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1 PROGRESSIVE EDUCATION AND THE DESIG N OF AMERICAS POSTWAR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS: THE CASE OF ENGLEWOOD ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, SARASOTA, FLORIDA By CLARISSA L. CARR A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FL ORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF INTERIOR DESIGN UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2013
2 2013 Clarissa L. Carr
3 To my family
4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS First, I would like to th ank my chair and mentor, Morris (Marty) Hylton III. Without his presence at the University of Florida I may have never realized my love of historic preservation. I could not have asked for a better teacher and friend. I would also like to thank Candy Carmel Gilfilen for being a great role model in the world of teaching, her energy and enthusiasm for design will never cease to amaze me. Thank you as well to my second committee member, William Tilson. I am very appreciative to Lorrie Muldowney and the Sarasot a County History Center for opening their doors on weekends and holiday s. I would like to thank my friends and classmates in preservation and design who helped me through this writing process T hank you to Brett Lackey for his thesis support and encouragem ent Thank you to my brother, James, for taking an interest in what I do and reminding me not to take for granted how cool history and design can be. Finally, I would like to thank my parents; Jan and Jimmy Carr, for their never ending support and always e ncouraging me to pursue what makes me truly happy.
5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS .................................................................................................. 4 LIST OF TABLES ............................................................................................................ 7 LIST OF FIGURES .......................................................................................................... 8 ABSTRACT ................................................................................................................... 10 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION .................................................................................................... 12 2 CONTEXT ............................................................................................................... 26 National Context ..................................................................................................... 27 Progressive Education and the Prewar Classroom .......................................... 28 Progressive Education and the Postwar Classroom ......................................... 34 Local Context .......................................................................................................... 38 3 METHODOLOGY ................................................................................................... 56 Qualitative Case Study Analysis ............................................................................. 56 Thematic Analysis and Modernism ......................................................................... 57 Thematic Analysis of School Design ....................................................................... 58 John I. Goodlad Teaching Approach ...................................................................... 59 Selection of Site ...................................................................................................... 60 Critical Themes ....................................................................................................... 62 4 ENGLEWOOD ELEMENTARY ............................................................................... 65 History of Englewood Elementary School ............................................................... 65 Application of Themes ............................................................................................ 72 Democracy ....................................................................................................... 73 Identity .............................................................................................................. 75 Flexibility ........................................................................................................... 78 Engagement ..................................................................................................... 79 Conclusion .............................................................................................................. 81 5 CONCLUSION ........................................................................................................ 95 Advocating the Pres ervation of Postwar Public Schools ......................................... 98 Limitations ............................................................................................................. 100 Recommendations for Future Research ............................................................... 102
6 LIST OF REFERENCES ............................................................................................. 108 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH .......................................................................................... 113
7 LIST OF TABLES Table page 2 1 Sarasota Public School Program 19541960 ...................................................... 46 4 2 Methodology Chart ............................................................................................. 83
8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 1 1 Map of the nine schools and additions designed between 1954 and 1960 in Sarasota County, Florida. ................................................................................... 25 2 1 Typical one room classroom plan. ...................................................................... 47 2 2 One of John Deweys Laboratory School classroom.. ........................................ 47 2 3 Corona Avenue classroom.. ............................................................................... 48 2 4 Crow Island plan.. ............................................................................................... 48 2 5 Crow Island classroom. ..................................................................................... 49 2 6 Rendering of Heathcote Elementary. .................................................................. 49 2 7 Plan of Heathcote Elementary. ........................................................................... 50 2 8 Heathcote Elementary School classroom. .......................................................... 50 2 9 Jack West.. ......................................................................................................... 51 2 10 The opening of Booker Elementary School. ....................................................... 51 2 11 Riverview High School classroom. ..................................................................... 52 2 12 John. I. Goodlad.. ............................................................................................... 52 2 13 1928 Englewood Elementary School. ................................................................. 53 2 14 Children during class at E nglewood Elementary. ............................................... 53 2 15 The replacement of the Englewood cafetorium for a parking lot. ........................ 54 2 16 E arly photograph of Phillis Wh eatley Elementary School. .................................. 55 2 17 Community members showing their support for sav ing Phillis Wheatley Elementary ......................................................................................................... 55 4 1 Philip His s seated front row, center with the rest of the Sarasota Board of Public Instruction. .............................................................................................. 85 4 2 Portable classroom at Englewood Elementary School. ...................................... 85 4 3 Aerial perspective of Englewood master plan. .................................................... 86
9 4 4 Master plan of Englewood Elementary School. .................................................. 86 4 5 Desig nation of classroom buildings. ................................................................... 87 4 6 Covered walkway leading to cafetorium. ............................................................ 87 4 7 Plan and section of the Englewood Elementary S chool cafetorium. ................... 88 4 8 Section through a Fruitville Elementary School classroom. ................................ 88 4 9 Floor plan for a typical classroom nest at Englewood Elementary School.. ........ 89 4 10 Advertisement for folding accordion wall. ........................................................... 90 4 11 Section through classroom nest. ........................................................................ 91 4 12 Flexible classroom space at Englewood Elementary School. ............................. 91 4 13 Aerial view of classroom nest and cafetorium. .................................................... 92 4 14 Sliding glass window walls at Englewood. .......................................................... 92 4 15 Children playing outside at Englewood Elementary School. ............................... 93 4 16 Outdoor learning areas at Englewood Elementary School. ................................ 93 4 17 Children playing outside at Englewood Elementary School. ............................... 94 4 18 Englewood Elementary School cafetorium. ........................................................ 94 5 1 Original rendering of Tuttle Elementary School. ............................................... 104 5 2 Jack West rendering of the revised Tuttle Elementary School. ........................ 104 5 3 Jack West rendering of Tuttle Elementary School. ........................................... 105 5 4 Jack West rendering of Tuttle Elementary School. ........................................... 105 5 5 Exterior of Englewood Elementary School.. ..................................................... 106 5 6 Outdoor corridor at Englewood Elementary School. ......................................... 106 5 7 Sign at Englewood Elementary School. ............................................................ 107 5 8 Riverview High School Demolition. ................................................................... 107
10 Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Interior Design PROGRESSIVE EDUCATION AND THE DESIGN OF AMERIC AS POSTWAR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS: THE CASE OF ENGLEWOOD ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, SARASOTA, FLORIDA By Clarissa L. Carr May 2013 Chair: Morris Hylton III Major: Interior Design Prior to World War II, public school buildings were largely looked at as utilitarian spaces C lassrooms constructed in the 1920s and 1930s often followed the model first conceived for schools of the nineteenth century. Though progressivism took many forms, educational theorists such as John Dewey thought that there could be a better method and environment to educate children. Deweys University of Chicago Laboratory School employed his theories of hands on learning into real world design. The traditional classrooms were transformed into spaces where students could use experiential learning to understand a concept. While many schools were being built after World War II in the United States, a unique collection of buildings were in the process of being designed in Sarasota, Florida. They were the product of a group of architects that came to be known as the Sarasota School of Architecture. These architects employed modern building ideas, materials, and techniques adapted to the climate and concept of Floridas West coast. Philip Hiss III (1910 1988) Chair of the Board of Public Instruction, enlisted several of these architects to create new schools that were purposefully progressive.
11 Between 1954 and 1960, the Board oversaw the completion of nine new schools and additions Through a case study analysis and archival research, this thesis will investigate how the design of Englewood Elementary School, designed by Jack West in 1959, represented innovative design and employed the progress ive teaching theories of John I. Goodlad ( 1917) It is hoped that by exploring the significa nce of Englewood as a benchmark for progressive design and pedagogy, the school will be retained and maintained rather than demolished. Instead of defining Englewood Elementary School o nly through p hysical features, a series of four themes are used incorporat ing design and sociocultural elements. These themes are democracy, flexibility, identity, and engagement. The team teaching pedagogy and innovative open plan design are both demonstrated through these themes and reinforce the significance of Englewood. It is possible that t he themes can later be modified to apply to many public schools of the postwar period and in return show the significance of t hese schools throughout the nation.
12 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION A rural coastal community spread across two counties, Englewood, Florida was an unlikely locat ion for a remarkable partnership between innovative design and pedagogy. The 1959 Englewood Elementary School addition was one of the first schools to incor porate team teaching and a non graded curriculum and incorporate an open plan. In the early 1950s, t he students of Englewood were taught i n a 1928 school building by teachers who would usually stay no longer than a year. There was little to entice young teachers to stay in a remote community where no one would pass through by chance.1 This changed when Mr. and Mrs. William Henry Vanderbilt (19011981) and Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt Jr. (19121999) started a neighborhood development and ranch, Cape Haze, near Englewood. The Vanderbilts initiated an annual grant in 1953 of $20,000 for Englewood Elementary School with the intent of attracting better teachers, developing a library, and creating the strongest possible instructional program for the boys and girls of Englewood.2 The strength and growth of this program could not occur through funding alone. An expert was needed to execute this vision. Introduced to the Englewood project between 1 953 and 1955 by his colleague Dr. Robert Anderson, Dr. John I. Goodlad (1917) was an educational researcher and theorist, and chair of the Chicago Center for Teacher Educ ation. Over several years, Goodlad directed the hiring of better teachers and the gradual transition to a nongraded curriculum with team teaching. The 1 M. Frances Klein and John M. Bahner, Curriculum Change in Concert: The Englewood School Project, in The Beat of a Different Drummer: Essays on the Educational Renewal in Honor of John I. Goodlad, ed. Kenneth A. Sirotnik et al. (New York: Peter Lang, 1999), 29. 2 The Full Text of the Report. The Englewood Herald, May 16, 1958, 1.
13 development of this teaching approach would only be enhanced with a new school building. As part of the Sarasota Public School Program under the direction of Philip Hanson Hiss III (19101988), a new m aster plan was designed by the firms of Bolton McBride and West and Waters. Architect Jack West (19222010) worked directly with Dr. Goodlad to create a space that would cater to the needs of a nongraded school. The result was a design unlike most had seen before. A group of easily customizable classrooms in size and arrangement with folding accordion walls and furniture on wheels supported a variety of learning activities based on concepts introduced by Progressive educational theorists and practitioners. What was happening in public school education and school design in Florida was occurring around the nation after World War II. Known as the baby boom, the increase in child births between the years 1945 and 1964 placed a strain on Americas public school system. There werent enough teachers or classrooms to meet the growing need. Rather than viewing this situation as a problem, many architects and designers saw it as an opportunity to test new ideas and war time technologies. Prior to World War II, public school buildings were often looked at as utilitarian spaces, strictly for the dissemination of knowledge from teacher to student through methods s uch as recitation. Even though constructed in the 1920s and 1930s, classroom design followed the same model first conceived for rural and urban schools of the nineteenth century. Instead of continuing to build a school of the past, the new postwar cl assroom would look toward the future, connect with nature, and encourage creative critical thinking as a continuation of the progressive ideals established prior to World War II.3 3 Lindsay Baker, A History of School Design and its Indoor Environmental Standards, 1900 to Today, National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities (2012): 8
14 In the years leading up to World War II, both school curriculum and design w ere witnessing an evolution. The theories and proposed methods of educational progressives, like John Dewey (18591952), proposed, among other things, hands on learning and less dependence on the sole knowledge of the instructor.4 The design of classrooms changed with this shift in pedagogy. Instead of the traditional desk bolted to the floor and facing the teacher Dewey proposed movable desks that allowed students to work together in teams He also suggested adding maps, chalkboards, and other teaching tools to t he blank walls. Deweys Chicago Laboratory School incorporated sand boxes for geography lessons and access to outdoor areas for hands on learning with nature.5 Dewey s theories fortified an experiential learning style that encouraged children to think crit ically, work with each other, and, as a result, become more democratic citizens.6 Public school education was transformed and challenged with the Great Depression of the 1930s. Progressive education practices began to fall out of favor as education increas ingly focused on the Three Rs of reading, writing, and arithmetic. Hands on workshops and other courses that were nonessential to a degree were cut. However, in more affluent communities, progressive education in the classroom was thriving. One of the best and most well known examples of progressive teaching theories implemented in the classroom designs is Crow Island School in Winnetka, Illinois. Built 4 John Dewey, My Pedagogic Creed, School Journal 54 (1897): 2 3 5 Project #2, John Dewey and Progressive Education, accessed January 21, 2011, http:// http://deweyprogressiveeducation.blogspot.com/ 6 David Tyack, The One Best System: A History of American Urban Education (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1974), 178.
15 in 1940, and designed by Eliel and Eero Saarinen along with Perkins, Wheeler and Will; Crow Island Sc hool set a precedent for Lshaped classrooms and a more human scale to the learning environment. The team was brought in by Carlton Washburne, the progressive superintendent of Winnetka Public Schools at the time. After the completion of the project, Washburne described the most important feature of Crow Island: T hat it is the architectural expression of an educational philosophy, which in Winnetka is essentially the philosophy of progressive educationit recognizes the childs need for physical health, emotional and social adjustment, self expression and the development of special aptitudes, and the mastery of the useful parts of reading, writing, arithmetic, history, geography and science. 7 Taking Deweys ideas one step further, Crow Island classroom walls were equipped with tackable surfaces for the students work and furniture was designed to the scale of a child. The classrooms demonstrated a more residential feel through the use of window treatments, like curtains, and low ceilings. The arts and sc iences were also brought into classrooms with a dedicated science niche and pianos in classrooms .8 Crow Island Elementary School would become a model for postwar educational facilities such as those built in Sarasota in the latter half of the 1950s. Af ter t he Great Depression ended and with the start of World War II j obs were available once again and children were able to do their part with activities such as scrap metal collection and other drives. After the Second Wo rld War in 1945, t he com bin ation of soldiers returning, women resuming a domestic societal role, and shift to a growing suburban life h elped fuel the increase in the number of children the nation had never 7 Interview with Beth Hebert, Design Share, accessed January 17, 2013, http://www.designshare.com/index.php/articles/interview bethhebert/ 8 Amy F. Ogata, Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Schools, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 566.
16 seen before. 3.4 million babies were born in 1946, 20 percent more than the year before. The birthrate steadily increased the following years up until 1964. By 1964, 76.4 million baby boomers had been born in the United States.9 The postwar years of 19451960 saw a dramatic increase in public school enrolment. Eleven million children began to enter school Existing classroom space and outdated teaching pedagogies were found deficient or unacceptable.10 The re appropriation of wartime technologies to the construction industry and the disse mination of new teaching pedagogies informed public school building campaigns across the country This was especially the case in Florida.11 Post World War II Florida brought suburbs, baby boomers and innovation. Lack of adequate classroom space and the poor quality of school design motivated Philip Hanson Hiss III who according to Time magazine was a self styled Renaissance man12 who relocated from the Northeast to Sarasota in 1948 and began a real estate development company.13 Hiss was not pleased with the learning environment, describing the schools as a collection of piano crates and grim barracks.14 A friend encouraged him to run for the school board, and he won, later becoming the chair of the Board of Public Instruction in Sarasota, Florida. 9 Baby Boomers, History, accessed January 15, 2013, http://www.history.com/topics/baby boomers 10 Amy F. Ogata, Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Sc hools, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 562. 11 Sarasota Success Story. Time Magazine, December 28, 1958, 35. 12 Ibid. 13 Loretta Marie Muldowney, Sarasota Countys School Building Program 19551960 (Master Thesis, University of Florida, 1999), 32. 14 Sarasota Success Story. Time Magazine, December 28, 1958, 35.
