Derby North Middle School

In 2010, the Derby community engaged in an effort to combine its 7th and 8th grade middle school and Derby Sixth Grade Center into two separate 6th-8th grade middle schools. The first of these schools, Derby North Middle School, was approved by voters through a $66.6 million bond issue in 2012. The new school was constructed along a major arterial in a rapidly developing part of the Wichita-Derby area.

Derby North Middle School:
American School & University Architectural Portfolio – 2015 Outstanding Design
2015 AIA Wichita Excellence in Architecture

The project required sustainable and learning-focused features, including interactive technology accommodations, energy efficiency, daylighting, and a colorful, design-conscious interior. With the use of repetitive elements, transparent volumes and alternating materials, students encounter the building’s design features at every turn.

Using the school’s colors and warm wood tones, the school’s cafetorium (cafeteria/auditorium) seats 300 at lunch periods and provides seating for more than 600 during performances. Nearby, the day-lit main corridor leads to academic classrooms with a pod structure to group grades together and an exploratory wing with classrooms designed for hands-on learning.

The athletic complex includes a top-loading 1000-seat gymnasium with perimeter walking track, a 400-seat auxiliary gymnasium, and a large multipurpose/fitness space. The facility’s two-level walk-out plan allows for lower level locker rooms, a weight room, and additional entrances for athletes and patrons.

“Schaefer made themselves available to answer our questions, even the obvious ones. They were never out of touch or too busy to take a call or answer an email when we needed them. They never let us down.”
— Craig Wilford, Superintendent, Derby Public Schools