Building program update
St James is a delightful school with a very strong sense of community. Its progressive teaching methods, academic excellence and nurturing approach to all students sees it positioned as a much-loved hub of the community. Blessed with dedicated staff and supportive families, St James provides a positive learning environment in which children are encouraged to develop and grow into the very best they can be.
The school’s inherent character is not, however, reflected in its physical presentation, nor does the present layout effectively facilitate current teaching methods. Which is why 2018 is such a very exciting time for the school …St. James is finally getting its well-deserved make-over!
The goal of the St James refurbishment is to bring to fruition the refurbishment of the existing school buildings into modern learning spaces that will fulfill progressive pedagogic demands, within the allocated budget ($3 million).
Much of 2017 was spent working through the nitty gritty of the process; defining the future direction of the school, financial applications and approvals from the Catholic Education Office and the Archdiocese, council regulations (and the many elements to be considered from this perspective) and of course the design possibilities and restrictions of the current school buildings.
Specialist school architects Baldasso Cortese were appointed early in 2017 and bring to the project vast and impressive experience within the education sector. Please refer to their website to see examples of their work, which include St Kevins Toorak, Deakin University, Ivanhoe Grammar and Padua College in Mornington. wwwbcarch.net
Baldasso Cortese, together with Father Martin, myself, the school board and the school building committee have worked through the many issues that we faced with the school's refurbishment, including the complexities surrounding the 'air bridge' - the structure that is to join the two existing buildings. BC have been very dedicated to our goal of creating a wonderful learning environment for our children whilst keeping the project within budget.
Baldasso Cortese recently presented the latest version of their design and it is looking fantastic. Council approval has not yet been received for the refurbishment, however we are hoping to have this in the next month or so. When everything has been approved, I will take great pleasure in presenting these plans to the school community.
In the meantime, please refer to the images in the gallery page. These images are concept drawings from initial planning meetings.