The La Paz Community School South campus hosts the grade 3-12 programs and is a purpose built facility constructed to LEED Silver Standards and designed to respect the rich Guanacaste culture and landscape, while embracing LEED principals in both passive and active energy conservation systems. Located on 8 acres of pasture land, the goal of the project is to create a comprehensive learning experience for students and visitors. The master plan is presently 60% complete and includes the following experiential learning components and collaborations on the campus.
Tropical Dry Forest Native Plant Garden with student created QR code readers in collaboration with Pro Nativas:
Reforestation Greenhouse in collaboration with Salve Monos:
Black Water Treatment Plant with Integrated Water Irrigation System in collaboration with Eloy Wastewater Treatment:
Post Consumer and Industrial Waste Wall System in collaboration with Plycem:
Use of native sustainably reforested tree species for school structure in collaboration with Mar Vista Development:
Passive cooling design in collaboration with DYS Arquitectos:
Complete soccer field with locally grown grass with minimal irrigation.
The La Paz Community School North campus hosts the PreK-2 program and is located on less than an acre of naturally landscaped terrain a half kilometer from the pristine beaches of Brasilito, Flamingo, and Potrero in the northwest province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Don Ruetz, owner of The Jungle Gym, has generously donated classroom space to La Paz Community School. La Paz also continues to seek donations to help fund future construction and expansion. We thank Don and the Ruetz family as well as our friends of La Paz for supporting new educational opportunities and progress in the coastal Guanacaste community.
While the La Paz philosophy is such that the community and school grounds are the primary learning space, La Paz Community School offers eight classroom spaces of approximately 35 meters squared each as a home base to each class. As lessons are differentiated and focused on student centered, constructivist theories in education, the areas surrounding each classroom are covered and utilized for outdoor learning spaces as well. The library is a small, quiet room with nearly 4,000 volumes of books primarily in English and Spanish as well as other languages from around the world.
Cynthia Ruetz Yoga Center
Every class has an opportunity to utilize this space on a daily basis. This daily interaction with nature through reading, writing, or discussion is an essential component of our place-based education. It’s also where La Paz students begin each day at the “Community Meeting.” Students greet each other and share classroom projects, personal stories, songs, performances, and weekly events.
Justin and Jack Ruetz Basketball Center
The new state of the art, air-conditioned, wood floor gymnasium is an ideal location for creative movement, performances, PE and athletic activities.
Paul and Connor Kells Skatepark
The skatepark has presently been converted into two classrooms for the 4th-6th grade while the school prepares for the impending expansion. Previously, the skatepark was available to the kids during lunch and recess and on certain days after school. It also serves as a great place for experiments in the physical sciences.
This peaceful space serves as the entrance to La Paz. The front and administrative offices are both located here. This area is also home to the La Paz Community garden, which offers the students a welcome pathway to learning each day.