17 After initially clashing with some of the School Board members over the design of schools, Hiss started enlisting local architects that were part of a group that came to be known as the Sarasota School a regional movement of midcentury modern architecture to design innovative new schools.15 With some difficulty, Hiss was able to get the school board to agree on Sarasotas first modern school, Brookside Junior High School designed by William and Ralph Zimmerman in 1955. This school won the favor of the public by coming in $40, 0 00 under budget through the use of manufactured materials such as steel and glass and a focus on function.16 Between 195 4 and 1960, the Sarasota County Board of Public Instruction oversaw the completion of six new schools and four additions to existing faci lities. Collectively, they would become known as the Sarasota Public School Program (Figure 1 1) These schools were some of the first public buildings of the Sarasota School of Architecture. Design features of the schools, residences, and other structures created by the Sarasota School adapted modernist principles and formal characteristics to the geographic, climatic, social, and cultural context of Sarasota These schools were able to passively cool the classrooms through sun shades, walls of movable wi ndows, and clerestory windows eliminating the need for air conditioning .17 Not only progressive in architecture, these schools were progressive in interior design and pedagogy. Hiss described the new pedagogies, The board was more successful with educational innovation in elementary schools and Junior high 15 John Howey, The Sarasota School of Architecture: 19411966 (Cambridge: The MIT Press, 1995), 5 16 Sa rasota Success Story. Time Magazine, December 28, 1958, 35. 17 Loretta Marie Muldowney, Sarasota Countys School Building Program 19551960 (Master Thesis, University of Florida, 1999), 52.
18 schools.18 Progressive pedagogy, especially in the elementary schools, inspired creativity in pupils .19 Schools such as Englewood Elementary were designed to support progressive pedagogies. The school studied for this thesis was the Englewood Elementary School a ddition by Jack West in 1959. Englewood was selected as the case study as it represent ed a progressive teaching pedagogy for elementary schools of the era. It was one of the first schools to implemen t an open plan classroom design, with accordion w all dividers and furniture on casters. This open plan design corresponded with the nongraded curriculum and team teaching approach of the school. The nongraded curriculum was implemented by John I. Goodlad, a progressive theorist w ith support by the Vanderbilt family Elements of this pedagogy consist ed of creating democratic citizens for the future, encouraging the teachers to get to know the students, and experiential hands on learning facilitated by movable furniture within a more open space plan.20 The methodological approach of this study i s a thematic analysis of subjects that relate to the Englewood project. The subjects explored include progressive education, the postwar modern movement, the Sarasota School of Architecture, and modern schools. Several of these topics had themes identified by scholars. For instance, scholar Sarah Williams Goldhagen had defined themes that encapsulate the postwar modern movement as it was occurring in history, rat her than focusing on strictly 18 Hiss, Philip H, What ever happened to Sarasota? The Architectural Forum June 1967, 6673. 19 I bid. 20 Robert Hill Lane, The Progressive Elementary School (Cambridge: The Riverside Press, 1938), 35
19 architectural elements.21 This combination of sociocultural and design elements creates a discourse, as Goldhagen explains, What if we conceptualize modernism not as the result of a discourse but as itself that discourse? In this view, modernist buildings, project, urban planshave been proposals or hypothetical propositions offered up, either actually or hypothetically, to an identifiable community of recipients with the intent of testing that proposals merit and validity. T hese proposals, taken in aggregate, create a linked series of discussions and debates on a relatively autonomous set of questions.22 Through the investigation of these topics and themes, a new set of themes were established that apply to Englewood Elementar y School. It is impossible to fully understand the Englewood project without accounting for its context. Instead of searching only for physical elements that define Englewood, more holistic themes were created that identify the school within a larger context than the building footprint. Englewood was not designed in a vacuum, but was rather informed by the theories of Dr. Goodlad, the architectural knowledge and experiences of Jack West, the modern movement, and events on a local, state, and national scale. This thesis employ s a case study analysis to understand how Englewood Elementary School incorporated modern design in the postwar era to support a progressive teaching theory. Studies have been conducted on the design of better known prewar modern school s of the time such as Crow Island in Illinois and Heathcote in New York, which existed in primarily affluent and upper middle class communities.23 21 Sarah Williams Goldhagen, Coda: Reconceptualizing the Modern, in Anxious Modernisms: Experimentation in Postwar Architectural Culture. ed. Sarah Williams Goldhagen et al. (Montreal: Canadian Centre for Architecture, 2000), 320 22 Sarah Williams Goldhagen, Something to Talk About : Modernism, Discourse, Style, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 64 (2005):159. 23 Amy F. Ogata, Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Schools, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 574.
20 Scholar Amy Ogata states that with the developing design movement for postwar public schools, architects placed higher importance in pedagogy and made formal choices, such as self contained classrooms, indoor outdoor teaching areas, glass walls, and colorful homelike spaces, because of their educational implications.24 These schools set the tone for the nation in innovat ion and the incorporation of among other things, flexibility and democracy in the elementary school.25 The regional movement in Sarasota has not been largely studied for significance in classroom design and how the design may have supported progressive teaching theories. Englewood is the only school from the public school program during 1954 to 1960 to have employed the team teaching, nongraded curriculum and as such, was one of the first in the nation to do so.26 The Sarasota public school buildings serv ed their purpose and encouraged students to attend school. Hiss was proud in saying, That's one happy result of decent architecture the kids actually enjoy going to school now.27 Philip Hiss reflected back on the school program saying, Innovation multipl ies pressures and problems. It also opens up opportunities, which, if grasped, create further problems. Teachers even had to be briefed on how to use the new schools. And to most people anything unfamiliar is disquieting .28 24 Amy F. O gata, Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Schools, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 576. 25 Heathcote: A Pioneering School in Plan and Atmosphere. The Architectural Forum July 1954, 98105. 26 John I. Goodl ad, Romances with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 234. 27 Sarasota Success Story. Time Magazine, December 28, 1958, 35. 28 Hiss, Philip H, What ever happened to Sarasota? The Architectural Forum, June 1967, 6673.
21 Unfortunately, some of the school s reflecting the Sarasota School of Architecture are no longer standing. The school design is considered outdated to many after years of alterations and maintenance. However, these schools are significant heritage resources that represent an important mom ent in twentiethcentury American history. Yet, these resources are not recognized as significant by many They tell the story of innovation in design and progress in the development of pedagogy, but are disguised by lack of maintenance. The concept of mai ntenance is as big of an issue now as it was sixty years ago. Elements of popular culture, with shows such as Mad Men, are generating a renewed interest in the period, yet significant S chools and other structures of this era are being demolished every day. For example, to raise awareness and share their local midcentury modernism, Palm Springs hosts a modernism week each year with events such as tours, parties, and lectures. Technologies being used in construction were largely new at the time and experim ental. Air conditioning hadnt gained popularity yet, and was seldom incorporated into designs. The use of steel, plate glass, and even asbestos all had their building benefits at some point, but many of these technologies reach a limit. Public schools wer e especially sensitive to this limit, as prefabricated and inexpensive materials were widely used in the thousands of schools and additions created to keep up with the b aby b oom. Once a school reaches twenty to thirty years of age, the equipment will fre quently need to be replaced. After thirty to forty years the roof and electrical needs to be replaced, and the school starts to see rapid deterioration after forty years. Most schools that reach sixty years old become abandoned from a lack of
22 maintenance and updating.29 This is a frightening thought when 45 percent of the nations public schools were constructed between 1950 and 1969.30 This has created a difficult situation within the realm of historic preservation. Schools that are in need of repair and maintenance, or are even abandoned, are over fifty years old. Fifty years is a significant age for a structure, as this is when it becomes eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. Prior to that age, a building must of exceptional importanc e, or an integral part of districts that are eligible for listing in the National Register. 31 Preservationists want to save these schools as outstanding examples of architecture, indicators of society, and reminders of our heritage. Parents and many commu nity members want the best school for their children, and in most cases, they believe this is a new school. Despite preservation efforts, several schools have been demolished to make way for schools that support new theories on how to teach. Other schools are in disrepair and are no longer functioning as newer teaching technologies have been added and the original function of the building has been forgotten. Over time several of the schools have been demolished: Riverview High School, Booker Elementary School, Brookside Elementary School, and Venice Junior High School, with others being altered to a point unrecognizable of original design. The razing of Riverview attracted international attention. The awareness for the significance of these buildings had been raised. As part of a multiple property submission of a variety of buildings from the Sarasota School 29 A.C. Orn stein, School finance and the condition of schools, Theory into Practice 33 (1994): 118. 30 Cassandra Rowand, How Old Are Americas Public Schools? National Center for Education Statistics (1999): 1. 31 Marcella Sherfy and W. Ray Luce, Guidelines for Evaluating and Nominating Properties that Have Achieved Significance Within the Past Fifty Years National Register Bulletin (1998): 1.
23 of Architecture, the Paul Rudolph a ddition to Sarasota High School was added to the National Register of Historic Places on June 27, 2012.32 Although the addition was part of the larger submission primarily recognizing the significance of the architects and not for the innovation in public school design, this property is one of the few midcentury modern schools on the National Register. The Sarasota Sch ool of Architectures public schools are not only significant as forms of regional design, but also in some cases for the pedagogies used. In an era where schools from the recent past are being razed every day, it is hoped that by revealing the importance of Englewood as a benchmark for progressive design and pedagogy, the school will be retained and maintained rather than demolished. As their ages grow, the value and importance of these structures is n ot always conveyed, because they are not maintained and many design elements have been modified where they do not function as originally intended. This is why it is important to study the significance of these regional schools as reflections of the physical and social context, in hopes of conveying their innovation and importance, and saving these examples for future generations. This study of Englewood Elementary School is comprised of five chapters. The first introduces the project. The second provides an overview at the national level of major events in progressiv e teaching theories and modern school design. This chapter then delves into the local level of architecture, pedagogy, and the public school program in Sarasota, Florida after World War II. The third describes the methodological approach, analysis of themes in topics surrounding Englewood, and creation of a set of 32 Recommendations for Effective Rehabilitation, Sarasota Architectural Foundation, accessed January 10, 2013, http:// www.sarasotaarchitecturalfoundation.org/shs
24 themes that apply to the school. The fourth is an indepth look at the Englewood Project and identifies how the previously established themes influence the school. The concluding chapter assesses the preservation of the 1959 Jack West addition and recommendations for further research into the topic.
25 Figure 11. Map of the nine schools and additions designed between 1954 and 1960 in Sarasota County, Florida. Map created by author.
26 CHAPTER 2 CONTEX T Like public schools throughout the United States, Englewood Elementary School was not created in a vacuum. The evolution of the public school system has mirrored the development of the nation itself. Rural communities in early America placed emphasis on farming rather than schooling, as indicated in the simple schools primarily occupied in the winter months when less fieldwork was needed.1 As immigrants moved to the states and the industrial revolution peaked, schools paralleled the environment with large factory like schools in urban settings dedicated to producing a standard student. However, innovation was on the horizon for those not satisfied with the method and settings of public school education. With the turn of the twentieth century, educational t heorists, such as John Dewey, would make large contributions toward the progressive education movement. As educational pedagogy was evolving in North America, so was public school design. Architects, such as Richard Neutra, saw that the learning environment could be an enjoyable one if regionalism, flexibility, and the student were considered in the design.2 With the conclusion of World War II, progressive school design thrived while innovations in educational approaches were largely halted. This chapter wi ll delve into greater detail on these events and how the case of Englewood Elementary School in Sarasota, Florida was able to succeed in the innovation of both a team taught, nongraded curriculum and a modern school design that supported it. 1 Amy S. Weisser, Little Red School House, What Now? Journal of Planning History 5 (2006): 198, accessed October 23, 2011, doi: 10.1177/1538513206289223. 2 Aidan OConnor, A Setting for Childlife: The New School in the United States, in The Century of the Child ed. Emily Hall et al. (New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2012), 106.
27 National Co ntext Larger changes in American society and culture are reflected in the evolution of the countrys public school system. Originally, schooling took place in a utilitarian building and space, with little to no design features enhancing the educational exp erience. The typical country school house, as described by scholar Amy Weisser was generally a oneroom, wood framed building. Expediency governed its facilities. Irregularly cut windows limited light and air, a woodburning stove battles the winters col d, and an assortment of benches, chairs, and desks provided minimal workspace. The teachers desk and perhaps a blackboard marked the front of the room.3 Rote teaching techniques centered on memorization of Bible verses and passages from the McGuffey Reader. As education grew in urban areas, the education method followed suit. Working in factories became the way of life during the industrial revolution. Public school design transformed form rural one room schools to support the farmers children into massiv e buildings with classrooms arranged like egg cartons. Efficiency and order were the main objectives for public schools, with teaching approaches such as the Lancaster method.4 In the Lancaster teaching method, classrooms were arranged with rows of desks b olted to the floor facing the teacher seated at a desk placed on a platform (Figure 21) Groups of students were monitored by fellow students who were more advanced. This was a way to maintain order while increasing classroom 3 Amy S. Weisser, Little Red School House, What Now? Journal of Planning History 5 (2006): 198, accessed October 23, 2011, doi: 10.1177/1538513206289223. 4 David Tyack, The One Best System: A History of American Urban Education (Cambridge: Har vard University Press, 1974), 29
28 capacity. The students, monit ors, and head teacher prepared the youth for a life of factory work and supervision along assembly lines.5 Progressive Education and the Prewar Classroom Progressive education as a theory sought to create democratic citizens thr ough experiences in school t hat could be applied to life lessons. This led to the pedagogies backed by the progressive movement. Some believed that a progressive curriculum meant children should be unstructured, allowing complete freedom for the students. Other theorists, such as John Dewey believed that neither traditional teaching methods of discipline and recitation, nor the extreme of a completely unstructured classroom was the appropriate approach. Summarizing this approach in his book Modern Schools scholar Thomas Hille states, The childs needs are necessarily at the center of the educational program and, by association, the physical environment that supports it. Its basic premise is that every child is unique, with different needs, interests, abilities, and attitudes. The educ ation program responds to these differences by allowing children the freedom and independence to grow and develop as individuals, emphasizing the importance of self expression, self discipline, self confidence, personal motivation, and a basic sense of sec urity and belonging. At the same time, children are made cognizant of their relationships and responsibilities to others, emphasizing the importance of socialization, cooperation, democratic values, and commonly shared ideals basic to our cultural traditions .6 The term progressive, does not have one unique definition. It is comprised of various views on education from a multitude of theorists and educators hoping to improve how children learn. This thesis will focus on the types of progressive learning de fined by theorist such as John Dewey. As described later in this chapter, John Dewey would 5 David Tyack, The One Best System: A History of American Urban Education (Cambridge: Har vard Universi ty Press, 1974), 29 6 R. Thomas Hille, Modern Schools: A Century of Design for Education (Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2011), 265.
