The Virginia Educational Facility Planners (VEFP) is the state chapter of the Council of Educational Facility Planners International (CEFPI), a professional association whose sole mission is improving the places where children learn. CEFPI members — individuals, institutions and corporations — are actively involved in planning, designing, building, equipping and maintaining schools and colleges. Learn more about CEFPI on-line.
A Message from the President
Keith S. Webb
The military has a saying, “never volunteer for anything.” I missed class the day it was being taught because I sought this position. We are a group of facility professionals from the fields of K-12 education, architectural, engineering and construction fields who believe we can make a difference one person at a time. Having been involved in the Virginia Chapter of CEFPI as well as its predecessor, Virginia Educational Facility Planners, for over 13 years, I am proud to be allowed to lead this group which has evolved into an organization that attracts national and international attention due to the commitment of our members to bring the best minds together investigating best practices in the design and construction of K-12 schools. Our mission statement says it well. “To promote creative and responsible planning of school facilities, to foster professional development, and to exchange best practice knowledge of Virginia school facilities in order to provide the best possible learning environment for all students.”
Each year the Virginia Chapter of CEFPI holds 2 thought-provoking events; a mid-year conference held at a school within Virginia that exhibits best practices while discussing vital topics concerning education of students and an annual conference that pulls nationally and internationally significant speakers to discuss and collaborate with attendees on the theories, practices and outcomes of leading concepts of education and the design of buildings that support education.
This past year our mid-year conference was held at Fauquier High School in Warrenton, VA where the theme was School Safety and Security. We had 2 nationally recognized keynote speakers, Pat Lamb of Irving, TX ISD and Walter Pusey of Charleston SC PS, as well as a panel of security professionals from various school divisions within Virginia talking about trends, causes, responses and best practices in keeping students safe. As a part of the program, the recently renovated and enlarged Fauquier High School was presented as an example of best practice not only in safety, but other factors affecting the successful education of students.
At our annual conference held March 3 & 4 at the Williamsburg Lodge we learned from national and internationally acclaimed keynote speakers Andrew Zolli about the role of resilience in life, Ron Clark about the important role adults and attitudes play in student lives, Victoria Bergsagel about STEM academies, and Steven Bingler about the importance of community in learning. As always, our break-out sessions provided a more hands-on, local experience covering new schools constructed in Virginia, design considerations for recently designed Virginia projects, product showcases, and the student design competition winners from Virginia's architectural schools.
Many of the things we do are assisted greatly by the help of our sponsors. The scrolling area to the left of this message will identify some of them from the past year. They, as is true of all our members, are interested in the success of students. They are an invaluable cog in the wheel of producing first class schools for Virginia’s current and future students.So I invite everyone who is reading this to become involved with the Virginia Chapter of CEFPI. See why nearly 4,000 of your peers and colleagues nationally and over 100 firms or school districts in Virginia are part of the effort to produce cutting edge educational facilities for K-12 students.