First New Elementary School for California City in a Decade

By Lisa Kopochinski

FOLSOM, Calif.—A new Kindergarten through fifth grade school in Folsom, Calif.—which is approximately 25 miles east of Sacramento— will serve more than 650 students when the new campus opens for the 2021-2022 school year.

Mangini Ranch Elementary School will be located in the brand-new Folsom Ranch neighborhood. Community leaders and parents are especially happy about this project being the first new school for the Folsom Ranch development, as well as the first new school built in Folsom in more than 10 years.

Kitchell CEM—which has locations across California and in Arizona— is the general contractor on this $50 million school that will feature innovative technology and additional resource space beyond the classrooms to promote collaboration and connections. A groundbreaking ceremony for this project was held in February.

Sacramento-based Rainforth Grau Architects (RGA) is the architect on this new school. The firm started working on preliminary programming with the District in 2015.

“The school was designed as a two-story single building after significant research was done with the District on trends in curriculum, collaboration and safety,” said RGA Principal Architect Teri Jamison.

“The design focuses on connectivity, collaboration and community, which includes pull-out collaboration spaces, a central commons area for large gatherings and clusters of classrooms for each grade level promoting community.”

There is increased transparency of the spaces to promote connection and supervision throughout the building.

“An access control system is being provided with integration to intrusion and video surveillance systems to streamline security and safety features of the facility,” she explained.  “All instructional and gathering spaces are technologically robust with touchscreen monitors, speakers for amplification and individual student devices.

Jamison said the biggest design challenge was the journey to arrive at the solution being constructed.

“The change from a campus-style organization to a multi-story single building is a cultural shift for the school district and there was an increased effort expended early on in weighing all the options, concerns and opportunities in pursing this change in methodology.”

Mangini Ranch Elementary School is the first of five new elementary schools planned to be built for the Folsom Ranch area.