29 apply his teaching theories in what would become known as the Chicago Laboratory Schools, which would lead the way for the union of progressive design and pedagogy i n the classroom. Dewey sought to create a form of progressive education that provided children with the tools to become democratic citizens who could think independently as well as collaborate as adults in the future. Experiential, hands on learning would be the method Dewey would apply to his curriculum to get students interacting with one another, rather than independently memorizing information. A variety of experiences were provided both inside the classroom and in outdoor learning spaces. Dewey believed that each student was affected by each experience in a unique way. What may be helpful for one student might be unfavorable to another.7 Speaking about Deweys experiential teaching methods, Alfred L. Hall Quest states Scientific study leads to and enl arges experience, but this experience is educative only to the degree that it rests upon a continuity of significant knowledge and tothe degree that this knowledge modifies or modulates the learner's outlook, attitude, and skill. The true learning situation, then, has longitudinal and lateral dimensions. It is both historical and social. It is orderly and dynamic.8 The regimented and strict form of schooling a product of the industrial age, evolved with the application of Deweys progressive education t heories. Dewey theorized and realized an approach to education where students participated in the learning process with hands on activities that helped students apply the information they were learning. Dewey applied his teaching theories to the classrooms at the Chicago 7 John Dewey, My Pedagogic Creed, School Journal 54 (1897):77. 8 William Harms and Ida DePencier, Experiencing Educ ation: 100 Years of Learning at the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools (Chicago: The University of Chicago Laboratory Schools, 1996), ##.
30 Teaching Laboratory in 1896. Maps placed on the walls, outdoor learning spaces introduced, and sandboxes for teaching geology were among the features incorporated into the classroom (Figure 22) What was once a box filled with desks for memorization was evolving into an active space for learning that was supported by the classroom environment. The teachers were to be thought of as deliberative moderators who encourage general interest in discussion, not specific goals or values 9 This teaching style was to secure liberation of powers and make learning a collaborative effort. Discussions were encouraged within the classroom. Deweys teaching pedagogy was widely used and inspired the design of more flexible classrooms, without the teacher at the head of the classroom.10 One instance of a school pedagogy building off of the theories of John Dewey was the Gary Plan. The Gary Plan was developed by Superintendent William W. Writ from Gary, Indiana.11 The Gary Plan was based off of Deweys hands on teaching philosophy and applied it to his work study play school plan. This track was introduced in 1907 and had a vocational focus. This plan succeeded in rural areas, but did not work as well in urban areas.12 Context would prove to play a major role i n the success of a school, not only with pedagogy, but with design. If a pedagogy was geared toward 9 Jason Kosnoski, Artful Discussion: John Deweys Classroom as a Model of Deliberative Association, Political Theory 33 (2005):655. 10 I bid, 656. 11 William Scott Bradley, Perceptions About the Role of Architecture in Education (PhD diss., U ni versity of Virginia, 1994), 5. 12 Kenneth S. Volk, The Gary Plan and Technology Education: What Might Have Been? The Journal of Technology Studies 31 (2005): 39
31 teaching rural children how to learn a skill and work ethic for life on a farm, that curriculum would not transfer well to a student in a thriving city and vice versa. As mentioned previously there are many examples of progressive schools and progressive pedagogies. Some of the better known examples tend to be elementary schools. We will first look at widely published examples from architects such as Perkins, Wheeler and Will, and Richard Neutra. Architects began to design spaces that supported teaching theories of John Dewey around the 1930s. Areas for experiential learning were applied to design and classrooms catered more to childcentered learning were f orecasts for the next several decades of school design. In the 1930s, the educational innovation by John Dewey and projects developed in Europe inspired architect Richard Neutra with his design of an addition to Corona Avenue Elementary School. Located in southern California, this new model for public school design embraced the mild climate with regional design features. To passively cool the classrooms, each room was ventilated bilaterally on one side by clerestory windows connecting to a covered outdoor hallway, and on the other by structurally innovative sliding glass walls that opened individual garden patios a design that would later been seen in the Sarasota public schools.13 The outdoor learning spaces blended seamlessly with the interior of the cl assroom with furniture that could be used in both spaces (Figure 2 3) The single story school addition resembled an L shape. In addition to blending with the surrounding California suburban context, the single story design corrected a critical design fl aw with earlier schools in California. The multistory brick and stone buildings were unable to absorb the shock of earthquakes, where 13 Aidan OConnor, A Setting for Childlife: The New School in the United States, in The C entury of the Child ed. Emily Hall et al. (New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2012), 105.
32 single story, lightweight construction appeased safety concerns.14 Speaking about the Corona Avenue addition, scholar Aidan OConnor points out that, Once completed, in 1935, this radical design was widely published and described as everything from a test tube school to a penthouse on Mars, but it was also celebrated (especially by educators) as the ideal setting for John Deweys learning by doing and ultimately proved extremely influential.15 Constructed in 1940 in Winnetka, Illinois, Crow Island was one of the first and most widely publicized schools that employed a childcentered pedagogy and design. School superintende nt, Carleton Washburne saw the opportunity to create a school that focused on the child as the most important feature of the school. Washburne himself had attended progressive schools growing up in Chicago.16 Washburne brought together the farther and son design team on Eliel and Eero Saarinen with the lesser known firm Perkins, Wheeler, and Will to give form to his vision of this innovative school. The Sarrinens focused on the overall architectural concepts, while Perkins, Wheeler, and Will preformed prede sign research by surveying students, teachers, and staff. The design of Crow Island offered a new paradigm for the public elementary school Instead of a two or multistory school with classrooms accessed from a central corridor (doubledloaded corridors) Crow Island spread out and grouped classrooms into onestory wings (Figure 24) The concept was that c hildren would be able to foster 14 Aidan OConnor, A Setting for Childlife: The New School in the United States, in The Century of the Child ed. Emily Hall et al. (New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2012), 105. 15 I bid, 106. 16 R. Thomas Hille, Modern Schools: A Century of Design for Education (Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2011), 265.
33 a sense of community with this plan, where they may have gotten lost in the scale of a larger school. The classrooms t hemselves allowed for a series of experiences to be shared, with movable furniture now scaled to the size of a child. The L shaped classroom s of Crow Island included all elements needed for the entire school day. Instead of going from room to room, each classroom was equipped with a nook with a sink and casework for messier activities, movable furniture for a variety of subjects, as well as unisex restroom similar to how it would be at their home. E ach classroom had direct access to an outdoor courtyard area for experiences with nature. The design of the classroom included walls of windows with built in window seats and draperies to create a residential feel (Figure 2 5) One wall had a chalkboard mounted at a height where a child could write on it, and t he wall surrounding the chalkboard was made of a tackable wood for personalization. To continue the homelike feel, ceilings were lowered from the traditional twelve foot height to nine feet and inset with recessed lighting .17 To help with way finding for t he children, classroom doors were painted with various bright and bold primary colors. Utilizing resources of the time in this depression era, many of the furnishings were created through the Illinois Crafts Project made possible through the Works Progress Administration. The wood used for these furnishings, as well as for the tackable walls added visual warmth to the classrooms, creating a more comfortable environment for both the students and teachers. 17 Crow Island School, Challenge Solution, accessed January 5, 2013, http://rogershepherd.com/WIW/solution5/crow2.html
34 Progressive Education and the Postwar Classroom As W orld War II set in, the focus of educational philosophies moved from a n emphasis on freedom and experience in the classroom back toward a more structured framework focusing on didactic teachings. Schools such as Heathcote Elementary (1953) in Scarsdale, New Yor k maintained a childcentered focus under the design of Perkins Wheeler and Will, but not all schools were as fortunate. After World War II, a Cold War was started between the Soviet Union and the United States. Both were major powers that possessed nuc lear weapon technology. Americans were constantly aware of a potential attack with an atomic bomb attack by Russia. American children practiced bomb drills at school, families built bomb shelters, and tutorials on how to duck and cover in case of an attack were widely distributed. A Cold War mentality brought regimen back to the classroom and the general term of progressivism was increasingly viewed by many educators and the general public as misguided in a world changed by the growing rivalry between American democracy and Soviet communism. Scholar Amy Ogata noted that after World War II, the implications of public education gained increased significance with the rising birthrate and the growing specter of a Communist threat.18 The Cold War initiativ es to increase students knowledge in subjects such as math and science wou ld not allow for students to be left to their own experiential methods Some believed that in the progressive classroom, group learning allowed 18 Amy F. Ogata, Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Schools, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 562.
35 students to daydream, where in a structured classroom A ll students would learn the same concept.19 Despite the challenge to it progressive educational ideals and methods continued to inform postwar school design as advocated by educational and architectural popular press Amy Ogata r ecognized that historians of education are still divided on the real impact of progressivism on American education, but its effect on the architectural discourse was profound and enduring.20 Application of wartime technologies to modern schools reinforced the United States as a global power. Schools were being featured in widely published architectural and design periodicals. Elementary schools in New York and Illinois would become precedents for the nation and the world. Ogata argues that They were creat ed primarily for white middleclass children, yet were promoted as model solutions to a nationwide crisis.21 Architectural Forum showcased many school designs, as architects seized the opportunity to create new schools to solve the need for the increase i n Americas youth. The widespread publicity of Crow Island in architectural and educational periodicals helped transform the little known firm of Perkins and Will into the sought after architects for school design. Their holistic approach of observing classroom behavior, analyzing the context of the site, and interviewing key stakeholders in the education system raised awareness for the potential of what a public school could be. 19 Stephen G. Weiss, Anthony A. DeFalco, and Eileen M. Weiss, Progressive = Permissive? Not according to John Deweysubjects matter! Essays in Education 14 (2005): 2 20 Amy F. O gata, Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Schools, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 564. 21 I bid, 563.
36 The popularity of Crow Island could be seen in schools throughout the nation. What was a design created for a specific site and client was being replicated in form, with the prominent chimney being one of the key indicators. Not all school districts could afford to hire a well known firm to design their school, and instead sought the g uidance and inspiration of architectural periodicals and books such as Schools: an instructional and illustrated guide on building a school More affluent communities were able to hire firms such as Perkins Wheeler and Will to create a customized design f or their community. One of these communities was the town of Scarsdale, New York. Opened in 1953 and located on a 22 acre site, Heathcote Elementary School was one of the most lavish and expensive elementary schools built in the United States22 at a cost of $1,094,821.23 Similar in the concept of Crow Island, but different in plan, Heathcote was organized in a cluster plan. This plan consisted of central commons area such as the library, playroom, and auditorium, and branched off through colorful corridors into three clusters of classrooms (Figure 2 6) Each cluster housed four hexagonal classrooms situated around a common area (Figure 2 7) Similar to Crow Island, a wet area for messy hands on activities was incorporated into the classroom; however restroo ms were taken out of the individual classroom and placed in the common area in each cluster. Creating a parallel between the classroom and home environment was an important element, just as it was in the design of Crow Island. One story classrooms had ful l window walls with ceilings that sloped upward toward the glazing, emphasizing 22 Amy F. Ogata, The Heathcote School: An Object Lesson, Senses & Society 4 (2009):347 accessed September 12, 2012, doi: 10.2752/174589209X12464528171978. 23 Heathcote: A Pioneering School in Plan and Atmosphere. The Archit ectural Forum July 1954, 99.
37 the openness and sloping down into the interior of the classroom creating a cozy atmosphere.24 Desks, chairs, and other furniture are scaled for use by the children. A 1954 arti cle on Heathcote in Architectural Forum praises the library and auditorium spaces as not scaled down versions of high school but freshly designed for little children.25 The lightweight furniture could be repositioned to suit different classroom activities (Figure 2 8) Outdoor learning spaces, an interior courtyard, and a hearth surrounded by cushions assisted the transition from home to public school. Colored glass bathed the school in cheerful shades of orange, greens, and blues, and corals painted in the playroom framed the surrounding landscapes. Cafeterias were not yet incorporated into the school, as it was the school policy to send children home midday for lunch. Careful consideration was given to the organization of the classrooms as well. The background of the student, neighborhood they were from, and the teachers they worked well with were all considered when determining a students placement in the school.26 Despite progressive education falling out of favor for many in the postwar era, Heathcote embodied progressive values of discovery, aesthetic appreciation, and a wholesome sense of security.27 With the postwar increase in birthrate and subsequently the increase in children entering the public school system, there was a strain on the existing nu mber of school buildings. Many school districts were unable to construct new buildings like Heathcote, 24 Heathcote: A Pioneering School in Plan and Atmosphere. The Architectural Forum July 1954, 103. 25 I bid, 104. 26 R. Thomas Hille, Modern S chools: A Century of Design for Education (Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2011), 270. 27 Amy F. Ogata, The Heathcote School: An Object Lesson, Senses & Society 4 (2009):347 accessed September 12, 2012, doi: 10.2752/174589209X12464528171978.
38 and instead installed temporary classroom structures out of army barracks and other inexpensive, mass produced materials. Studies on health during the war transferred over into studies on lighting and classroom environments. Architects throughout the nation were devising innovative techniques to incorporate materials such as concrete, glass, and steel into progressive school d esigns Local Context Public sch ools served as key indicators of the success of a community and the larger events occurring in the nation. Philip H. Hiss III (19 101988) chair of the Sarasota Board of Public Instruction knew that in order for a county to have a good school system, it must have good sch ool buildings He reiterated the point when he stated, By having better schools we can attract the kind of people we want in our city and country. 28 Sarasota was affected much like the rest of the United States after the end of World War II. The Great Depression, initiated in 1929, made Americans unsure of their future and reserved in many aspects of life. After World War II, s oldiers moving back to the states wanted their piece of the American Dream: move into the suburbs, own a home, and start a family.29 The af fordability of the automobile, creation of ample highways, and many females returning to a domestic role in society helped achieve this dream. The most apparent sign of postwar optimism in America was the b aby b oom. In a set of less than ten years, the number of annual births in the United States would 28 Hiss S ays Some School Buildings in Bad State. Sarasota HeraldTribune, August 13, 1953, 12. 29 David Halberstam, The Fifties (New York: The Random House Publishing Group, 1993), 130.
