School Highlight: Spring Creek Elementary
Spring Creek Elementary School is one of eight elementary schools located in the State College Area School District. Opened in the fall of 2019, this new facility combines the old Lemont and Houserville elementary schools into a modern, 71,486-square-foot building, perfectly designed for education in the 21st Century.
Over 350 students in kindergarten through fifth grade attend this state-of-the-art school, which utilizes 67 faculty and staff members. It's located in the community of Houserville at 217 Scholl Street, State College, a less than 10-minute drive from Penn State's campus.
Designed to be LEED gold certified, the building is equipped with solar panels that will produce at minimum 15 percent of the electricity it uses. Water and energy usage will also be lower than a similarly sized non-LEED certified school.
Simple but important features are at the base of the school’s design, like a standalone gym with full-sized basketball court and a standalone kitchen and cafeteria.
Much of the school has been designed as open concept, like the cafeteria/auditorium and main entryway, which allows for spillover seating for large events that may occur at the school. This new space also allows flexibility for the district, opening up new options for hosting events.
The building is a massive upgrade to district facilities, and offers abundant natural light and a pleasing design. Take, for example, the new open concept 16,000-book library, built for easy monitoring of students while providing a peaceful spot for learning next to a grassy tree-lined courtyard.
Additional contemporary features have been incorporated into the school, such as the small group instruction rooms located in each wing. These spaces were designed as a “breakaway space” for teachers and their students, adding flexibility and a more casual learning space than a regular classroom. Bathrooms have also received a 21st Century update -- a shared sink area for boys and girls and separate stalls. Individual and gender-neutral single bathrooms are also present, mostly for teacher or visitor use.
Spring Creek Elementary is the newest facility in the district, but other elementary schools like Easterly Parkway, Gray’s Woods and Park Forest, have been built within the last 17 years.