Groton Elementary Schools

Groton, CT

Kolnaski: 74,000 SF
Northeast: 68,000 SF

550 students, PreK-5 (each)

$26.4 million (each)


The January 2008 opening of Catherine Kolnaski and Northeast Academy schools brought the first new elementary schools to the Town of Groton since the 1960s. The two PreK-5 schools are nearly identical in program and spatial arrangement and they offer equal amenities to their respective student bodies.

Flexibility of the learning environment and the integration of SPED program population emerged some of the most important criteria to project stakeholders. JCJ responded with L-shaped classroom configurations that provide for the most adaptable and diverse learning environments. Classroom spaces can adapt to age groups, and activities can be arranged to support formal, informal and creative learning.

The physical environment is scaled to the students. The one-story wing houses students in grades PreK-1; the two-story wing houses students in grades 2-5 and the media center is centrally located between. Both schools feature a high-ceilinged, glass entrance that optimizes natural light.

Learning by Design Magazine, Citation for Excellence, 2010