39 jump from 2,559,000 in 1940 to 3,632,000 in 1950.30 Within five years of being born, most children would enroll in public school. The schools constructed prior to WWII were in no way prepared to meet the nee ds of this many children. Counties all over the nation had poorly maintained schools as a result of the depression, and most materials and efforts that could have been donated to war efforts were. This case holds especially true in Sarasota County, Florida. Located along the Gulf Coast of Florida and boasting a year round tropical climate, Sarasota was the perfect location for permanent and seasonal winter residents alike. Between 1940 and 1960, Sarasota would grow by 62,789 residents.31 The pleasant climate increase in construction, and postwar optimism would create the perfect formula to attract a series of up and coming architects looking to experiment with progressive forms and new technologies. One of the first architects to apply regional design techni ques to modern buildings in Sarasota was architect Ralph Twitchell (18901978) Twitchell joined forces with a young architect from Alabama Polytechnic Institute, Paul Rudolph (19181997) in 1941. Together they would create some of the best examples of th e group who would come to be known as the Sarasota School of Architecture. The work of Twitchell and Rudolph received national attention with publications in architectural periodicals. Rudolphs pen and ink rendering technique translated beautifully into the periodicals, along with many of their projects being photographed by Ezra Stoller, thanks to Rudolph. Learning of the progressive designs through these magazines, Jack West 30 Live Births and Birthrates Per Year, Infoplease accessed January 5, 2013, http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0005067.html 31 Florida United States Census Bureau, accessed January 5, 2013, http://www.census.gov/population/www/censusdata/cencounts/files/fl190090.txt
40 (19222010) a graduate of the Yale University School of Architecture, decided this was where he wanted to start his career (Figure 2 9) He showed up to the doorstep of the Twitchell and Rudolph office one morning, greeted by Ralph Twitchell. It just so happene d that Twitchell had fired their only draftsman the day before, and with Wests willingness to work for $35 a week, he was hired as their new draftsman on the spot.32 Twitchell primarily enjoyed the construction aspect and left Rudolph with much of the design, although not according to Twitchell. Twitchell and, especially, Rudol ph had become friendly with Philip Hiss. Hiss moved to Sarasota in the late 1940s after already traveling the world, taking photographs, and writing books. Hiss was a visionary who became an unofficial spokesperson for the Sarasota S chool architects. Through his development company, Hiss organized the talents of young architects to assist with the design of modern houses as part of his Lido Shores development These relationships would prove valuable as Hiss shifted his focus from residential homes to public schools (Figure 2 10) Developer and designers alike, all shared a common desire to use new technologies created during the Second World War as well as emphasize a connection to the exterior and work with the warm Florida Gulf environment. Se veral of these architects, such as Paul Rudolph who designed the Umbrella House located adjacent to the Hiss Studio on Lido Shores, would later design Riverview and Sarasota High School as part of Hiss Public School Program (Figure 2 11) In this period o f Sarasotas history, the number of classrooms could not keep up with the number of children attending school. In 1954, enrollment in the Sarasota 32 Jack West, The Lives of an Architect (Sarasota: Coastal Pr inting, Inc., 1988), 29.
41 County public schools jumped to 5,837students, an increase of 541 pupils from the prior year.33 By 1958, the t otal enrollment in the countys public school system had increased to 10,639 students.34 As a result, school maintenance and quality of education both through environment and curriculum suffered. Hiss was appalled at the condition of the classrooms and, as a dare, decided to run for a seat on the Sarasota County Board of Public Instruction in 1952. With strongly held beliefs about the significant role of education in creating a better America, Hiss was not going to allow poorly functioning schools represent his term. Over the next two terms ( totaling eight years ) Hiss oversaw the creation of nine new schools and additions (Table 21) He was able to secure over $4 million in school bonds voted for by the tax payers of Sarasota, which would provide tremendous assistance with the development of these schools. Although the school board was e ngaging architects for new schools, the plans for the schools were traditional in design. Hiss encouraged forward thinking architects to submit designs, but they were turned down because the plans smacked of progressive education and the board thought these new schools would be more expensive to build than a traditional one.35 He then was granted the chance to prove his point with Brookside Junior High School. Brookside was designed by Ralph and William Zimmerman. The twelveclassroom school, designed by Ralph and William Zimmerman, showcased floor to ceiling school windows, projected by an 8ft. overhang to keep sun from desks, but the most persuasive element for the s chool board was that the 33 School Chairman Blasts Destructive Criticism. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 10, 1953, 12. 34 School Enrollment Up. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 04, 1958, 1. 35 Sarasota Success Story. Time Magazine, December 28, 1958, 35.
42 completed school was $40,000 under budget.36 Commenting on his success at convincing the school board that modern school design was the right choice, Hiss said Their minds had been closed since the age of seven. I finally got them sane. After that, I felt like Machiavellis brother. It was like taking candy from a baby.37 The collection of ill maintained and overcrowded schools would soon grow into a showcase of school architecture.38 Similar to Philip Hiss brothers William Henry and Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt also knew that the success of a community was connected with the education of its youth. After recently moving to Sarasota, brothers William Henry Vanderbilt III and Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt Jr. started their own development and cattle ranch, Cape Haze, at the south of Sarasota County in the community of Englewood. Shortly after, Williams son needed to enroll in school. Dissatisfied with the conditions of Englewood Elementary School, the Vanderbilt family pledged an annual grant of $20,000 to ward pre design research and programming for the construction of a new facility, a new library and raising teachers salaries of the next four years.39 Dr. Robert Anderson from the Harvard Graduate School of Education had been hired to c onduct an assessment of the Englewood school. Too far away to oversee the grant himself, Anderson asked his colleague, Dr. John I. Goodlad if he would be interested in the position.40 Goodlad had attended the University of Chicago from 19471949, the same u niversity where Dewey 36 Sarasota Success Story. Time Magazine, December 28, 1958, 35. 37 Ib id 38 I bid 39 The Full Text of the Report. The Englewood Herald, May 16, 1958, 14. 40 John I. Goodlad, Romances with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 218.
43 established the Chicago Teaching Laboratory and had left forty three years earlier (Figure 2 12) .41 Together Goodlad and Anderson published Nongraded Elementary School in 1959, which would in part reflect upon Goodlads work at Englewood Elementary School. Andersons report suggested that all but one of the entire teaching staff and the principal be replaced.42 Goodlad implemented one of the first examples in the nation of a team teaching approach to a nongraded curriculum.43 As part of the Vanderbilt grant, and to aid in the success of the pedagogical approach, Goodlad hired an accomplished teaching staff, many of which had or were working on Masters degrees. Although initiated in the 1928 school building, the pedagogy set forth by Dr. G oodlad was able to thrive in the open plan addition designed by architect Jack West (Figure 2 13) The selection of West for the project was made possible through the Sarasota Public School Program led by Philip Hanson Hiss, III. Working with the input of Dr. Goodlad, Jack West developed an open plan school with folding accordion walls and movable furniture to customize each learning experience (Figure 2 14) .44 Englewood would become one of the first elementary schools to employ the design of a n open plan sc hool for a nongraded, team teaching curriculum. Englewood Elementary School was not Jack Wests only contribution to the Sarasota Public School program. His firm of West and Waters was hired with Bolton 41 A Portrait of John Goodlad, ASCD accessed January 29, 2013, http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational leadership/mar95/vol52/num06/A Portrait of JohnGoodlad.aspx 42 John I. Goodlad, Romances with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 219. 43 Ibid, 234. 44 Jack West The Lives of an Architect (Sarasota: Coastal Printing, Inc., 1988), 50.
44 McBryde for both the design of additions to both Englewood Elementary School and Fruitville Elementary school. As recalled in his autobiography, Jack West took the lead on both designs where McBryde graciously accepted his designs for the master plans of Englewood and Fruitville.45 Dr. John Goodlad worked with West to design what is believed to be the first school in the nation to support a team teaching approach. West employed some of the design features from Englewood into that of Fruitville in hopes if encouraging experimentation with the teachers. In a 2008 interview, West said that this was a mistake. He said that Englewood had the Vanderbilts to hire Dr. Goodlad, but Fruitville didnt have any Vanderbilts. Without the direction of Goodlad and handpicked principal and teaching staff excited about team teaching and nongrading, like Englewood, the Fruitville teachers were totally opposed to team teaching. West goes on to clarify that Fruitville had rural oriented teachers and an unsophisticated principal, where the last thing they wanted was a pr ogressive school. 46 Unfortunately, the entire master plan of Englewood Elementary School was unable to be fully realized. Only phase one was completed, which consisted of one of the three proposed classroom nests and the cafetorium: the dining assembly building. The classroom addition at Englewood Elementary School still exists, but with permanent walls now subdividing the original open plan. The cafetorium was demolished between 2002 and 2004 to make way for a parking lot (Figure 215) Although altered, the Englewood Elementary addition has, as of now, avoided a fate that four of the Sarasota Public School Buildings have already suffered due to lack of maintenance, among other factors : demolition. 45 Jack West, The Lives of an Architect (Sarasota: Coastal Printing, Inc., 1988), 49. 46 West, Jack. Interview by Morris Hylton III and Lorrie Muldowney. Personal interview. Sarasota, 2008.
45 Lack of maintenance in a postwar public school is not a case unique to Sarasota. In 2011, Phillis Wheatley Elementary School was demolished. Constructed in 1954 in New Orleans, Ph i llis Wheatley Elementary was designed as a segregated school. Utilizing modern technologies, this school incorporated regionalism into its design and the school rested upon pillars that kept it above any flood zones (Figure 2 16) Even in 2005, the school survived the flooding brought on by Hurricane Katrina. Despite surviving the storm and serving as an excellent example of postwar sc hool design, the school was neglected. The school district did not think that the school could function in todays society, even though members of the community joined hands around the building to show their belief in the significance of the school (Figure 2 17) .47 It is not only the responsibility of this thesis to make apparent how the i nnovative classroom design of Englewood supported the progressive nongraded teaching pedagogy of John I. Goodlad, but to also provide a form of written documentation exp laining the significance of this structure to education and design in Sarasota, Florida, and the United States. The significance of these Sarasota public schools should not wait to be shared until a building is slated for demolition or major alteration. By then it is often too late, as seen in the case of Riverview High School. Despite international attention and an adaptive use charrette, Riverview was suffering from inconsiderate alteration and deferred maintenance, and was demolished for a parking lot in 2009.48 The concluding chapter of this thesis will elaborate on potential methods for advocating the significance of Englewood Elementary School to its stakeholders. 47 Historic Phillis Wheatley Elementary School torn down in Treme, Greater N.O ., accessed January 5, 2013, http://www.nola.com/education/index.ssf/2011/06/historic_phillis_wheatley_elem.html 48 Christopher J. Berger, Historic Preservation and the Sarasota School of Architecture: Three Case Studies (Master thesis, University of Florida, 2010), 119.
4 6 Table 2 1. Sarasota Public School Program 19541960 School Name Architects Date Brooksi de Junior High Ralph and William Zimmerman 1955 Alta Vista Elementary Addition Victor Lundy 1957 Fruitville Elementary Addition Bolton McBryde with West and Waters 1957 Venice Junior High Mark Hampton; John Crowell Associate 1957 Booker Elementary Ralp h and William Zimmerman 1957 Brentwood Elementary Gene Leedy; William Rupp Associate 1958 Riverview High Paul Rudolph 1958 Englewood Elementary Addition Bolton McBryde with West and Waters 1959 Sarasota High Addition Paul Rudolph 1959
47 Figure 21. Typical one room classroom plan. Walter W. LaChance, Schoolhouses and their Equipment (NiagraFalls, N.Y., 1925), fig. 6 Figure 22. One of John Deweys Laboratory School classroom Courtesy of John Dewey and Progressive Educationedu 405 website.
48 Figure 23. Coro na Avenue classroom. McQuade, Schoolhouse, 212 Figure 24. Crow Island plan. Courtesy of the Roger Shepherd website.
49 Figure 25. Crow Island classroom. Courtesy of the Perkins and Will website. Figure 26. Rendering of Heathcote Elementary. Architectural Forum 101 (July 1954) ; courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library, University of Florida.
50 Figure 27. Plan of Heathcote Elementary. Architectural Forum 101 (July 1954) ; courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library University of Florida. Figure 28. Heathcote Elementary School classroom. McQuade, Schoolhouse 213.
51 Figure 29. Jack West. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources Figure 210. The opening of Booker Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County History Center Newspaper Collection
52 Figure 211. Riverview High School classroom. Courtesy of Architectural Forum 110 (April 1959) ; courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library, University of Florida Figure 212. John. I. Goodlad. Courtesy of Connexions website.
53 Figure 213. 1928 Englewood Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources Figure 214. Children during class at Englewood Elementary. Architectural Forum 110 (February 1959) ; courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library, University of Florida.
54 A B Figure 215. The replacement of the Englewood cafetorium for a parking lot. Designed by author using imagery data from Sarasota County GIS website.
55 Figure 216.Early photograph of Phillis Wheat ley Elementary School. McQuade, S choolhouse, 234 Figure 217. Community members showing their support for saving Phillis Wheatley Elementary. Courtesy of World Monuments Fund website.
