Located on Djarra Country, Chewton Primary School sits in stunning bushland located on the outskirts of Chewton. The brief called for improvements to the learning spaces and essential upgrades to the heritage listed 1911 school building.
The school has been recognised for its work and commitment to reconciliation, receiving the Nalderun Award during 2023 Reconciliation Week. This year, the school was also shortlisted for the Resource Smart School Awards in recognition of their commitment to sustainability.
With these strong commitments in mind, our response to the brief was to introduce improvements to the school which both respected the setting and history of the existing building whilst also creating a dynamic contemporary learning environment for the students.
To achieve this, we removed selected windows between the classroom and corridor (which were salvaged and ‘re-homed’ by the school) and replaced these with new timber bi-fold windows. The new windows allow greater transparency between the classrooms and corridor space. In the classrooms, new reading nooks create a place to retreat or gather in small groups. The reading nooks create a sense on enclosure within the larger space. Matching seats in the corridor provide opportunities for learning and gathering to extend into the circulation space.
The renovation also included new insulation to all external walls, lockers, lighting, carpet, plus a fresh calm interior colour scheme. Outside, the building was restored using the existing heritage colour scheme. A new access ramp wraps around the building and connects the heritage school building to the nearby art & amenities building.
With a modest budget, the renovation has provided this much-loved school building with a respectful yet exciting learning environment.