The Commons the Harley School is the first education space in the country for grades pre-K through 12 to offer students multiple dimensions of education around creating a sustainable future.
The 15,000-square-foot structure, designed by Christopher Costanza of 9X30 Design Architecture and built by the Nichols Construction Team, earns its status as a “living building” because it generates its own energy, heats and cools with renewable nontoxic resources, captures and utilizes water and carbon in its greenhouse, and operates efficiently. Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of this is that it accomplishes all this by using students as the “brains” or controls for managing its operations.
During the school year, monthly talks are held here that are open to the public and focus on a variety of related topics, and the options are always expanding. This year, after being awarded funds through the U.S. Department of Agriculture, The Commons added a kitchen to its facilities.
Also housed in The Commons are the Briggs Center for Civic Engagement, Center for Mindfulness and Empathy Education (CMEE), a design lab and maker space, and our Middle School Science Center. Students of all ages use The Commons and it functions as the hub of Harley’s STEM education.