56 CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY The case study examined in this thesis is Eng lewood Elementary School located in Sarasota, Florida. Although situated in a remote part of Florida at the time, Englewood mirrored larger national developments in education al pedagogy and design. In an era where public school education in the United Stat es was shifting away from progressive teachings and more toward preparedness for the Cold War with an emphasis in math and science, the Englewood pedagogical experiment focus ed on the growth of the child as an individual and, ultimately, a productive member of a democratic society The methodology employed is a qualitative, case study analysis based on archival research including primary sources such as newspapers, periodicals, firsthand account essays, books, architectural drawings, and photographs. Qualit ative Case Study Analysis A qualitative case study analysis was selected for the methodology of this thesis. As Englewood Elementary was not only being studied in its physical context, but also its placement in time, it is important to perform an indepth study of the historical elements surrounding the project. Additionally, the precedents used in formulating this study used similar forms of research, and provide guidance for the formulation of this exploration. To understand the factors that played a rol e in the influence of Englewood, analysis was first given to subjects that relate to the project These subjects include d a thematic study of postwar modernism, modern schools, and a look into the teaching approach of Dr. Goodlad. After understanding these themes and approaches, a chart was created to aid in the determination of themes that could be applied to Englewood Elementary, which can be found in Chapter 4. Four themes were established and both
57 socio cultural and design elements of the project were c ategorized into a table. The following are the models considered in this study. Thematic Analysis and Modernism Design is not constructed in a vacuum. Every location, zoning board, and stakeholder, among other factors, has s ome degree of influence on every project and its context. In addition to the formal and stylistic qualifies, it is important to analyze the contextual determinants that shape a design. Scholar Sarah Williams Goldhagen identifies this problem when she analyzes the postwar modern movement, As a guide to architectural culture, style misleads, then, for two reasons. First, architects who employed in their buildings a common set of motifs are sometimes motivated by divergent and incompatible aspirations. This was the case for the modern movement in the interwar period. Second, architects who are working through the same set of fundamental themes often adopt dissimilar positions on them, and therefore design buildings that look extremely different one another. This was the case for postwar moder nism as a whole.1 The term style implies that only physical features classify a structure. Instead of solely relying on tangible features, a discourse should be created between sociocultural events and the traditional physical classifications. There wer e common architectural materials on many of the structures created after World War II, however, in order to obtain a more indepth understanding of how this post war architecture came to be, a thematic approach must be formulated. In her study on the postw ar effects on the modern movement, Goldhagen made note that although the modern movement had been studied in physical form, a framework has not been established that would help 1 Sarah Williams Goldhagen, Coda: Reconceptualizing the Modern, in Anxious Modernisms: Experimentation in Postwar Architectural Culture. ed. Sarah Wil liams Goldhagen et al. (Montreal: Canadian Centre for Architecture, 2000), 319
58 make sense of modernism in architecture.2 Goldhagen recognized a set of criti cal themes that through her research best encapsulate the postwar modern movement. These themes are as follow: Popular Culture/ Everyday Life Anti Architecture Democratic Freedom Homo Ludens Primitivism Authenticity Architectures History Regionalism/ Pla ce Goldhagen offers an alternative approach which includes a framework for assessing both the historic reality and complexity of the modern movement.3 By abandoning the organizing principle of style, the context and wider range of influencing factors o n the design are able to be more fully understood and explored.4 Thematic Analysis of School Design Narrowing the scope of the modern movement, architect and scholar Thomas Hille establishes a series of six themes to describe modern schools ranging from t he early 1900s to today. In his book, Modern Schools: A Century of Design for Education he presents cases of modern schools both in Europe and America ranging from the 1903 to 2009. In doing so, he recognizes several recurring design themes that reflect 2 Sarah Williams Goldhagen, Coda: Reconceptualizing the Modern, in Anxious Modernisms: Experimentation in Postwar Architectural Culture. ed. Sarah Williams Goldhagen et al. ( Montreal: Canadian Ce ntre for Architecture, 2000), 302 3 I bid 4 I bid, 14
59 the continuing influence and relevance of the modern educational program.5 He then identifies a connection between the schools that best represent these themes and the schools that exemplify architectural innovation.6 From the larger list of themes, he selects six that maintain relevance throughout the years and are able to adjust to time and place. According to Hille, the following common design themes are among the most important :7 School Identity Community Variety of Learning Venues Student and Teacher Interaction Flexibility and Adaptability Quality of Learning Environment After preforming his research, Hille observes that the themes describing the preand postwar eras are directly relatable to the design practices of schools today.8 (19) John I. Goodlad Teaching Approach The annual pledge from the Vanderbilt family required a director to ensure that the familys goals for Englewood Elementary School were being met. Dr. Robert Anderson from the University of Chicago was hired to conduct an assessment of the school. While studying at the University of Chicago, he met Dr. John I. Goodlad. When Anderson accepted that he lived too far away from Englewood to successfully oversee the Vanderbilt grant, he offered the position to Goodlad, who had been serving as 5 R. Thomas Hille, Modern Schools: A Century of Design for Education (Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2011), 17. 6 Ibid. 7 Ibid. 8 Ibid, 19.
60 director of the Emory University division of teacher education.9 Goodlad eagerly accepted the offer. At Englewood, he was able to both improve the school and experiment with a nongraded, team taught curriculum. Over time, Goodlad wrote many papers, articles, and books on the concept of nongrading. One particularly useful account is not in a book by him, but about him. The Beat of a Different Drummer contains stories of the experiences from the former principal, John Bahner, and M. Frances Kl ein, who was the only teacher in Dr. Andersons report who didnt need to be fired.10 Their account of the changes Englewood went through with the initiation of the Vanderbilt Grant are important to this thesis, as no new interviews were conducted. Creati ve curriculum development for a variety of school purposes Individualized education A team approach to educational leadership School as the unit of change Nongrading Team teaching Education as a moral and ethical enterprise Selection of Site Englewood Ele mentary School is a prime example of innovative architecture being developed to support a nontraditional curriculum in postwar America. As a precursor to the open plan schools and pedagogy of the 1960s, Englewood was one of the more experimental of the buildings of the Sarasota Public School Program. All of the schools of the program led by Philip Hiss employed modern design, but, unlike Englewood, not all of the projects included a progressive approach to teaching. T he vision for Englewood, as proposed by donors William H. and Alfred G. Vanderbilt was to 9 John I. Goodlad, Romances with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 216. 10 M. Frances Klein and John M. Bahner, Curriculum Change in Concert: The Englewood School Project, in The Beat of a Different Drummer: Essays on the Educational Renewal in Honor of John I. Goodlad, ed. Kenneth A. Sirotnik et al. (New York: Peter Lang, 1999)
61 create the strongest possible instructional program for the boys and girls of Englewood. 11 T o help achieve this goal, Dr. John I. Goodlad was hired to reinvent learning at Englewood. In his autobiography, Englewood Elementary architect Jack West stated, Englewood Elementary School thus became one of the first if not the first, in the United States, to be designed specifically for team teaching in a flexible ungraded curriculum. Classroom sizes were varied to include both large and small teaching groups. Movable partitions allowed classes to be combined to free teachers for other assignments. Storage and furnishings were on casters to facilitate the creation of special work settings. A covered outside play/assembly area and partitions contiguous to the classroom extended activities to low cost exterior areas, practical because of Floridas climate.12 Goodlad introduced the concept of a nongraded curriculum where kindergarten through sixth graders were taught by teams of teachers who closely monitored and assessed individual student progress. Students matriculated at their own rate. Englewood was designed to support the curriculum that had been in the process of development over the few years prior to the construction of the addition. According to Dr. Goodlad, not only was Englewood one of the first schools designed for team teaching in the United States, it was also one of the first two schools in the nation to employ a recognized team teaching approach.13 T he architect for the school, Jack West, was a notable member of the Sarasota School of Architecture. He designed the first public building of the Sarasota School of Architecture, the Nokomis Beach Pavilion, 11 The Full Text of the Report. The Englewood Herald, May 16, 1958, 14. 12 Jack West, The Lives of an Architect (Sarasota: Coastal Printing, Inc., 1988), 49. 13 John I. Goodlad, Romance s with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 234.
62 which was restored in 2008.14 The Englewood additi on designed by Jack West was intended as only the first phase. Eventually, two more nests of classrooms were planned to be constructed, along with a covered play area, none of which were realized. Fruitville Elementary School, also designed by the firm o f Bolton McBryde working with West and Waters mimicked that of Englewood, but used a traditional curriculum. The Fruitville addition was completed prior to Englewood, but the open, flexible design was not to support a nongraded curriculum. The elements were there however if the school decided to go that route. Critical Themes Through a content analysis of primary sources such as newspapers, architectural periodicals, books, and an interview, this thesis identifies a series of themes that can be used to analyze postwar, modern school design in the United States. The content analysis and literature review brought forth a series of anticipated themes for the analysis of Englewood Elementary such as regionalism, democracy, and identity. In part by adapting the themes previously established by Ogata and Hille, and the recognition of a new theme, a series of four final applied themes were set. Through the application of these themes, the complexity of the influencing factors upon the school can be recognized. The school itself had a variety of learners from different backgrounds. The challenge was to create a school suited for all of them. Hiss said about Goodlad, The problems he had to overcome were brought about by the relatively remote location of the school and the peculiar socioeconomic makeup of 14 Nora L. Gallagher, Toward a Framework for Preserving MidCentury Modern Resources: An Examination of Public Perceptions of the Sarasota School of Architecture (Master thesis, Unive rsity of Florida, 2011), 39.
63 the community, which included a strange mixture of artists and Bohemian sophisticates, winter visitors, and back country crackers and cowhands. 15 The themes decided upon to describe the Englewood project and the in fluencing factors were set after extensive research had been performed on archival information pertaining to the school. This study compiled newspaper articles from the period recalling the publics perception of the school addition and teaching methods. T he Englewood project was thoroughly covered in the Englewood Herald, Sarasota Herald Tribune, and as far as Tampa, with occasional mentions in Architectural Forum and Architectural Record, to name a few. The visual references of this study are drawn from t he Sarasota County History Center, where images and original drawings from many of the Sarasota School of Architecture Architects are stored. The plans, elevations, and sections of the Englewood Elementary School addition were collected from a variety of t hese sources. The following chapter will go indepth into the application of the following themes. Democracy Identity Flexibility Engagement This study goes beyond the physical study of architecture to look into the contextual influences on the design of Englewood Elementary School. A study has already been performed on the common architectural principals produced by the members of the Sarasota School of Architecture by John Howey. As it applies to Englewood, these themes do not cover the intangible elements influencing the designs shaped by these architects. By going beyond the formalist approach to understand this 15 School Without Grades Has Parents Approval. St. Petersburg Times October, 5, 1960, 9.
64 school, the application of themes will provide a more holistic view of the buildings significance. Additionally, by studying not just the object, but also the context of Englewood, we are able to see its location on the site as well as its location in time.
65 CHAPTER 4 ENGLEWOOD ELEMENTARY This chapter presents the sequence of events leading to the implementation of the nongraded, team teaching curriculum employed in the flexible, open plan classrooms of Englewood Elementary. The series of themes presented in the methodology chapter will then be applied to Englewood, with specific instances being pulled from archival information sourced from new spaper articles, books, and interviews. History of Englewood Elementary School Described by Dr. John I. Goodlad as an isolated sliver of civilization,1 t he community of Englewood, Florida lies in two counties : Sarasota and Charlotte. Located far from major highways and fairly secluded, Englewood was home to small year round and seasonal populations. There were the rural fishermen, seasonal residents from the North and farmers. The majority of which sent their children to the Mediterranean revival style Englewood School, built i n 1928.2 The rural nature of the community was reflected in the pupils of Englewood. Some c hildren would use windows as doors and show up barefoot, ac cording to an account by Phili p Hiss chairman of the Board of Public Instruction in the latter half o f the 1950s (Figure 4 1) .3 The school was faced with a number of challenges. Shared by two counties, the school was often in need of funding to purchase new books and supplies In addition, the annual turnover of 1 John I. Goodlad, Romances with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 219. 2 Loretta Marie Muldowney, S arasota Countys School Building Program 19551960 (Master Thesis, University of Florida, 1999), 20. 3 School Without Grades Has Parents Approval. St. Petersburg Times October, 5, 1960, 9.
66 teachers placed Englewood in the education al doldrums.4 Understanding this, it would seem unlikely that Englewood would become support a very progressive and experimental educational program. A 1955 article from the Englewood Herald described the community as progressive yet conservative; it has just as many happy children as it has contented retired folks; it has modest homes and extensive estates; it has a colony into which you fit, whether you be an artist, a farmer, a merchant, a small town product or a glossy city slicker.5 One of the fam ilies was the Vanderbilts. In 1951, William H. and Alfred G. Vanderbilt moved just outside Englewood to start a cattle ranch and development by the name of Cape Haze.6 Having a son, William and his wife saw a need for improvement in the Englewood E lementar y School. To help this improvement happen, the Vanderbilts initiated a grant in 1953 that would supply $20,000 annually to the school, initially for four years. The funds were to go toward the development of a central library, providing a wide range of ins tructional materials, creating a strong arts and crafts program, attracting a strong teaching staff, and providing the children of Englewood with an improved instructional program which would bring school and community into a wholesome relationship.7 4 M. Frances Klein and John M. Bahner, Curriculum Change in Concert: The Englewood School Project, in The Beat of a Different Drummer: Essays on the Educational Renewal in Honor of John I. Goodlad, ed. Kenneth A. Sirotnik et al. ( New York: Peter Lang, 1999), 30. 5 This is Englewood.: The Englewood Herald Septem ber 2, 1955, 4. 6 Escalating Land Prices in Cape Haze, Dearborn Street and Olde Englewood Village, accessed February 1, 2013, http://oldeenglewood.com/site/index.php/history/englewoodechoes/252escalatingland prices in capehaze.html 7 The Full Text of the Report. The Englewood Herald, May 16, 1958, 14.
67 A director was to be appointed to oversee the improvements of the school The first director hired was Dr. W. T. Edwards, Professor of Elementary Education at Florida State University. Robert McGehee was hired as principal for the Englewood School in 1953. P hilip Hiss, one of the two republican members of the five person school board was not pleased with the decision. Hiss was enraged that members of the selection committee were from a radical school, Florida State University. When asked what he meant by radical, Hiss explained that he meant attempts in education to change from the old to the radically new and that the school board should decide what is going to be taught whether it is Americanism or socialism.8 In a postwar World War II and Cold War era a progressive school was not favored by the majority. Instead of experimenting with progressive learning approaches, creating a formula for an American student who would be mentally and physically stronger than one from the Soviet Union during the Cold W ar was the priority. Schools and the government were more interested in producing a standard student who would have strength in subjects such as math, science, foreign language, and physical education. If based on Hiss opinion at this time, it would appear that the future of the Sarasota Public School program did not look very hopeful. Perhaps because of Hiss loudly voiced opinions, or because of other societal pressures, Robert McGehee did attempt to teach students in a way that would lead to the eventual national recognition of the school. He did try to make learning appealing to the students by basing lessons on subjects that would interest them, but that is where 8 Hiss Raps School Selection Method. Sarasota HeraldTribune, June 03, 1953, 1, 5.
68 the progress stopped.9 Approximately less than five months after taking the position of pr incipal at Englewood Elementary School, McGehee stepped down due to nervous exhaustion.10 Sometime after McGehee resigned, but before 1955, Dr. Edwards also leaves the Englewood Project as director. To fill this open position, the Vanderbilts sought a dir ector from out of state. They selected Dr. John I. Goodlad, a graduate of the University of Chicago who had been serving as director of Emory Universitys division of teacher education and of the Agnes Scott Emory Teacher Education Program based out of A tlanta.11 Not only did Dr. Goodlad see that the library and other goals of the Vanderbilt Grant were achieved, he provided the vision of making Englewood one of the first schools in the country to employ a team t eaching, nongraded curriculum. Goodlad combi ned the research of his colleague, Dr. Robert Anderson, on team teaching with his own studies in nongrading to establish the pedagogical approach for Englewood E lementary S chool. T he Englewood Project was able to attract highly qualified teachers who woul d otherwise never consider moving to a small, rural school to teach. In a time when a Masters degree was not common among elementary school teachers, Dr. Goodlad secured many teacher s, most of which were working toward or had a Masters degree.12 The Vanderbilt grant also aided in attracting better educators by offering a higher salary than the average at the time. The Englewood Project quickly became a frequent topic in the local newspaper s, as well as in surrounding counties 9 Four Teachers Are Appointed For Englewood. Sarasota HeraldTribune July 8, 1953, 5. 10 School Head At Engle wood Resigns Post. Sarasota HeraldTribune, October 31, 1953, 12. 11 John I. Goodlad, Romances with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 216. 12 Teacher Appointments Announced. The Englewood Herald, August 23, 1957, 3.
