COLUMBIA, SC – November 20, 2008 – The S.C. Design Arts Partnership is inviting collaborators to lend a hand with the School Design and Sustainable Communities Initiative, a year-long program to promote community-centered schools in the state. The new program is funded by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as a part of its national grant program, Helping Johnny Walk to School. South Carolina is one of six states to receive a grant. Interested parties should complete and fax response form available at www.southcarolinaarts.com/design.
Through the School Design and Sustainable Communities Initiative, the Design Arts Partnership and collaborators from across the state will help communities find new strategies for tackling the complex-and often competing-goals surrounding school siting policies and practices. Partners will help research school planning policies and launch a statewide public awareness campaign. The first meeting will be held 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Dec. 11 the S.C. Archives and History Center in Columbia.
This initiative will allow us to evaluate current policies and recommend new approaches that allow more flexibility in school construction and design, said Lindsey Moore, director of the Design Arts Partnership. By taking part in these activities, volunteering citizens and organizations can help change the way the state looks at school planning and design and make a real impact in our communities.
The project addresses issues cited in the National Trust’s seminal publication, Why Johnny Can’t Walk to School, which highlights reasons why America’s older and historic schools are being abandoned. The publication, one of many bodies of research the organization has produced on the topic, emphasizes that schools can be sited in ways that not only achieve educational objectives, but also anchor the local neighborhood, support better public health and spur economic development. For more about the National Trust’s efforts to preserve neighborhood schools, visit www.preservationnation.org/issues/historic-schools.
To join the School Design and Sustainable Communities Initiative, complete the response form available at www.SouthCarolinaArts.com/design and fax it to 803/734-8526. Contact Frances Kablick at [email protected] or 803/ 734-8898 for more information.
The South Carolina Design Arts Partnership is a joint initiative of the South Carolina Arts Commission and Clemson University with a mission to improve the quality of the built and natural environment through design, education, and leadership training.