St Patrick Primary School – Early Learning Refurbishment
8 Ellen Street, Fremantle, WA 6160
Bill Coe, Murray Slavin
St Patrick’s Primary School is an established single-stream school on a very small site in the centre of Fremantle and accommodates students from Kindergarten to Year 6.
The project involved conversion of a wing of four existing 1960’s classrooms (9m x 7.2m) in to an Early Childhood Centre accommodating Year 1, Kindergarten and Pre-Primary facilities.
Early Learning Centre (ECC):
245sqm of Early Learning space was created by joining 3 classrooms by constructing three new 4m wide openings in existing walls between each classroom and enclosing 50sqm of existing adjacent covered area. The classrooms, artroom and covered area were made available for the ECC due to the construction of a new standalone facility which formed Stage 2 of the project.
The ECC includes toilets for both Kindergarten and Pre-Primary students, staff toilets, laundry and wash-down facilities, a servery, built-in storage and 205sqm of general learning space.
Year 1 Classroom:
The fourth existing classroom in the 1960’s wing was refurbished for a Year 1 classroom and a new opening was constructed into an adjacent storeroom and converted in to a sunken retreat to cater for small group learning.
An existing 6m wide courtyard running the length of the classroom wing was landscaped to create a secure external play and learning area for the ECC separate to the rest of the school.
Passive supervision (uninterrupted sightlines), stimulating learning environment (varied material and colour palette), provision of spaces that cater to small learning groups, flexibility (no internal walls), inexpensive modernisation of aged building fabric (hanging bulkheads, recycled carpet tiles), technological innovation (ceiling mounted power and data for flexible device use)