69 Goodlad did not immediately implement a non graded curriculum. He slowly transitioned the classes while training the teachers at the same time. Because of overcrowding in the school, traditional classes and grades merged together and took advantage of all available space for teaching, including the auditorium.13 At the same time, the education system in Sarasota County as a whole was seeing major changes Philip Hiss was appalled at the physical state of the countys schools. The Sarasota public schools struggled to keep up with the i ncreasing demands for classroom space. For example, at Englewood Elementary in 1953, there were 13814 students, which would increase to 305 in 1958.15 The introduction of portable classrooms assisted to a certain extent, but the real solution would to be in the construction of new facilities (Figure 4 2) .16 In 1953 H iss made it his mission to see that architecturally progressive public schools be the future for Sarasota County. He challenged the rest of the school board to build facilities that broke away from tradition to form cluster plans similar to that of Heathcote Elementary in Scarsdale, New York (Figure 4 3) .17 Design features such as the cluster plan, large window walls that would connect to the outside, outdoor learning areas, and flexible furnishings were some of the physical characteristics from Heathcote that would later be incorporated into the Sarasota public schools. The board feared that the modern schools would be expensive, but Hiss argued that with postwar building 13 Two new teachers at local school. The Englewood Herald, January 17, 1958, 12. 14 Local Schools Enrolled 5, 837. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 10, 1953, 1. 15 School Enrollment Up. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 04, 1958, 1. 16 Temporary Classrooms. The Englewood Herald, September 27, 1957, 1. 17 Action Delayed on New School Here. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 12, 1953, 12.
70 materials and technologies, the schools would be less expensive than traditional ones. The completion of Brookside Junior High School in 1955 under budget addressed doubts the public and board may have had about the modern schools Hiss desired. And thus the beginning of the Sarasota County Public School Building Program was started with an emphasis, at least at the beginning, on progressive design, but not progressive education.18 Between 1954 and 1960, nine new schools and additions were created. Journalist and school design expert W alter McQuade described the change in the school boards attitude as, Having decided that Sarasota should provide better than minimum facilities for its children, the board took a crew of talented young local architects by the elbow and simply told them t o design schools different from the concreteblock boxes that have characterized the postwar Florida boom. Most of the architects had never before been given a school to design, for school building is a tough architectural specialty to crack. Dont just s it down and follow the requirements, the school board urged, give us buildings that will sing. 19 Englewood was one of the last of the Sarasota Public School Program facilities. Bolton McBryde was selected with the firm of West and Waters to design addit ions for Englewood and Fruitville Elementary schools. McBryde was known for his educational work, and Jack West was one of the up and coming architects who would later be known as a member of the Sarasota School of Architecture. Although associated on the projects, Jack West developed the designs that would be selected for the two schools. A master plan of Englewood was conceived where the 1928 school would eventually be demolished (Figure 4 4) The complete master plan included three classroom nests with 9 classrooms each, a cafetorium, an experimental education 18 McQuade, Walter. The school board that dared. The Architectural Forum 1959, 80. 19 I bid 79.
71 studio, an administration building, and a covered play area (Figure 4 5 and 46) .20 However, only the first phase was completed due to budget constraints. This phase consisted of the cafetorium (a dual purpose cafeteria and auditorium) and one of three proposed classroom nests (Figure 4 7 and 48) Unique to the rest of the schools in the program, West worked with Dr. Goodlad to develop a school that would support the needs of the curriculum. The end product had classrooms one thousand square feet in size, separated by movable soundproof dividers with other classrooms 700 square feet, making a flexible teaching program possible (Figure 4 9) .21 This was one of the first instances of an open plan s chool and the use of accordion walls (Figure4 10) Fruitville Elementary School was designed in a similar form as Englewood, although their teaching staff had not yet transitioned to a nongraded or team teaching curriculum (Figure 4 11) As a result, the school did not function as well with the teachers totally opposed to coinstruction as recalled by Jack West.22 Englewood Elementary School was the only product of the Sarasota Public School Program that successfully employed progressive teaching methods that were supported by the built environment. Although all of the Sarasota Public School P rogram schools were unique, they shared a common goal: to provide the best possible education in a clean and inspiring environment. Philip Hiss explained the unique q uality of the schools in a 1959 article, Why should each school be of original design?...Because schools are not built in a vacuum, but play a part in an existing social structure and act on it as well as being acted upon. Because each community has the r ight, 20 Eight New Schools in Sarasota County. The Florida Architect April 1959, 1523. 21 School Official Promises Classrooms. The Englewood Herald October 11, 1957, 6. 22 West, Jack. Interview by Morris Hylton III and Lorrie Muldowney. Personal interview. Sarasota, 2008.
72 indeed the responsibility, to do what is best for its own children, and to maintain its own individuality.23 As each of the schools were different, a common set of aesthetic qualities is not easily established. According to scholar Sarah Goldhagen, t he formalistic approach of qualifying physical design traits to define a group of buildings from the modern era is not the most complete approach.24 Instead, a thematic approach of tangible and intangible elements was compiled to describe the design and pedagogy of Englewood Elementary School. T he following chapter explores how these themes could potentially be applied to the other postwar schools in Sarasota, as well as the rest of the United States. Application of Themes As described in the previous method ology chapter, a series of four themes have been established to qualify Englewood Elementary within its context. In her assessment of modern architecture, scholar Sarah Williams Goldhagen recognizes that the traditional method of defining a style through physical features alone does not capture all of the influences upon postwar design. Instead, she proposes a discourse between socio cultural and design attributes that together represent the holistic approach that accounts for products of the modern movement. This approach allows influencing forces on design such as popular culture and democratic freedoms to help define a style as much as regionalism and materials used.25 Building upon the research of Goldhagen and other scholars who specialize in topics of post World War II architecture and school 23 Hiss, Philip H. It CAN Happen Here The Florida Architect April, 1959, 13. 24 Sarah Williams Goldhagen, Coda: Reconceptualizing the Modern, in Anxious Modernisms: Experimentation i n Postwar Architectural Culture. ed. Sarah Williams Goldhagen et al. (Montreal: Canadian Centre for Architecture, 2000), 302 25 Ibid, 15.
73 design, a series of anticipated themes were gathered, such as regionalism, democracy, technology, identity and flexibility. After a content analysis, an additional theme, engagement, has been included. These themes collectively describe topics from the teaching pedagogy, classroom design, functionality of spaces, to the involvement of the community. As such, the final sets of themes used for the analysis in this thesis were : Democracy, Flexibility, Identity, and Engagement. The following will go into further detail and recall events in the history of the Englewood project where the themes are clearly seen. A chart of this methodological approach as applied to Englewood can be found in Table 41. Democracy In an era where many schools were focusing on the Three Rs and subjects such as science and physical education to strengthen American youth mentally and physically during the Cold W ar, Englewood Elementary School adopted a progressive teaching approach. This approach implied democracy both in the forms of pedagogy and classroom design. Progressivism in design was favored over progressive approaches in education, where public schools were seen as a source for the cultivation of democracy.26 Dr. Goodlad conveyed the approach of the Englewood Project would create an opportunity for the children to receive the best possible education. The quality of the individual education of each student was important to the teachers of Englewood as well as Philip Hiss. Even with the increase in the number of 26 Amy F. Ogata, Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Schools, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 562.
74 students entering the public school program, a degree should not just equate with an attendance award.27 Hiss enforced his views on the school system when he said, The concept of free public school education for everyone is a mag nificent thing, but surely democracy in education does not require putting quantity above quality. The tendency in American schools has been to try to turn them out of the 12th grade with precisely the same amount of knowledge. Not only is this impossible of accomplishment, but it is in criminal disregard of the true meaning of democracy, which should mean equal opportunity for each child to develop to the utmost limits of his or her ability.28 Hiss wanted to avoid mass conformity in education and Englewood Elementary School was one of the best examples at solving that issue. This was achieved through the implementation of a nongraded academic structure. The school kept the labels of first through sixth grade, but within the grades there were designations of primary, primary intermediate, and intermediate.29 The stigma of being held back a grade was removed and children advanced in their studies at a rate that worked best for them. In order to make this approach function, the teaching staff had to be proper ly trained. Dr. Goodlad was proud in that the teaching staff represented a balance in teaching experience, preparation, interests, and men and women.30 These educators embodied the democratic approach they were teaching to Englewoods youth, both in their b ackgrounds and through the team teaching approach they employed. The design process for Englewood Elementary School also represented a democratic approach with the collaboration between Jack West and Dr. Goodlad. West 27 Stro de Censures Hiss For School Criticism. Sarasota HeraldTribune, June 20, 1953, 12. 28 Hiss Says U.S. Using Sputnik Scare To Get Control Of School Systems. St. Petersburg Times January 8, 1958, 11. 29 Hiss Cites Experiment At School Dedication. St. P etersburg Times February 11, 1959, 16. 30 Teacher Appointments Announced. The Englewood Herald, August 23, 1957, 3.
75 took into account classroom arrangements would work best to support the nongraded curriculum. The accordion folding walls allowed many combinations of classroom layouts possible (Figure 412) Th e furnishings were lightweight and on casters, allowing students and teachers to transform their learning environment Hiss stated that with the flexibility of the Englewood classrooms, the program has been geared to individual instruction for each child.31 The classrooms could be whatever the teachers needed them to be, resulting in an engaging lear ning environment for the student. Identity Adopted from the research of Thomas Hille in Modern Schools the theme of i dentity has been applied to the Englewood project. Hille recognizes school identity as reinforcement to a learning environments sense o f place and can be described as a schools physical context related to the community, neighborhood, or natural environment.32 Philip Hiss placed a strong emphasis on the identity of the Sarasota schools representing the community. The schools not only ser ved as a place to teach Sarasotas youth, but were a key to attracting the kind of people we want in our city and country according to Hiss.33 These people would, in turn, bring new vitality and strength and progress.34 This was especially the case at Englewood. Had it not been for both Englewood Elementary Schools representation of a progressive educational 31 Hiss Cites Experiment At School Dedication. St. Petersburg Times February 11, 1959, 16. 32 R. Thomas Hille, Modern Schools: A Centur y of Design for Education (Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2011), 17. 33 Hiss Says Some School Buildings in Bad State. Sarasota HeraldTribune, August 13, 1953, 12. 34 Hiss, Philip H. It CAN Happen Here The Florida Architect April, 1959, 14.
76 approach along with a modern school building, many people may not have decided to move to Englewood or teach at the school. For Hiss, schools had to be identified as inviting. The aesthetic appeal was a key part in the education of the student where Hiss thought students should be surrounded with good taste.35 It is evident why Englewood was the only school to have focused on a new educational program. The Englewood school was supported by the Vanderbilt grant and Dr. Goodlad, where Hiss was the champion for the entire school program. He did believe that the educational program was important, but more important was his idea that proper buildings them selves can open new horizons in education. The new Sarasota schools unquestionably attract both students and teachers: They invite rather than repel.36 One of the design features incorporated into Englewood that invited students were classroom nests. The master plan consisted of three nests that would have been inspired by more widely known schools with cluster plans that group classrooms together around a common area. Although only one of the classroom nests was constructed, it provided a sense of place and community for the teachers and students (Figure 4 13) The classrooms were comparable in size to the average home of the day, to aid in the transition to school for the young elementary students and match the scale of the surrounding context.37 Other ph ysical features made the design of Englewood Elementary School both aesthetically pleasing and ideal for the warm climate it was located within. Unavoidable by the Sarasota Architects, understanding of the tropical Florida Gulf Coast environment 35 Hiss Tells Board Sarasota Schools Top Bigger Cities. Sarasota Journal July 13, 1959, 7. 36 Hiss, Philip H. It CAN Happen Here The Florida Architect April, 1959, 14. 37 Contractor Starts Work on New School Building. The Englewood Herald, March 28, 1 958, 1.
77 needed to be incorporated into the school design. Aesthetic appeal may bring a child to school, but a classroom without proper ventilation would not help keep them there. As air conditioning units were not widely used or affordable at the time, the architects incorporated passive means of cooling into their designs. Operable window walls allowed classes to spill outside and connect to nature (Figure 4 14) .38 The sliding walls also promoted the passive cooling of the classrooms with the breeze. Additionally, the classro om nest was oriented North and South for light control.39 In addition to regional design, technology also fits into the overall idea of identity. Postwar building materials such as steel and large sheets of glass were used to create Englewood Elementary School at a low price that would require as little maintenance as possible. This allowed for efficiency in construction both through affordable materials as well as speed of building As Hiss initiated the building program over his outrage of the lack of maintenance of the earlier Sarasota schools, it was extremely important that these schools were able to look goo d for a long time. To stay up to date with larger educational trends was also worked into the design of Englewood. All new county public schools were wired for educational television where students were taught social studies and reading classes through a t elevision station based out of Tampa.40 Teaching students by television had become a nationwide phenomenon, a way to standardize 38 Using Environment as the third teacher was a progressive teaching t heory initiated by Loris Malaguzzi, founder of the Regio Emilia a pproach started in Italy in 1945. 39 Eight New Schools in Sarasota County. The Florida Architect April 1959, 20. 40 The Hagerstown Experiment. The Architectural Forum November 1957, 160165.
78 education of certain subjects across the nation, and the use of such could be seen in Jack Wests future renderings of Tuttle El ementary from the 1960s.41 Flexibility In order to grow from the strict, egg crate designs of preWorld War II classrooms, new school forms needed to be flexible and support the potential of new teaching approaches. Philip Hiss knew that for a student to develop to his or her highest potential, the assembly line approach needed to be abandoned for a flexible one.42 According to scholar Amy Ogata, Flexibility was both a desirable quality for the structural aspects of the building, embodied in open corridors, nonload bearing partitions, and zoned ventilation and heating systems, but it also included the provision of folding walls for small groups, moveable cabinets, and lightweight furniture deemed vital to new methods of instruction.43 The topic of flexib ility is an especially important theme when taking into account that it was one of the first schools to use a team teaching approach with a nongraded curriculum. With children matriculating at their own rate, a variety of classroom environments needed to be available. Hiss believed that the flexible nature of the classrooms encouraged the team teaching approach.44 The larger than normal classrooms were not an effort to fit more children because of overcrowding. Instead, the size was meant to allow an ease i n transition from small to large group activities. 41 School Opening Here Draws Record Classes. The Englewood Herald September 11, 195 9, 1. 42 Designs For Learning Open Nov. 15. St. Petersburg Times November 9, 1960, 20. 43 Amy F. Ogata, Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Schools, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 528. 44 Sarasotas Ne w Schools: A Feat of Economy and Imagination. Architectural Record, February 1959, 204.
