Conestoga High School

Founded in the 1980s in Murray, Nebraska, Conestoga Junior-Senior High School needed a far-reaching renewal. With an alternative program, a compressed school week and tech-savvy classes, the school is on an ongoing mission to ‘inspire and prepare students for life’. To meet that ambition, school leaders approach every project with creativity —including the choice of new flooring for the school.

  • Location: Nebraska (USA)
  • Sector: Education
  • Product Category: Carpet tiles

The impact of inspirational flooring design on learning

By bringing together students and teachers, Superintendent Beth Johnsen made the renovation a schoolwide project. Aesthetics and performance were important selection criteria in their decision-making process, together with budget and durability. The result turned into a lesson on how flooring design can have an inspirational impact on learning.

A shared mission to spark creativity

When Beth Johnsen arrived at Conestoga as a new superintendent, she made it her mission to transform the building with unique look that will help the facility stand out and inspire current and future students.

“I really believe a creative environment with colour and different impulses stimulates classroom activities. It has a positive impact on learning and teaching as both students and teachers have more energy and pride in where they learn and work.” said Johnsen.

Highlighting these beliefs, Johnsen included students and faculty members in the transformation of Conestoga. Together, they compared various carpet and tile samples to replace the failing vinyl composition tile (VCT) flooring and stained, worn carpet. “The students had wild ideas, they wanted to create something unique,” said Principal David Friedli.

A unique combination of styles

This collaboration between students and faculty resulted in a unique combination of styles. They agreed on the bold and dynamic designs found in IVC’s mother company Mohawk Group’s Street Thread Collection and picked styles named Off the Wall, Pop Icon, Super Fresh, and Taped Off. The patterns are inspired by the work of urban street artists and resemble the types of designs students wear on their shirts and shoes. In areas where hard surface flooring was a better solution, Select Step Resilient Tile in Stone was used.

Colorful and easy to maintain

Conestoga is home to 400 people on an average school day. During events, this amount increases by an extra 600 to 700 people. Such high traffic is tough on any carpet, but as Street Thread is crafted of Duracolor premium nylon, it offers inherent stain protection. Its durability and easy cleaning have been put to the test and emerged with flying colors.

Friedli recalled the look on a student’s face when he dropped lasagna on the new carpet. “He was mortified, but it proved to be no problem as it cleaned up right away.” The Select Step Resilient Tile in Stone is a polish-optional floor and has a lower life cycle cost than VCT. The low-maintenance aspect especially appealed to Friedli: “By not having to strip and wax the floors, we’ve eliminated 10 days of maintenance each summer.”

Brightening up the school

The renovation has an impact on learning and school pride. “The new flooring brings in new energy every day. It is inspirational, catches your eye and brightens up your day when you walk in.” Johnsen said. “It is amazing what a carpet can do,” Friedli adds. “The bold renovation proves that the school cares about its students and teachers. It fills everyone in the building with a sense of pride to have invested and participated in the project. The renovation indicates that we do not shy away from creativity and innovation. At Conestoga, you’ll be inspired and prepared to take the next step on your path.”

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