Places for Learning- Contemporary Designs in Education

These publications have represented the collection of all awards entries from both Victorian 2007/2008 and the Australian Awards 2009/2010
It is hoped this publication will serve as an archive both of organization as well as well as record or recent development in educational facilities in Australia.

Project Details

Robert Bienveu

Commendation Category 5 - An Education Initiative or a Design Solution for an Innovative Program


Kneeler Design Pty Ltd Architects (Especially Robert Bienvenu & Peter Scott)



Project Overview

Places for Learning – Contemporary Designs in Education publication series showcases the best contemporary educational facilities through the lens of an awards programme. As John Denton (a past Victorian State Government Architect) once remarked, ‘........awards are an ideal means to improve the standard of outcomes across the board. By setting high benchmarks, other projects aspire to reach or exceed other entries and past winners.’

In addition to highlighting the best work, these publications provide a comprehensive reference through which schools and others in the education community can become aware of the creative diversity in building solutions possible for different learning environments. The projects shown and the accompanying commentaries can provide schools with a preliminary knowledge of and introduction to various architects’ work.

The publications also encourage ‘cross pollination’ within the design and architecture profession, whereby architects may be inspired and informed by the buildings presented by their colleagues.

An historic account of the school projects realised for each year is also contained within these books. The changing dynamics of pedagogy are expressed through these designs; in particular the response to planning solutions, and the manipulation of space to reflect the contemporary teaching and learning environment. Events such as peak funding generated by the BER grants is evident in the diversity of smaller projects presented.

Specific challenges in preparing these books was mainly due to not having a precedent and in particular not having editing nor publishing experience. Firstly the size & format were experimented with, finally deciding on A4 with an A3 spread for each project, having a balance of text, photos and plans, for each given submission varied the standard template was challenged and in instances required going back to the entry for extra or varied information. The covers and decision to 'flip' the front to back cover and year was radical however seems to be successful (albeit a bit of challenge for some readers). We were assisted by Cefpi committee for proof reading which was invaluable, however the odd error still slipped through. Final Publishing meant re typesetting and adjusting boarders however all the challenges listed dissipated when a hard copy was placed in our hands

How challenges were met throughout the long process as a credit to all the staff who worked on the publication, We tried to make all entrants stand out and be of a professional standard.

Other significant details concentrate on post publication. Now the books have been in publication, their succuss whilst hard to measure, is twofold. On one handbooks have sold throughout Australia and Overseas. More pleasing is the encouraging feedback from all sources; Architects who feature and even those don't, schools who were featured and importantly those using the books in preparation for future projects. we are very proud of the books, the hard work has been well rewarded and we dearly hope their circulation has made a positive contribution as an education initiative.

To order the publications go to

Juries Comments

"There were a limited number of entries in this category.

The judges were looking for an entry that represented an innovation having the potential to extend its influence well beyond those who immediately benefited from it. The jury decided not to nominate a winner for this category as no submission was able to demonstrate a degree of innovation that had the widespread applicability worthy of such an award.

Two entries were considered worthy of commendation.

Commendation goes to the publication "Places for Learning – Contemporary Designs in Education" produced by the Victorian Chapter of CEFPI. This publication has had two editions to date, both of which are of exceptional quality and presentation. They have served to showcase the best in contemporary educational facilities in Victoria as recognised through the Chapter awards, which have since spawned these regional awards. As a result, exceptional places for learning in Victoria are being seen alongside the best in broader architecture and design on bookshelves both in Australia and overseas.

Congratulations to Kneeler Design and the Victorian Chapter of CEFPI, particularly Robert Bienvenu, Peter Scott and Judith North."


This page last updated: Friday 31 May 2013