DMUSD applies design thinking to Measure MM process


The Del Mar Union School District’s brainstorming sessions have begun as they work toward putting Measure MM dollars to work this year at every school site. The site meetings, which have been held so far at Carmel Del Mar and Torrey Hills Schools, replaced a facilities task force as a way to gather input in creating a prioritized capital improvement plan for the $186 million in bond funds.

The district and school board are especially excited about a brainstorming activity tailored toward its students: The School of the Future Design Challenge.

In the coming months, all district students will be invited to ignite their genius and create a design for their ideal future school. Laura Spencer, executive director of innovation and design, said School of the Future designs can be crafted in multiple ways and students can submit drawings or paintings, 3D models, narratives, CAD drawings, product pitches or sculptures.

“We want to leave it open so that the creation of the product is up to the student, to use their passions and interests to represent the school in a way that makes sense to them,” Spencer said at the board’s Jan. 23 meeting.

While plans for the challenge are still in the works, the hope is to share designs at school site exhibitions, student video interviews and a presentation to the school board. Spencer said the board will be able to look at any theme to the ideas that emerge about what students see as being an extraordinary school—insight that may be passed along to architects.

“I cannot wait to see what our kids come up with, it’s going to be amazing,” said DMUSD President Erica Halpern.

The following upcoming school site brainstorming meetings will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. in each school’s multi-use room:

  • Tuesday, Feb. 5: Ashley Falls School
  • Wednesday, Feb. 6: Del Mar Hills Academy

For more information, visit under the Measure MM tab.