79 Physical features such as the window walls created access to the outdoors (Figure 4 15) This provided teachers with two rooms of space. Jack West designed outdoor partitions contiguous to the classroom and a play area located under a covering to take advantage of Floridas climate with little additional cost (Figure 4 16 and 417) .45 West also incorporated storage and furnishings on casters to facilitate the creation of special work settings.46 The master plan of the school also provided flexibility where additional classroom nests could be added to th e north and south of the existing plan. This flexibility proved useful when Jack West was commissioned several years later to design an addition t o his original plan. These des ign features and pedagogical approach broke away from the traditional idea on what a school should be and demonstrated how the classroom could be a teaching tool along with other educational materials. Engagement At Englewood Elementary School, the relationship between the school and the community was just as important as the engagement of the student and teacher. Had the community not grown and the need for more classrooms surfaced, Englewood may not have been selected for the design of the classrooms and cafetorium by Jack West. If it werent for the engagement of the Vanderbilt family, donating a total of $210,000 toward the improvement of Englewood Elementary School, Dr. Goodlad and the exceptional teaching staff would not have been hired. The community members were interested in the progress of the Englewood project and were able to stay up to date 45 Jack West, The Lives of an Architect (Sarasota: Coastal Printing, Inc., 1988), 4950. 46 I bid
80 with the local newspaper articles. With such involvement, the cafetorium was designed not only to function for the students during the school day, but also as a community center (Figure 4 18) .47 Englewood principal John Bahner, hired by Goodlad, said that the school was always open to the public and encouraged parents to come see their children in action.48 The engagement between the students and teachers wi th a team teaching approach was questionable to some parents. Could two teachers work along with each other to plan one class? Hours of planning and strategizing were completed to ensure that the teachers worked together and knew how each student was progr essing. The account of a former teacher revealed that m uch thought was given to how each team and the entire school would assess the extent to which we were doing better than we had been in self contained classrooms. School was constantly evolving, improv ing on the past year.49 With a noticeable improvement in the Englewood students, parents and the rest of the community became more involved with the school in ways such as the Parent Teacher Association. To further gain the support of the community, Bahner stated that good schools create better citizens and increase property values. The wealth of a community is directly related to the education provided by that communitys schools.50 If the community of Englewood would engage with the elementary school, all parties would receive a benefit. 47 McQuade, Walter. The school board that dared. The Architectural Forum 1959, 8 4 48 School Sets Open House. The Englewood Herald, February 06, 1959, 1. 49 M. Frances Klein and John M. Bahner, Curriculum Change in Concert: The Englewood School Project, in The Beat of a Different Drummer: Essays on the Educational Renewal in Honor of John I. Goodlad, ed. Kenneth A. Sirotnik et al. ( New York: Peter Lang, 1999), 41. 50 Schools are Big Business Bahner Tells Rotary Club. The Englewood Herald, August 14, 1959, 1, 4.
81 The Englewood project is one that tells the story of a school in much need of attention. With the involvement of Dr. Goodlad, Philip Hiss, Jack West, and many others, the elementary school was able to succeed in what the V anderbilts originally sought to achieve. The school had an excellent teaching staff who taught in an unusual way at the time in an unusual building, and produced students who were able to learn at their own rate and achieve an education at the utmost of their abilities. Conclusion Although not every school was ready for team teaching, such as Fruitville, others utilized the approach after the success of the Englewood project. Englewood Elementary further influenced Jack Wests design of Tuttle Elementary Sc hool in 1960, which incorporated, and a team teaching approach. The support that the Englewood project possessed in the 1950s from the grant, Dr. Goodlad, and the teaching staff would soon weaken. Dr. Goodlad only stayed with the project for six years before moving to California for another opportunity, and Principal John Bahner left shortly after to pursue a career in higher education. Similar to how the teaching staff would once experience a high turnover because of the remote nature of the community, teacher now only stayed after a few years to also advance their education outside of Englewood. With so many changes, the curriculum of Englewood Elementary would eventually transition back to a traditional one, although it is difficult to find the exact date With th is transition, the flexible classrooms followed suit and permanent walls were installed and the diamond cafetorium identifying with midcentury modern design was replaced with a rectilinear one. Despite these changes, the classroom nest is still recognizable in form and well maintained. Chapter five will elaborate on the current
82 condition of the school and potential methods for advocating the significance of the school to ensure its longevity.
83 Table 42. Methodology Chart Theme Sociocultural/Int angible Elements Design/Tangible Elements Democracy Students advanced at their own rate Team teaching curriculum Collaboration between Dr. John I Goodlad and architect Jack West One of the first instances of students receiving free breakfast because they couldnt afford it Adjustable c lassrooms Mobile furnishings that allowed students and teachers to transform their learning environment Classrooms supported multiple functions Identity Philip Hiss believed that the school buildings and quality of education were one of the first impressions of a community. For Hiss, good schools meant modern schools with a good curriculum School matched the domestic scale of the suburbs Classroom nests, although open, gave a sense of place and community Master plan had three wings of classroom nests Operable window walls allowed classes to spill outside and connect to nature Regionalism was incorporated into the design with full height window walls Postwar technologies a nd building materials identified with the time
84 Table 42. Continued. Theme Sociocultural/Intangible Elements Design/Tangible Elements Flexibility Students were assigned to the level and teacher that worked best for them Furniture on wheels could be repositioned for each lesson Fol ding accordion walls allowed room size to be transformed Window walls allowed the easy transition from indoor classroom to outdoor learning area Engagement Hands on teaching approach encouraged children to work with one another Community classes were held in the library after hours Almost every step of the schools progress was told in the local newspaper Two local Vanderbilt brothers initiated an annual grant in 1953 of $20,000 for Englewood with the intent of attracting better teachers, developing a library, and creating a strong educational program. Cafetorium created a community stage for PTA meetings and school plays
85 Figure 41. Philip Hiss seated front row, center with the rest of the Sarasota Board of Public Instruction. Courtesy of Saras ota County Historical Resources Figure 42. Portable classroom at Englewood Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County History Center Newspaper Collection.
86 Figure 43. Aerial perspective of Englewood master plan. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources Figure 44. Master plan of Englewood Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources
87 Figure 45. Designation of classroom buildings. Architectural Record 110 (February 1959) ; courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Art s Library, University of Florida Figure 46. Covered walkway leading to cafetorium. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources
88 Figure 47. Plan and section of the Englewood Elementary School cafetorium. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Re sources Figure 48. Section through a Fruitville Elementary School classroom. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources
89 Figure 49. Floor plan for a typical classroom nest at Englewood Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County Histor ical Resources
90 Figure 410.Advertisement for folding accordion wall. The Nations Schools 61 ( January 1958) ; courtesy of the Education Library, University of Florida
91 Figure 411. Section through classroom nest. A rchitectural Record (February 1959) ; court esy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library, University of Florida. Figure 412. Flexible classroom space at Englewood Elementary School. The Florida Architect 9 (April 1959); courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library, University of Florida
92 Figure 413. Aerial view of classroom nest and cafetorium. The Florida Architect 9 (April 1959) ; courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library University of Florida Figure 414. Sliding glass window walls at Englewood. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources
93 Figure 415. Children playing outside at Englewood Elementary School. The Florida Architect 9 (April 1959) ; courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library, University of Florida Figure 416. Outdoor learning areas at Englewood Elementary School. Architectural Record (February 1959) ; courtesy of the Architecture and Fine Arts Library, University of Florida
94 Figure 417. Children playing outside at Englewood Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources Figure 418. Englewood Elementary School cafetorium. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources
95 CHAPTER 5 CONCLUSION Reflecting upon the Sarasota Public School Program, Philip H. Hiss stated, Mistakes were made. Dr. Harold Gores, president of Educational Facilities Laboratories of the Ford Foundation, was right when he pointed out that there was more architectural than educational innovation in the new Sarasota high schools. This was in no way the fault of the architects, but rather a failure to overcome resistance on the part of educators. The board was more successful with educational innovation in elementary schools and junior high schools.1 The n otoriety of the nine schools and additions was based primarily of the innovative and aesthetically pleasi ng architecture. Englewood was fortunate enough to have the guidance of Dr. John I. Goodlad and the financial support of the Vanderbilt grant, but with time, things changed. Although it is not known exactly when the nongraded curriculum was phased out, th ere are indicators that change was going to happen. In 1960, seven years after the start of the grant, the Vanderbilts decided to start tapering off their funding.2 Without the additional funding, it would be difficult to maintain the level of teaching staff. Additionally, by hiring such a high caliber of educator, many did not stay for more than a few years. For instance, in 1961, Englewood principal John Bahner, who was hired by Goodlad and saw the transition of the schools curriculum and facilities, lef t to become a member of the staff at Harvard University.3 Lee Zimmerman, the principal before John Bahner, also hired by Goodlad, ended her term to continue her studies in a doctoral program. Goodlad recalled that Nearly all of the teachers that Lee, John and I recruited were bitten hard by the learning bug and went 1 Hiss, Philip H, What ever happened to Sarasota? The Architectural Forum, June 1967, 70. 2 Report Scheduled On State P TA Meet. The Englewood Herald, January 05, 1960, 1, 2. 3 Cortes, Jo. The Englewood Scene. Sarasota Hera ld Tribune, May 28, 1961, 17.
96 on to doctoral level studies.4 The educator turnover rate that Englewood experienced years earlier prior to the Vanderbilt grant was still occurring, but now because the school encouraged t he educators to learn more. When Philip Hiss tenure as chair of the Board of Public Instruction was over, it signified the end of an era. At the cusp of a new decade, Sarasota County had to awaken to the times and desegregate schools and adjust to the revolution in culture in the 1960s. Architect Jack West would go on to design Tuttle Elementary School, the first elementary school of the 1960s in Sarasota. His first renderings of the project would fit in with the schools of the previous decade, employing futuristic shapes (Figure 5 1) Along with architect Mark Hampton, West went to visit Harvard and further learn about the concept of team teaching. This design for Tuttle incorporated team teaching, but was rejected by the new school board for being too unusual in form. West then proceeded to design a school using more regular forms, which was the constructed, and successfully employed the team teaching approach (Figure 5 2) .5 This school also used folding walls and incorporated educational television, as s een in Wests renderings of the school (Figure 5 3 and 54) The condition of the schools from the 19541960 building program is poor. Several of the schools have been demolished or severely altered over time. Air conditioning units, technological upgrades, and the increase in enrolled students have caused major changes to the original structures. The introduction of interstate 75 brought high traffic and an increase to the population density. What were once schools built in rural areas and new suburbs, became overcrowded and in need of maintenance. 4 John I. Goodlad, Romances with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 235. 5 West, Jack. Interview by Morris Hylton III and Lorrie Muldowney. Personal interview. Sarasota, 2008.
97 Although Hiss wanted the schools to be as maintenance f ree as possible, oftentimes low quality materials were used to construct the buildings. He even encouraged students to take time during the school day to help keep the campus clean.6 With the case of Englewood Elementary School, shortly after initial construction there were drainage issues around the cafetorium.7 However, materials such as concrete brick, and terrazzo were selected for E nglewood to be as maintenanceproof a structure as possible.8 Sometime between 2002 and 2004, the cafetorium building was demolished to make way for a parking lot. The classroom building still stands today. Although the folding walls have been removed an d permanent ones put up, the classroom nest designed by Jack West still resembles the original structure on the exterior. The clerestory windows still remain, but the glass sliding walls have been replaced with a combination of solid wall, window, and door (Figure 5 5) The transparency and connection to the outdoor second classroom has been reduced. The school as a whole appears to be well maintained and involved with the community (Figure 5 6) The engagement continues in modern day Englewood, reminisce nt of the Vanderbilts initiative, with an adopt a class option for those who want to help the school have the best educational materials possible.9 With the investment from the community, faculty, staff, parents, and students of Englewood, there is hope that the remaining classroom nest by Jack West can serve as a reminder 6 Hiss Distressed Over Condition of Schools. Sarasota HeraldTribune, June 02, 1955, 12. 7 Drainage Bad in Englewood School Areas. The Englewood Herald, September 25, 1959, 1. 8 Eight New Schools in Sarasota County. The Florida Architect April 1959, 20. 9Our Community Englewood Elementary accessed March 4, 2013, http://www.sarasotacountyschools.net/schools/englewood/interior.aspx?id=21170&ekmensel=77901891_ 86_0_21170_11
98 of the vision and hard work of those before them to make Englewood an excellent and forward thinking school. Advocating the Preservation of Postwar Public Schools T he identification of four overall themes encompassing tangible and intangible features of Englewood Elementary S chool provide the opportunity to start a conversation about the significance of the school and other schools from the postwar era. These themes, as described in chapter 4 are: Democracy Flexibility Identity Engagement The r ecognition of Englewood Elementary School s significance now overlaps with our natio n s sustainability efforts with buildings past With the majority of public schools in use today over fifty years old, it is more sustainable to update and repair these schools instead of demolish them. It can be argued that if the original intended pedagogy for a school is outdated, the school can no longer function. This is not the case, where Engle wood Elementary School has consistently provided an exemplary education to students, although non grading i s no longer used. The nature of educational pedagogy is constantly moving back and forth across the spectrum. This can be seen where the new Riverview High school, completed in 2009, uses a small learning community teaching approach. This pedagogical approach c losely resem ble s the team teaching approach used in Englewood Elementary almost six ty years ago. It is important to recognize this now, and that for schools to con tinue to function they must be maintained. In early March of 2013, the Clin ton Administration partnered with Green Schools to start the c ollection of data regarding the age off the nation s public schools
99 and cost of utilities and maintenance.10 This information will be extremely useful with determining if it is better to upgrade an older school or continue maintaining it. Building upon the alr eady established engagement between Englewood Elementary School and the community, there are several tools that could be used to advocate the preservation of the school (Figure 5 7) The first step would be sharing this history with faculty and staff of Englewood. Although some may be familiar with how the postwar school came to be, it is likely that most do not know of the team teaching approach developed at the school that was one of the first in the nation. They may also not know about design features that were once within the classrooms. With every generation, pieces of information are lost. Admittedly, there may be some bias as the researcher for thinking that the public schools in Sarasota built between 1954 and 1960 are interesting and beautiful. On the other hand, there are certainly people in Sarasota who think these same buildings are eyesores and need to be torn down, as seen in the fate of Riverview High, Brookside Junior High, Venice Junior High and Booker Elementary (Figure 5 8) As the Sarasota Public School program was primarily the vision of Philip Hiss, ther e we re some county residents who disliked the schools from the moment of construction. Elements of Sarasota High School, designed by Paul Rud olph, didn t function properly after opening. The public s opinion is one of the most important factors to account for when conveying the significance of a site. Desp ite opinion however, there is little to dispute that Englewood was one of the first two team taught schools in the United States, the other being directed by Dr. Robert Anderson, Dr. Goodlads colleague and who 10 Report: Half trillion need to update schools, AP, accessed April 1, 2013, http://bigstory.ap.org/article/r eport half trillion needupdateschools.
