A collection of three linked buildings were added along the southern edge of MSD’s historic Frederick, MD campus, completed in 2008 for a construction cost of $23 million. The project is anchored at its center by a 48,000 sf school building, with classrooms, offices, library, gymnasium and cafetorium for grades K-5. To the west, a 16,000sf Early Intervention Center was created for infant/toddler/early childhood education, with staff offices and assembly space for family education. To the east, a new 12,000sf Student Support Services wing provides clinical therapy, counseling, and infirmary services for the entire campus.
Nearing the middle of its second century on this site, MSD was facing competitive enrollment challenges from mainstream and other schools offering K-12 education for the Deaf and hard of hearing. In response, the school set out to advance its programs and facilities for Deaf children from birth to middle school age. The goal was to infuse 21st Century teaching and technology into a narrative, child-scaled environment, capable of easing the transitions from home to child care, primary and elementary levels. In the years following the new school’s completion, MSD went on to win the national Deaf Academic Bowl competition an unprecedented four consecutive times, from 2010 thru 2013.
The overarching theme for this completion of the Frederick campus was to create a modern, high-performing school without interrupting the historic context of the existing buildings and nearby town. All three buildings are clad in the soft red brick of the original campus, with playful forms that mark the various entries, and evoke the dignity and charm of historic Frederick. A two-story masonry tower with glass cupola at the school’s entrance anchors the end of a pedestrian axis extending from the main campus quad, uphill to the north.
Social development is so important...Here, they are part of their peer community and they can equally participate in anything the school offers.
- James Tucker
Hord Coplan + Macht,