Finalist 3: St. Raymond School
Finalist 3: Margaret Puszka St. Raymond School in Mount Prospect
Here at St. Raymond, we are a staff of fifty dedicated to inspiring and teaching today's youth. We work hard to keep our students happy and comfortable.
Most importantly, we give our all to make sure that our students feel safe.
We work here not for honor, fame, nor for money. We work here because we love what we do.
Our goal is to foster intelligent, loving, caring, and creative children. This is why our time, school funds, and care are directed to bettering the atmosphere for our students, rather than ourselves.
The school building has undergone several renovations in the past 15 years and although the '80s wall paper in the faculty lounge was finally removed and the walls painted, the room lacks any real functionality. The faculty lounge is used by the entire staff as a lunchroom, work room, and on occasion a meeting room.
It is equipped with a copier, laminator, file cabinets, large paper cutter, faculty mailboxes, refrigerator, mini-fridge, three microwaves, and a water cooler. Four round tables -- one that doesn't match and is wobbly, and stackable chairs don't offer enough comfortable space to facilitate faculty meetings. Nor is the room equipped with any type of projection/SMART Board to use for meetings.
Therefore, faculty meetings are held in a classroom. Finally, since our 40-minute lunch is the only time we have to relax and refuel, the space is far from relaxing or inviting.
We are looking for a faculty lounge that creates a balance between our office and lunch equipment, that can function as a potential meeting room for 40 teachers, and that rejuvenates our minds, comforts our toes, and readies us to inspire our students.
Expert advice: Rieke Office Interiors of Elgin
A teacher's lounge has many functions. This lounge serves, not only as a lunchroom, but it is a meeting space and work room for the teachers and staff.
As you can see from the before photo, the room although large is not organized and the furniture is the space is mismatched, probably left over from other school renovations. Teachers always put themselves last.
Our goal for this design would be to transform this lounge to a relaxing environment where teachers could focus on projects and get away from their classrooms. In order to achieve that I would start by choosing finishes that are calming.
I would suggest wood vinyl floor for both durable and warmth, gray millwork to contrast the wood along with a cool wall color. As for the furniture we would suggest round tables and tablet arm lounge chairs. The lounge chairs are a great place for informal meetings and the tables can be used to eat lunch or work on projects.
Informal teacher-to-teacher collaboration can have a positive impact on students. Having the right environment to achieve that is key. This redesign would help foster that collaboration.