Annie Purl Elementary School

This school in Georgetown, Texas, designed by Texas-based firm Huckabee, pays homage to the nearby historic town square while embracing an inventive, versatile environment that encourages creativity and innovation.

The Georgetown Independent School District (GISD) community adopted a new learner profile that shaped the direction of design for new and reconstructed schools. Huckabee worked collaboratively with GISD during planning to define curriculum requirements, professional development needs, and spatial relationships to support the new educational model.

As such, Annie Purl Elementary School replaces an aging facility with an inventive environment that supports learners who think critically, seek self-knowledge, and are creative, innovative, and collaborative. Each space within the school responds to these values.

The two-story facility is progressive, blending into a historic aesthetic that matches the nearby town square. The intersection of history and innovation is found inside as well; learning communities surround the library, in the same way storefronts surround the county courthouse. Classrooms feature floor-to-ceiling glazing on interior walls; custom graphics depicting the community’s oldest buildings line the glass.

The library is the hub and is critical to the creative process that drives instruction. Within the school, each space is connected, visually and physically, to the library. Second-story classrooms have windows into the library; art labs open into the library, increasing usable creative space; the makerspace connects an outdoor courtyard to the library; and administrative offices and meeting rooms have expansive views into the library, which also supports passive supervision.

Seven grade-level communities feature classrooms, labs, flex space, and teacher planning rooms. Movable and writable walls connect classrooms; they also open to support co-teaching and large group activities. Flexible furniture, technology, and mobile storage promote choice-driven instruction. Students love the ability to see from their classroom into all surrounding spaces.

Annie Purl Elementary is a versatile school designed to spark imagination while creating a comfortable, welcoming, and inviting atmosphere. Spaces promote choice in small and large ways, giving students and teachers the freedom to explore personal endeavors while also impacting peers through shared and customized learning experiences.

For more on Huckabee, find out how the firm evolved during an economic downturn to offer their clients a full-service experience.

Image credits

Annie Purl Elementary School - exterior


Annie Purl Elementary School - interior stairs


Annie Purl Elementary School - interior classroom


Annie Purl Elementary School - recess


Annie Purl Elementary School - full exterior