School Design Advisory Team
Seattle Public Schools (SPS) created the School Design Advisory Team (SDAT) process to allow each school community to have input into renovation of or construction of their school building.
SPS has educational specifications (ed specs) for each level of schools. These are the standards for school buildings and furnishings. These ed specs are aligned with the district’s strategic plan, Seattle Excellence. Since every school is different, it’s important for the design team to understand the school community and culture.
Seattle Public Schools hires an architectural firm to design each construction project. The architects lead the design team for each project. Design teams sometimes include engineers and other professionals.
Early in the design process, representatives from the school community come together to form a school’s SDAT. SDATs typically include school and district staff, parents, and community members. Students are sometimes included for all or part of the process. The project construction managers work with the SDAT team.
The design team leads the SDAT in workshop meetings and tours. Over the three- to four-month process, the group identifies the vision, philosophy, and goals of the school and community. SDATs advise on the school design. They also provide a voice for the school and community during the pre-design and schematic design phase.
The SDAT collaboration will result in a school-specific design for the new Sacajawea Elementary School that also meets district standards.