Hale Junior School


During Hale Junior School’s original consultation with SITE Architecture Studio, school leadership made it clear they wanted to create a learning environment that mirrored their educational philosophy of Prepare, Teach and Connect. After a feasibility study discovered the school’s existing buildings dating back to the 1960s would not meet the criteria, it was time for a new plan. A plan for the future that not only represents their philosophy but pays homage to the school’s rich history.

The architecture takes cues from the brick history of the school by creating foundations from which new pathways emerge, referring to the use of patterned brickwork. This connection with the past is also symbolically strengthened through a concrete mural depicting Hale Junior boys both past and present.


The design has three key spaces: a large multi-purpose breakout space defined by smaller general learning spaces and private external passive learning spaces. “The strength in the design of the flexible teaching spaces ties back to Hale’s ‘Prepare, Teach, Connect’ learning philosophy,” says Naomi McCabe, an interior designer with SITE. The multi-functionality of the teaching spaces enables the teacher to enact a noisy energetic session (to prepare), then quickly set-up for a stand-and-talk learning class (to teach) or smaller working groups (to connect) within the same room.

“To complement the interior design, we selected Shaw [Contract]’s Mindful Play collection and paired it with Color Frame, which made for a lively interaction between people and spaces and embodies the idea of play in educational spaces,” says McCabe. Furthermore, Mindful Play’s triangular pattern resembles the roof line of the school and the geometric forms with accent colors creating movement. This also gave SITE the ability to brand each learning hub and other spaces within the school in a different color.