. (Mother)

Parent 3: Its an awful long way from the main parking lot to the building. (Father)

Educator 1: Sometimes the large windows to the hallway are a distraction to students. (2nd Grade Teacher)

Educator 2: There is absolutely no way to display things on the walls, so nobody hangs anything up and the environment feels sterile. (Art Teacher)

Educator 3: I want to display my students work in the hallways, but there are no easy ways to do this.  We need more bulletin boards. (1st Grade Teacher)

Community Rep. 1: They need to have a larger area to pick up kids.  It seems a little chaotic when parents pick them up. (Female Community Member)

Community Rep. 2: I think that they spent too much money on the cafetorium wooded ceiling, that was unnecessary. (Female Community Member)

A comprehensive Post Occupancy Evaluation is available at: Indian Trail POE

Associate Firms:
Construction Manager: Ruscilli Construction, Roger Mc Loney, 614-876-9484
Mechanical: Heapy Engineers, 614-457-2696
Structural: Graham Obermeyer Partners, Ltd., 513-621-7073
Landscape: Ken Cunningham & Associates Inc., Ken Cunningham, 513-381-7131
Kitchen: Joby Smith, 513-779-7970
Technology: Heapy Engineers, 614-457-2696
Photography: Seth Boyd, 513-684-1729

Product Information:

Carpet & Flooring
Carpet: Interface (Media Center), Shaw (Classrooms)
Flooring: Mannington Commercial
Construction Materials
Brick/Masonry: Continental Cast Stones
Cabinets: TMI
Doors & frames:Von Duprin, Hoger, Toton, Rockwood, VT Industries
Elevators: Dover
Movable Partitions/Walls: Modernfold
Paint: Benjamin Moore/Zolotone
Roofing:  Certainteed
Windows: EFCO Windows & Curtainhale
Indoor: Day Brite
Locks: Corbin Russwin
Washroom Equipment

Fixtures: Oasis, American Standard
Accessories: Bradley
HVAC / Controls
HVAC Units: Train
HVAC Controls: Train
Auditorium/Assembly: Beck
Library/Media Center: Worden. MS Shelving, KI
Chalk/whiteboards:  Marsh Ind.