Norma Rose Point School

We want this school to emulate our “Students at the Center” methods of teaching and learning.

Originally the home of University Hill Secondary School, the school campus is adjacent to the University of British Columbia, near student and multi-family residential neighborhoods, Musqueum Indian lands, and Pacific Spirit Park. Norma Rose Point School is designated as a Neighborhood Learning Center and received additional funding for community facilities. Conceived as part of a continuum of the UBC family of schools, from pre-school to post-secondary, the primary/ middle school lies adjacent to UBC daycare spaces, and it serves as a teaching laboratory for the UBC Faculty of Education. Musqueum heritage and traditions are honored through cultural-specific curriculum. The school is named after Musqueum educator “Papep” Norma Rose Point.

NRPS is one of three elementary schools in Vancouver designed by Fielding International to place students at the center of their own learning. The design responds to a global economy that demands fluency in the basics of literacy and numeracy, as well as mastery in the new basics, including independent learning, creative collaboration, and emerging technologies. Central to the design is a transition from a classroom-based organization to a learning community model, where teacher and specialists work in teams of three to five with student groupings of 90 – 125. Each learning community has at its heart a common area with natural light and views, a kitchenette, and ample space for gathering, presentations, independent, collaborative and technology-enhanced learning.

As a result, students are now grouped according to an age range but not grade, and are encouraged to venture above their age level if a subject interests them. This flexibility creates a highly personalized learning experience for every student. The curriculum is strongly based upon hands-on project-based learning, and building amenities include a kitchen lab, a greenhouse, garden terrace, music room with instruments, and maker labs. The spaces are flexible, connected with transparent garage doors that enable teachers to configure a variety of room sizes. Smaller group rooms are also acoustically separate, and dampening materials in the commons level sound even in these larger areas.

Project Data

Location: Vancouver, British Columbia

Type: New Construction

Size: 95,000 SF

Cost: $21 Million

Date Opened: 2014

Design Team: Randy Fielding, Isaac Williams