100 recommended he direct the Englewood project.11 Innovation in pedagogy and design make this school worth saving for future generations. The next step is to convey this history to the students of Englewood. Although to elementary age children, this information may at time seem boring, interpretive videos could be played during the history class portion of the day. Similar to career day, students could bring in their grandparents or other relatives who may have attended the school to pass down an oral history of how the school functioned. By bringing the history of the school to a personal level, the students could develop an emotional and well informed bond with the school so that when they grow up to be major stakeholders in the community, they will stick up for the longevity of this building. If success ful, similar initiatives could be us ed for the other schools of the building program in Sarasota. An emotional connection to a school could mean the possibility of gathering community members for cleanup days and in effect demonstrating the buildings im portance to community stakeholders who may not have grown up in Sarasota and dont know about its history. A strong connection between knowledge of the history of the schools, community members, and maintenance could prove critical step s in the endurance of the 1954 1960 public school program, and postwar public schools around the nation for that matter. Limita tions The greater part of data for this thesis was based upon archival information sourced from newspapers and periodicals of the era. It was fortunate that several articles were written directly by people involved with Englewood Elementary School and the Sarasota Public School Program; however, there is a certain amount of error 11 John I. Goodlad, Romances with Schools: A Life of Education (New York: McGraw Hill, 2004),234.
101 associated with newspapers. Human error can come into play when typing notes, for instance, in one article the heading reported an attendance of 294 students at Englewood Elementar y and then 249 students in the body text. Additionally, the school attendance data could vary by month with the influx of seasonal residents. With this being a history study the time frame studied occurred between fifty and sixty years ago. As s uch, it would have been difficult, and sometimes impossible, to interview people who were part of the Englewood Project. Outside of newspapers and periodicals, books by Dr. John Goodlad assisted with filling gaps of information, as well as an interview wit h Jack West conducted by Morris Hylton III. Without these sources it would have been difficult to know what Goodlad thought of Englewood or how the teachers at Fruitville Elementary perceived the team teaching method. Time and distance were also limiting factors in this thesis. Due to time constraints, only three trips were able to be conducted. During these trips, the majority of time was spent at the Sarasota County History Center. At the History Center, many bound newspapers, yearbooks, and loose files were reviewed. Unfortunately, if a second part to an article was overlooked and not photographed, that information could not be quickly retrieved. In some cases, major newspapers such as the Sarasota Herald Tribune and St. Petersburg Times had some issues scanned and available online, but not all. Also, as the community of Englewood is spread across two counties, there is the possibility that the Charlotte County archives contained information on Englewood Elementary School. One of the three Sarasota trips included a site visit to Englewood Elementary School. The existing conditions and state of the school were able to be quickly
102 assessed thanks to the hospitality of the current Englewood Elementary School principal, Mark Grossenbacher. There it was learned that an association of retired teachers from Englewood Elementary exists. For further research into the case of Englewood, it would be interesting to either interview in person, send out a survey, or present this research to the group and hold a forum to hear stories about the school when the nongrading and team teaching was put into effect. There are unanswered questions such as when did Englewood transition back to a graded curriculum, and why? and when were the folding walls taken down and permanent walls put up, and why? This thesis studies how Englewood Elementary School was one of the first schools to use a team teaching, nongraded curriculum with an open plan school, but these teaching techniques and school designs are not widely used today. A b etter understanding of the reasons contributing to this could help designers and educators learn what features could improve the learning environment today. Recommendations for Future Research This thesis was just the first step at looking into a series of themes to define an era of school design. As mentioned in several cases in the previous chapter, some of the themes adopted for this study can be applied to all nine schools and additions from the Sarasota postwar public school building program. The themes applied in this thesis are the most prevalent in the case of Englewood Elementary School, while other themes, such as regionalism, may be stronger in examples like Riverview High School Additionally, further research could build upon the themes in this study to find sociocultural as well as design similarities between the majority of schools constructed in the postwar era within the United States. By doing so, the holistic significance of these
103 seemingly unrelated schools can be shown to the nation in hopes of education others and preventing the demolition of structures that tell a part of our history.
104 Figure 51. Original rendering of Tuttle Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources Figure 52. Jack West rendering of the revised Tuttle Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources
105 Figure 53. Jack West rendering of Tuttle Elementary School. Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources Figure 54. Jack West rendering of Tuttle Elementary School Courtesy of Sarasota County Historical Resources
106 Figure 55. Exterior of Englewood Elementary School. Photograph by author. Figure 56. Outdoor corridor at Englewood Elementary School. Photography by author.
107 Figure 57. Sign at Englewood Elementar y School. Photograph by author. Figure 58. Riverview High School Before Demolition. Used with permission. Photograph by Andrew Moore. 2007 Andrew Moore.
108 LIST OF REFERENCES _____. Action Delayed on New School Here. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 12, 1953, 12. AP. Report: Half trillion need to update schools. Accessed April 1, 2013. http://bigstory.ap.org/article/report half trillion needupdateschools. ASCD A Portrait of John Goodlad. Accessed January 29, 2013. http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational leadership/mar95/vol52/num06/A Portrait of John Goodlad.aspx Baker, Lindsay. A History of School Design and its Indoor Environmental Standards, 1900 to Today, National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities (2012): 130. Berger, Christopher J. Historic Preservation and the Sarasota School of Architecture: Three Case Studies. Master thesis, University of Florida, 2010. Bradley, Wi lliam Scott. Perceptions About the Role of Architecture in Education. PhD diss., University of Virginia, 1994. Challenge Solution Crow Island School. Accessed January 5, 2013. http://rogershepherd.com/WIW/solution5/crow2.html _____. Contractor Starts Work on New School Building. The Englewood Herald, March 28, 1958, 1. Cortes, Jo. The Englewood Scene. Sarasota HeraldTribune, May 28, 1961, 17. Dearborn Street and Olde Englewood Village. Escalating Land Prices in Cape Haze. Accessed February 1, 2013. http://oldeenglewood.com/site/index.php/history/englewoodechoes/252escalating landprices in capehaze.html Design Share. Interview with Beth Hebert. Accessed January 17, 2013. http://www.designshare.com/index.php/articles/interview bethhebert/. ____. Designs For Learning Open Nov. 15. St. Petersburg Times November 9, 1960, 20. Dewey, John. My Pedagogic Creed. School Journal 54 (1897): 7780. _____. Drainage Bad in Englewood School Areas. The Englewood Herald September 25, 1959, 1. _____. Eight New Schools in Sarasota County. The Florida Architect April 1959, 20.
109 Englewood Elementary Our Community. Accessed March 4, 2013. http://www.sarasotacountyschools.net/schools/englewood/interior.aspx?id=21170 &ekmensel=77901891_86_0_21170_11 _____. Eight New Schools in Sarasota County. The Florida Architect April 1959, 20. _____. Four Teachers Are Appointed For Englewood. Sarasota HeraldTribune, July 8, 1953, 5. Goldhagen, Sarah Williams. Coda: Reconceptualizing the Modern. In Anxious Mo dernisms: Experimentation in Postwar Architectural Culture, edited by Sarah Williams Goldhagen and Rejean Legault, 301324. Montreal: Canadian Centre for Architecture, 2000. Goldhagen, Sarah Williams. Something to Talk About: Modernism, Discourse, Style. Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 64 (2005):144167. Goodlad, John I. Romances with Schools: A Life of Education. New York: McGraw Hill, 2004. Greater N.O Historic Phillis Wheatley Elementary School torn down in Treme. Accessed January 5, 2013. http://www.nola.com/education/index.ssf/2011/06/historic_phillis_wheatley_elem. html Halberstam, David. The Fifties New York: The Ramdom House Publishing Group, 1993. Harms, Willaim and Ida DePencier. Experiencing Education: 100 Years of Learning at the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools Chicago: The University of Chicago Laboratory Schools, 1996. _____. Heathcote: A Pioneering School in Plan and Atmosphere. The Architectural Forum July 1954, 98105. Hille, R. Thomas. Modern Schools: A Century of Design for Education. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2011. _____. Hiss Cites Experiment At School Dedication. St. Petersburg Times February 11, 1959, 16. _____. Hiss Distressed Over Condition of Schools. Sarasota HeraldTribune, June 02, 1 955, 12. Hiss, Philip H. It CAN Happen Here The Florida Architect April, 1959, 13. Hiss, Philip H, What ever happened to Sarasota? The Architectural Forum June 1967, 6673.
110 _____. Hiss Raps School Selection Method. Sarasota HeraldTribune, June 03, 1953, 1, 5. _____. Hiss Says Some School Buildings in Bad State. Sarasota HeraldTribune, August 13, 1953, 12. _____. Hiss Says U.S. Using Sputnik Scare To Get Control Of School Systems. St. Petersburg Times January 8, 1958, 11. _____. Hiss Tel ls Board Sarasota Schools Top Bigger Cities. Sarasota Journal July 13, 1959, 7. History Baby Boomers. Accessed January 15, 2013. http://www.history.com/topics/baby boomers. Howey, John. The Sarasota School of Architecture: 19411966. Cambridge: The MI T Press, 1995. Infoplease Live Births and Birthrates Per Year. Accessed January 5, 2013. http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0005067.html John Dewey and Progressive Education. Project #2. Accessed January 21, 2011. http://deweyprogressiveeducation.blogspot .com/. Klein, M. Frances, and John M. Bahner. Curriculum Change in Concert: The Englewood School Project. In The Beat of a Different Drummer: Essays on the Educational Renewal in Honor of John I. Goodlad, edited by Kenneth A. Sirotnik and Roger Soder, 2944. New York: Peter Lang, 1999. Kosnoski, Jason. Artful Discussion: John Deweys Classroom as a Model of Deliberative Association. Political Theory 33 (2005):654677. Lane, Robert Hill. The Progressive Elementary School. Cambridge: The Riverside Press, 1938. _____. Local Schools Enrolled 5, 837. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 10, 1953, 1. McQuade, Walter. The school board that dared. The Architectural Forum 1959, 84. Muldowney, Loretta Marie. Sarasota Countys School Building Program 19551960. Master Thesis, University of Florida, 1999. OConnor, Aidan. A Setting for Childlife: The New School in the United States. In The Century of the Child, edited by Emily Hall and Libby Hruska, 105 106. New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2012.
111 Ogata, Amy F. Building for Learning in Postwar American Elementary Schools. Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 67 (2008): 562591. Ogata, Amy F. The Heathcote School: An Object Lesson. Senses & Society 4 (2009): 347352. Accessed September 12, 2012. doi: 10.2752/174589209X12464528171978. Ornstein, A.C. 1994. School finance and the condition of schools. Theory into Practice, 33:118 125. _____. Report Scheduled On State P TA Meet. The Englewood Herald, January 05, 1960, 1, 2. Sarasota Archit ectural Foundation. Recommendations for Effective Rehabilitation. Accessed January 10, 2013. http://www.sarasotaarchitecturalfoundation.org/shs. _______. Sarasota Success Story. Time Magazine, December 28, 1958, 35. _____. Sarasotas New Schools: A Fe at of Economy and Imagination. Architectural Record, February 1959, 204. _____. School Chairman Blasts Destructive Criticism. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 10, 1953, 1 2. _____. School Enrollment Up. Sarasota HeraldTribune, September 04, 1958, 1. _____. School Head At Englewood Resigns Post. Sarasota HeraldTribune, October 31, 1953, 12. _____. School Official Promises Classrooms. The Englewood Herald, October 11, 1957, 6. _____. School Opening Here Draws Record Classes. The Englewood Her ald September 11, 1959, 1. _____. School Sets Open House. The Englewood Herald, February 06, 1959, 1. _____. School Without Grades Has Parents Approval. St. Petersburg Times October, 5, 1960, 9. _____. Schools are Big Business Bahner Tells Rotary Club. The Englewood Herald, August 14, 1959, 1, 4. Sherfy, Marcella and W. Ray Luce. Guidelines for Evaluating and Nominating Properties that Have Achieved Significance Within the Past Fifty Years. National Register Bulletin (1998): 1 18. _____. Strode Censures Hiss For School Criticism. Sarasota HeraldTribune, June 20, 1953, 12.
112 _____. Teacher Appointments Announced. The Englewood Herald August 23, 1957, 3. _____. Temporary Classrooms. The Englewood Herald, September 27, 1957, 1. _____. The F ull Text of the Report. The Englewood Herald, May 16, 1958, 14. _____. The Hagerstown Experiment. The Architectural Forum November 1957, 160165. _____. This is Englewood.: The Englewood Herald, September 2, 1955, 4. _____. Two new teachers at local school. The Englewood Herald, January 17, 1958, 1 2. Tyack, David. The One Best System: A History of American Urban Education. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1974. United States Census Bureau. Florida. Accessed January 5, 2013. http://www.census.gov/population/www/censusdata/cencounts/files/fl190090.txt Volk, Kenneth S. The Gary Plan and Technology Education: What Might Have Been? The Journal of Technology Studies 31 (2005): 3948. Weiss, Stephen G., Anthony A. DeFalco, and Eileen M. Weiss. Progressive = Permissive? Not According to John DeweySubjects Matter! Essays in Education 14 (2005): 1 21. Weisser, Amy S. Little Red School House, What Now? Journal of Planning History 5 (2006): 196217. Accessed October 23, 2011. doi: 10.1177/1538513206 289223. West, Jack. Interview by Morris Hylton III and Lorrie Muldowney. Personal interview. Sarasota, 2008. West, Jack. The Lives of an Architect Sarasota: Coastal Printing, Inc., 1988.
113 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Clarissa Carr was born and raised in Gainesvil le, Florida. Growing up, she would always image the potential of historic and vacant buildings. While in undergrad, she realized her passion for preservation thanks to her mentor, Marty Hylton. The summer of 2010 she had her first adventure fully immersed in preservation at the Preservation Institute: Nantucket. She graduated in 2011 from the Univers ity of Florida with a B achelor of D esign in in interior design and minor in landscape architecture. She graduated in the spring of 2013 with a Master of Interior Design with a concentr ation in historic p reservation. She plans to pursue a PhD in interior design at the University of Florida and eventually a career combining her interests and sharing her passion for design and preservation with others.