In early January, The Archer School for Girls celebrated the groundbreaking of its Campus Master Plan. The event included addresses from Archer’s Head of School Elizabeth English, Craig Allen Jameson, Principal and Design Director at Parallax Architects, and Archer’s Board Chair Frank Marshall.
The School enrolls nearly 500 students reflecting the face of Greater Los Angeles: 39 percent of the student body is made up of students of color who come from 81 ZIP codes and 155 different feeder schools. Nearly $4 million in financial aid is awarded annually.
In August 2015, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously approved The Archer School for Girls’ Campus Preservation and Improvement Plan. Construction of the new Academic Center began in December, and once completed will feature 30,000 square feet of flexible and light-filled spaces that offer a wide variety of learning opportunities indoors and out.
Archer’s main campus building was originally built in 1931 as the Eastern Star Home. Today, it is a registered Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument. The new Academic Center will replace a non-historic addition with all-new instructional spaces specifically designed for educating young women.
“Not only will the new Academic Center deliver an exceptional learning environment, its architecture provides a graceful transition from past to present with a design closely compatible with the historic building yet boldly contemporary in character and spirit,” said Jameson.
The addition of new maker and interactive spaces to the campus in recent years has already proven the value of such environments. Only one year after opening the Saban IDEAlab, a team of Archer students became only one of 14 schools selected nationwide to receive a grant from Lemelson MIT for their faucet-mounted drought meter invention. Similarly, the MediaSpace has facilitated development of student-led events including the Archer Film Festival, which earlier in the year received over 800 submissions from around the world and boasted Kathleen Kennedy as its keynote speaker.
“In its short history, Archer has forged a new path for what is possible in the field of education, creating spaces that enable girls to realize their potential and soar,” said Marshall. “You can see this clearly in every Archer girl you meet – they are ambitious, creative, thoughtful, kind. I am proud to support the School and this visionary Campus Plan.”