Schools In Focus Podcast

Schools in Focus

Schools In Focus is a podcast dedicated to the design, planning and management of educational facilities and campuses. Listen in as we chat with industry experts, facility managers, architects, security and safety professionals, and other thought leaders. Catch up on previous episodes below.

Mastering the Strategic Master Plan


When it comes to designing an educational facility, there's no such thing as "one size fits all." There’s a lot that goes into creating the strategic master plan for a school. Here to tell us more about that design process, both generally and specifically, is Elie Newman, Senior Principal at BNKC Architects, based in Toronto, Canada.

Duration: 55 min

Talking Campus Security with Mitch McKinley


In this special episode of Schools in Focus, Security Today and Campus Security & Life Safety Editor Ralph Jensen discusses securing a campus with President of M2 Consulting Mitch McKinley. Listen along as Ralph and Mitch talk about security from the outside in

Duration: 20 min

Indoor Air Quality


One way schools and universities can mitigate the COVID-19 risk is to utilize their HVAC systems to circulate clean fresh air. In this episode, Mike Wolf, Director of Regulatory Affairs at Greenheck, and Ron Wendorski, Director of the Bernard A. Greenheck Education Center, talk about indoor air quality in classrooms. They explain how foundational technologies like increased air ventilation and filtration can help reduce the spread of COVID-19. They also explain how additive technologies like ultraviolet technology and bipolar ionization can help. We also discuss cost-effective ways to improve HVAC systems and the long-term benefits of indoor air quality.

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 41 min

KSU's New Multicultural Student Center


Ishita Banerjii, project architect at Hollis + Miller, discusses Kansas State University’s new multicultural student center. The building, dedicated to advance student diversity, features various gathering spaces like dance studios, huddle rooms, and a commercial kitchen. We discuss the vision behind the center, how the team incorporated feedback from numerous student groups, and the significance of having a multicultural student center on campus in the Midwest.

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 32 min

Centering Student Health and Wellness in Design


Turan Duda and Jeff Paine, founding principals of Duda|Paine Architects, discuss how architectural design is shifting to better address the mental and physical health needs of students. They talk about destigmatizing health centers, creating a welcoming, comfortable space with choice, the use of natural materials, and the importance of prevention in student wellness.

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 36 min

Active Shooter Response Planning


If a shooting happened on your campus, do you know what to do? In this episode, we speak to Tom Saccenti, a former campus police chief and security expert, about active shooter response planning in schools. We discuss the first thing schools should do when forming a response plan, the importance of knowing the school’s layout and ensuring there is a parent-student reunification plan.

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 26 min

School Lunch During a Pandemic


Belinda Oakley, CEO of Chartwells K12 and Seth Ferriell, CEO of SSC Services for Education talk about school food service during a pandemic. We discuss various models of food service to accommodate social distancing such as lunch in classrooms and take home meal kits; keeping cafeterias and classrooms clean; sustainable options to combat the increase of paper and plastic; and innovation in the K-12 food service industry.

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 38 min

Rethinking Higher Ed Spaces


Stu Rothenberger, who leads DLR Group’s Global Higher Education Studio, and his team talked to over 85 higher ed institutions and discussed their concerns and questions about reopening in the fall. Stu shared some of their findings with Schools In Focus and how DLR Group is rethinking higher ed spaces in the process. We discussed flexibility on a campus scale, the need for long-term resiliency plans, tackling equity issues, and creating smaller interaction spaces in a post-COVID19 learning environment.

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 29 min

COVID19 and the Impact on School Design


As schools across the country figure out how to safely reopen schools, we wonder: how will COVID-19 impact school design? Senior editor Yvonne Marquez discusses with Sylvia Kowalk and Robin Randall from Legat Architects on what changes we might see as schools reopen. They discuss design options available to schools now that can help with social distancing in facilities, what we can learn from other countries who have already reopened, and the long-term impacts of COVID-19 to educational environments.

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 29 min

Expert Advice on COVID-19 Cleaning


In this episode, we talk about the short-term and long-term goals of keeping school facilities clean amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Greg Whiteley — a specialist in cleaning science, hygiene and disinfection — describes how the virus works and how it affects children. He also outlines cleaning goals for the next year and provides practical advice for custodial workers.

Duration: 26 min

2020 Education Design Trends


Senior Editor Yvonne Marquez interviews Todd Ferking, a principal at DLR Group about education design trends to watch in 2020 and beyond. Collaborative commons, makerspaces, emerging technologies, flipped classrooms, research-based design and more!

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 31 min

Designing Library Interiors


In the first episode of Schools In Focus podcast, Senior Editor Yvonne Marquez interviews Andrew Hausmann, an associate principal at Perkins and Will. They speak about Shanghai American School's library transformation, its role as a central hub on campus, and how creativity and imagination were key to the space design.

Music by Joseph McDade

Duration: 30 min