Dr. Walter Cunningham School for Excellence

Waterloo, Iowa

The Dr. Walter Cunningham School for Excellence was the first school built as part of a plan to replace outdated schools and accommodate new early-childhood programs.

The desire to leave the school intact and operating until construction was completed inspired the U-shaped floor plan. The resulting entrance courtyard now has a sundial where the old school ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONASSOCIATED FIRMRozeboom/Miller ArchitectsCOST PER SQ FT$94.14FEATURED IN2003 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYCommon Areas stood.

The main entrance greets students and guests with the school motto, “If it is to be, it is up to me.” Corridors are highlighted with unique display walls and wayfinding that incorporates the school logo.

The two-story media center, surrounded by classrooms and open resource areas, defines the main body of the school. Art and music classrooms are grouped together, and an early-childhood wing provides separate resource and play areas for the youngest students.

A secure main entrance during school hours ensures student security while allowing a high level of community involvement. For additional flexibility, a separate entrance at the early-childhood wing accommodates early-morning arrivals, and the community wing, which houses the gymnasium and cafeteria, can be opened for community activities in the evening without opening the rest of the school.