This Pre K-6 school will serve children and families from Districts 3,4 and 5 of the Gila River Indian Community. Located in District 5, the school is surrounded by cultivated farmland and in a region which has historically been the agricultural hub for the Akimel O'otham (Pima) and Pee Posh (Maricopa) peoples. The school will focus on student's global readiness while maintaining the Akimel O'otham Ñeo'ok and Himdag. The campus will provide an immersive cultural experience, helping to preserve the languages, stories and traditions of the tribes.
The layout of the campus takes inspiration from the agricultural fields that sustained the Akimel O'otham and Pee Posh and the canals they were so skilled in devising and constructing. Classroom cluster and core/community buildings are organized around a central ribbon of green space. The campus will include indoor and outdoor commons that areas that will provide each grade level cluster a space for flexible instruction.
On the western edge of the campus is an integrated Agriculture-Cultural Arts-Language-Applied Arts building. This building will support an exciting and immersive program bringing together the practical, scientific, historical and cultural underpinnings of agriculture. Raised and traditional waffle beds will surround the building and will also be dispersed throughout the campus. To celebrate water several features have been designed to connect students to the life sustaining cycle of rain and renewal.
In addition to a dedicated sensory classroom, playgrounds and all campus buildings will be designed in alignment with Universal Design in Education principles and support inclusive experiences for all members of the school community. Working with a select group of parents and elders, the project will incorporate a robust artwork program that will express the creativity, ingenuity, culture and traditions of the Community.