Stars of Distinction

Projects are reviewed in each of the five areas below, along with a Special Area of Distinction that emphasizes a timely topic to maintain currency and relevancy. School Transformation will repeat as this year’s Special Area of Distinction.


Design—Star of Distinction Scale and relationship of spaces, use of materials, building organization and building flow, instructional function and educational appropriateness are elements of design excellence. Describe how the design enhances and supports the student learning experience.
Value—Star of Distinction Efficiency, adaptability, flexibility, shared use, cost of ownership, use of materials, and life-cycle cost are some of the considerations in providing building intelligibility and enhanced value.  Describe specifically how this project provides enhanced value.
Sustainability—Star of Distinction Sustainable design strives to minimize the building impact on the environment, enhance student wellbeing and connect learners with the natural environment. Describe the projects sustainable attributes and how those have been articulated into learning opportunities for students.
Community—Star of Distinction The authenticity, relevancy, and the context of place and function are unique considerations for each project.  Describe how this project reflects, defines, and creates a sense of place in context with local culture and educational function.
Planning—Star of Distinction Planning is both a process and the articulation of design concepts.  Describe how the project’s mission, goals, educational program and implementation strategies were informed through a thoughtful planning and design process.
Transformation—Star of Distinction School Transformation, chosen once again as the Special Area of Distinction, redefines the learning place in its nature, shape, character and/or form in new or renovated facilities.  At this intersection of learning and space, describe by giving examples of how this project supports learners acquiring and mastering 21st Century learning skills.